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Manchester Pride confirms the festival will be happening this year

Some more good news

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manchesterpride / Instagram

Manchester Pride has today confirmed the good news that it will be going ahead this year.

Plans for a physical festival to celebrate LGBTQ+ life in Greater Manchester are coming together for the August Bank Holiday weekend.

The charity is planning to hold the Manchester Pride Festival, in partnership with Virgin Atlantic, in its regular spot from Friday August 27th until Monday August 30th. 

On Monday Boris Johnson outlined England’s roadmap out of lockdown, with the plan that live events will be able return this summer. 

But with the pandemic always front of mind, Manchester Pride has revealed that it has alternative exciting plans which can be activated if the proposed dates for the roadmap out of lockdown change.

The four day event, which brings thousands of people to the city centre each year, is set to return for another weekend of campaigning, celebrating and fundraising for LGBTQ+ life, featuring activism, equality, youth and family, arts and culture, community and partying.

The team behind the festival is working towards a programme of events that includes all of the traditional elements, with some tweaks and allowances for the new restrictions as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The biggest difference will be a reduced capacity MCR Pride Live, which in response to audience feedback will be held at a smaller venue to ensure that the event is accessible, safe and viable. 

To ensure the safety and comfort of festival-goers, artists and the Manchester Pride team the event’s capacity will be reduced by 50% – the venue will be revealed later this year.

Manchester Pride Festival 2021 will be made up of:

  • THE GAY VILLAGE PARTY, 27th–30th August 2021
  • MCR PRIDE LIVE, 28th– 29th August 2021
  • MANCHESTER PRIDE PARADE, 28th August 2021
  • THE CANDLELIT VIGIL, 30th August 2021
  • SUPERBIA WEEKEND, 28th- 29th August 2021
  • HUMAN RIGHTS FORUM, 29th August 2021
  • YOUTH PRIDE MCR, 29th August 2021
  • FAMILY PRIDE MCR, 28th August 2021
  • + MORE TO BE ANNOUNCED

Mark Fletcher, CEO of Manchester Pride, said: “Manchester Pride is proud to part of a global Pride movement that celebrates advancements in equality and challenges discrimination faced by LGBTQ+ people. As both a charity and organisers one of the UK’s largest Pride festivals, we had to fight for our survival throughout 2020.

“Having to postpone the Manchester Pride Festival in 2020 was necessary but extremely hard for myself and the team and I am so pleased that we are able to plan for an event in 2021. Naturally there is some uncertainty over what will happen in the coming months but we have to plan now in order to be able to deliver a festival of this scale.

“We are confident that by reducing the capacity of MCR Pride Live we can deliver the event, as long as the government’s plans for vaccinations and reopening of events and hospitality remain on track. With the health and safety of everyone involved our key priority, we remain cautiously optimistic and have plans in place to respond to a number of potential scenarios.

“Whatever happens Manchester Pride will deliver a celebration of LGBTQ+ life in Greater Manchester this August and we will do everything we can to make it a Covid safe, live, in person event across the city. 

“If this just isn’t possible then we will host an alternative, innovative, world class celebration that incorporates socially distanced events and digital elements to ensure that LGBTQ+ people in Greater Manchester can come together to celebrate and ensure that our campaign for greater LGBTQ+ equality continues at this vital time.”

Juha Jarvinen, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Atlantic added: “We’re delighted that the Manchester Pride Festival is back for 2021 uniting people to celebrate LGBTQ+ culture. It’s been a difficult year for everyone and we look forward to working with Mark and the team to bring this much-loved festival safely back to the heart of Manchester.

“Virgin Atlantic has long been staunch supporters of LGBTQ+ rights and we strongly believe in making our business as inclusive and welcoming as possible. Although we haven’t been flying as many passengers as we’d like over the last year, we certainly haven’t been sitting still. 

“We are working with Open for Business to show the economic impact that anti-LGBTQ+ laws have on countries around the world and how these laws restrict tourism and limit growth.  In a post-Covid world, as travel and tourism recovers, it’s more important than ever for destinations to be open and welcoming to everyone.  

“It’s an exciting time for us and as travel restrictions relax, we look forward to welcoming people back onboard Virgin Atlantic, flying them safely from Manchester to their favourite destinations including  Orlando, Barbados, New York , Los Angeles, Islamabad and Atlanta.”

Tickets for all events, from Superbia Weekend to Youth Pride MCR, will be released over the next few months so keep your eyes peeled.

For those who bought tickets for the events due to take place in 2020, tickets were automatically rolled over to 2021. 

Should the event be cancelled or rescheduled, all tickets will be automatically rolled over to 2022, and anyone who doesn’t want to roll forward their ticket will have the option for a refund at face value. 

For more information about the festival, head over to the website here.

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There’s a massive free fitness class taking place in Manchester this week

Fancy trying out David Beckham’s workout for free?

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F45 Track

A huge – and completely free – fitness class is happening in Manchester this week, and it could very well be the opportunity to kickstart your health and fitness journey you’ve been waiting for.

Now, I’ll be the first to acknowledge that mustering the strength, the energy and simply the sheer will to attend exercise classes can be a challenge but, as the festive season and an abundance of booze and pigs in blankets approach, it is more important than ever to stay on top of your health.

