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A special drive-in Christmas panto is coming to Manchester this year

This looks so good!

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Parking Lot Social

This Christmas a special drive-in festival is coming to town with a big programme of films, party shows and family events – including a socially distanced panto. 

Brought to you by the Parking Lot Social team, the Winter Festival will bring the first parking lot pantomime to Manchester, keeping the centuries-old tradition of the Christmas panto alive.

With theatres set to be closed over the winter months, organisers have commissioned a brand new, 2020 drive-in version of the panto classic Cinderella, with all the essential elements that make the tale so special, as well as a few twists unique to the special ‘drive-in’ format. 

A troupe of nine professional actors will melt hearts as audiences follow Cinders on her adventures, helped by the Fairy Godmother. The specially written show has song and dance routines a-plenty, audience participation galore and a script that takes a light-hearted dig at some of the challenges thrown up by this strangest of years.

Parking Lot Social

As it’s a drive-in event, there will be a crew filming the action and broadcasting the panto from the stage directly onto two massive 40 foot screens – meaning that there’s not a bad seat in the house. 

Safety is at the heart of the event, and audiences take part in the immersive, interactive shows from their own cars. It’s also a completely contactless event ensuring a safe and socially distant experience.

The Winter Festival will feature a 60ft tall rainbow coloured Christmas tree, a giant DJing Santa Claus and the coolest Reindeer to have ever left the North Pole – if the panto isn’t enough for you.

On top of that, a selection of classic and modern Christmas films for all ages will be shown on two gigantic screens with the sound broadcast straight to cars.

Parking Lot Social

There’s also the ‘Big Weekender’, a Silent Disco, Live Cam ‘Car-A-Oke’, Party Bingo and Interactive Quiz, and a Social Kids event for the youngsters, featuring ‘Christmas car-a-oke’, an interactive quiz, three DJ silent disco and Party Bingo hosted by Santa Claus himself.

If you get hungry some of the best local food trucks around will be on site, with customers able to have their orders delivered directly to their cars. Expect classic gourmet burgers, loaded fries, wood-fired pizzas and hot dogs alongside sweet winter warmers including hot chocolate, donuts, toasted nuts, gingerbread men and more. 

To top it off, each night, events finish with a fantastic, festive firework finale.

Tickets are now on sale for the Winter Festival in Manchester, which will take place at the Trafford Centre from December 1st to the 6th – head over to the Parking Lot Social site here for more info and tickets.

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The best Autumnal walks for this weekend

Get wrapped up!

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Finest Media

There is something about Autumnal crisp walks, especially when the skies are super blue and the colourful leaves are falling.

With the majority of our time being spent at home indoors at the moment, it’s important we take some time to get some fresh air and enjoy the outdoors.

Greater Manchester undoubtedly has some of the best walks in the North West with some stunning jaw-dropping views.

Make some time for these stunning walks this winter season and enjoy a nice warm mulled wine after – it is the season after all!

John Illingworth/Geograph

Saddleworth Cycle & Horse Trail
Considered to be the posher part of Oldham, Saddleworth is located on the cusp of the Pennines, with stunning landscapes, beautiful nature and some of the best walks Greater Manchester has to offer.

You’re in true God’s Country here, with the valley stretching all around you. I also highly recommend a walk down the canal in Diggle, and if they’re open – a visit
to the excellent Grandpa Greene’s Luxury Ice Cream for a scoop or five.

Download a trail map here.

Francis Franklin/Wikimedia

Rivington
Located in the heart of good old Bolton, Rivington is a large rural area full of some of the most stunning woodland views. With impressive stone-built stairs and outbuildings and the shabby waterfall cascading slowly down the rock face it’s not what you expect to see in Bolton, more like Bali (maybe that’s a little extreme), especially with the charming views of the Japanese inspired pond & gardens.

Keep on winding upwards and your goal will come clearly into view, the landmark Grade II listed Pike Tower sitting proudly at the summit. It’s definitely a climb, but it’s worth it, especially when you get to see the views at the top, and for the insta obv.

David Dixon/Geograph

Chadkirk Chapel
A short trip from east Stockport you’ll find a peaceful walk and a very charming chapel. For anybody who’s local to Stockport will know that it’s not exactly country walk territory, however just 10 minutes out the way you’ll find Chadkirk Chapel and Estate.

The walk itself is pretty easy and certainly children and dog friendly! During this time of year all the leaves are falling and if you look up the colours are beautiful.

Alex Watson

Derwent Reservoir
Derwent Reservoir, The Peak District, the walk itself is a whopping 16KM however if you’re short for time there is the option to rent bikes to speed things up a little. Not only stunning views, but there’s also a little history held at Derwent Res, about 10 minutes into the walk you’ll pass The Howden Dam, used by Lancaster Bomber pilots to practise bombing runs and targeting.

They also created the ‘Bouncing Bomb’ for the 1943 raid of the dams on the German Ruhr. Wrap up for this one, with being right on the water you’ll need hat, scarfs, gloves, the lot!

Ellie Edginton

Entwistle Reservoir
Heading a little further up North, just past Bolton, you’ll find The Entwistle Reservoir. On a crisp autumnal sunny day, you’ll feel like you’ve just hopped off a plane and landed in Canada, no joke.

The views over the water are completely breath-taking. Surrounded by rows and rows of woodland and trees the walk is only around 2.5miles long. A quick heads up, it can be super busy at the weekends and the parking can be a little manic so either get their early or park a little further up the road.

Whilst you’re there grab yourself some serious pub grub and a pint from The Starbury Duck just 5 minutes up the road.

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A terrifying Horror Maze is coming to Manchester this weekend

Can you handle it?

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Into The Dark

There’s a terrifying scare attraction happening this weekend and it’s Covid and social distancing friendly!

If 2020 wasn’t scary enough for you, there’s a dark and horrifying maze waiting for you this weekend. 

Into the Dark is an immersive experience that promises to be utterly terrifying and says ‘be prepared to scream like never before’. 

There will be four terrifying maze arenas that will give you a glimpse into the twisted minds of iconic horror legends.

Into The Dark

If you think you’re brave enough, there will even be an ‘Extreme Zone’.

Tickets start at £22 for the four scare zones and £33 for a chance to head into the Extreme Zone if you think you can handle it.

You’ll get 30-minutes to enjoy the truly terrifying experience with sessions split into smaller blocks to ensure government guidelines are abided. 

You have to be over 14 to enter or over 18 to buy the Extreme tickets.

Buy tickets

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There’s a Halloween-themed fancy dress competition for dogs this weekend

It’s Howl’oween…

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Hatch has confirmed their alternative Halloween celebration which sees a fancy dress competition for your dog will be going ahead for this year! 

It will look a little different this year with social distancing measures and curfews in place but there is still plenty of fun to be had for you and your pooch.

This will mark the third year of Howl’oween which will be taking place this Saturday, October 31st.

The Hatch team will be on the lookout for the best-dressed pooch, so get them dolled up with their best clobber.

hatch

The first 50 people down on the day will be treated to a ghoulish goodie bag full of sweet treats.

Dress up is encouraged for both dogs and owners – there will even be prizes for the best-dressed human. Howl’oween kicks off at 11am and will finish at 9:30pm, just in time for the curfew. 

So if you think your four-legged friend has got what it takes to be crowned the Spooky Pooch 2020 head down this weekend! 

Find out more here

 

 

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