And luckily for you lot, the opportunity to test the waters for free will be presenting itself this week courtesy of the globally acclaimed fitness company, F45 Track.

F45 Track

Having made its debut in LA back in 2019, F45 Track does what it says on the tin by hosting forty-five minute outdoor training sessions that offer both the public and F45 members a variation of in-studio sessions, all with the aim to burn 750 calories in the forty-five minute time slot.

The ‘F’ stands for ‘Functional Training’, which is a mix of circuit and HIIT style workouts geared towards everyday movement. And the forty-five? Well, that’s the total amount of time for, in their words, ‘sweat-dripping, heart-pumping fun’.

@pullyjj / Instagram

@lewisjonesfitness / Instagram

The company has since expanded to locations all across the globe and has enjoyed a number of celebrity clients like Man United legend David Beckham, who took part in F45 Track workouts during the 2020 lockdowns. 

But putting the glitz and the glamour of celebrity clients to one side, F45 Track’s latest project here in Manchester is offering a FREE fitness class this week courtesy of F45 NQ and the F45 Salford Central.

Yep, completely free for anyone who wants to take part, no strings attached.

The ‘biggest fitness class in Manchester’ will be taking place this Thursday, September 21st and will be hosted by Cory George, F45’s Global Head of Fitness, who will be flying in from LA specially for the event. 

There will also be fresh smoothies, drinks, and healthy snacks provided throughout the event. 

@zobarks / Instagram

Those wanting to take part will simply need to bring a towel, a water bottle and plenty of energy to The Love Factory at 5:30pm, rearing and ready for the 6pm start. 

There’s space for 2,000 people to take part so register yourself and your friends here. You can also head over to the F45 website and Instagram page for news and updates. 

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A Manchester bar is giving away free drinks to anyone who beats the bartender at ping-pong or darts

Reckon you have what it takes?

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@tttmcr / Instagram

Manchester’s resident ping-pong bar Twenty Twenty Two is giving away free drinks to anyone who can beat their bartenders at ping pong or darts.

While Twenty Twenty Two has always been famous for its abundance of ping pong tables, underground brick bunker vibes, indoor cinema screenings and cool wall art, it is now known for something else: Darts.

The establishment’s Dead Eye Dart Club is a fantastic new addition to the Northern Quarter’s drinking scene; a no-fuss darts dive bar that pairs the game with music and signature cocktails.

@tttmcr / Instagram

There’s also a wide selection of drinks available for guests to sip while they play, with happy hour offers including £15 bottles of prosecco and £5 cocktails every Wednesday.

And now, the venue has combined its love of both ping-pong, darts and booze with the launch of its ‘Beat The Bartender’ competition.

Every Thursday night, guests are given the opportunity to double their round for the price of one by taking on one of the bartenders in a game of ping pong or darts. If they win, they get their next round on the house.

@tttmcr / Instagram

Speaking previously to the MEN, owner Jamie Scahill explained the inspiration behind the unusual concept, saying it actually came from a ‘drunken conversation in Dr Pong in Berlin’.

He said: “We had plans to open the ping-pong room and needed ideas for the Saturday night, and came up with the idea of combining the three together with a free party every week.

“I think because it’s off the beaten track a little bit it takes a bit more effort to find and we have interesting events mixed with some fine DJs and good booze.”

Beat The Bartender is available every Thursday – just ask your friendly bartender for more details.

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NEW OPENING: A giant bar where you can do karaoke with a live band is coming to Deansgate

The bar will be a spot to ‘eat, drink, watch live sport, play and party all under one roof’

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Deansgate is set to welcome a brand new sports bar complete with twenty screens, an outdoor terrace, live bands and karaoke next month.

Box – an already well known bar in Leeds city centre – will be taking over two floors in a building down Deansgate, just a stone’s throw away from Spinningfields. 

The bar will be showing an array of sport including football, cricket and boxing and, unlike other sports bars of its nature, will also offer live entertainment including ‘bandeoke’, where customers can take over the mic and join a live band on stage. 

@theboxbaruk / Instagram

@theboxbaruk / Instagram

For more on the entertainment front, there will be two 21-foot European Shuffleboard tables, twenty state-of-the-art television screens and a busy events programme of live apres-ski style bands and DJs every Thursday, Friday and Saturday. 

There will also be an extensive drinks menu, including beer tanks filled with fresh Budvar, delivered weekly from the Czech Republic, and cocktails such as pornstar martinis and espresso martinis on tap, alongside cocktail steins and four-litre beer towers.

The bar comes courtesy of Arc Inspirations, the company behind existing Manchester sites Banyan and Manahatta. 

Martin Wolstencroft, CEO of Arc Inspirations, said: “We’re delighted to finally be introducing our BOX brand to Manchester for its much-anticipated launch.

@theboxbaruk / Instagram

@theboxbaruk / Instagram

“It’s exciting to be opening the doors next month to guests, especially after what’s been a challenging time for everyone.

“We’re confident the good folk of Manchester will enjoy BOX’s high-energy experience and overall, come to us for some great fun.

“The bar will also create seventy new local jobs for the local community, and we’re keen to hear from people interested in working in a fast-growing, dynamic company.”

Box Manchester is set to open its doors at some point in November – head over to their website and Instagram page for news and updates.  

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