Things to do in Manchester this week: 18th – 24th August 2017

Before the year disappears and it's 2018, why don't you get up off your arse and do something...

By Ben Brown | 18 August 2017

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It feels almost like it was yesterday that it was the beginning of 2017 and everyone was looking forward to a year without so many celebrity deaths. Well, the year is hurtling towards September at a blistering rate – it will be Christmas in no time and I’ll be sat at home with a face like thunder while watching Home Alone 2 for the 33rd time. Before the year disappears and it’s 2018, why don’t you get up off your arse and do something…

Power Up! @ Museum of Science & Industry
Friday 11th – 28th August 2017
Working out how to finish the first level of ‘Yogi Bear & Friends in Greed Monster’ on the Commodore 64 was, and still is, the most frustrating gaming experience I have ever had. I’m usually pretty good at that kind of stuff but this game was an absolute killer. In fact – I suspect that the programmers couldn’t be bothered making a 2nd level and so made it impossible to progress. Bastards.
Luckily the game is too crap to be featured at Power Up! at MOSI – a collection of over 160 consoles and games, ranging from old school arcades right up to the newest of the new. There will definitely be some Mario flapping around, but I sincerely hope there’s some GoldenEye on the N64. I’m going on Friday night so I’ll check and let you know. I suggest the Adult sessions so there’s no kids there annoying you.

Adult-only evening session (25 August at 19.00–22.00) — £10

MOSI, Great Western Warehouse, First Floor, Temporary Exhibition Gallery


The Secret Garden @ Fletcher Moss Botanical Gardens
Friday 18th – Sunday 20th August
Heartbreak Productions are back in Fletcher Moss Gardens this weekend and this time they are belting out an absolute classic – The Secret Garden. It’s outdoor theatre in the park, so there is every chance that the production will be interrupted by a homeless fella and a can of Special Brew but to be honest – that can make the whole experience more rewarding.
Be sure to take an umbrella, a seat, a blanket and enough olives to feed the cast of the Godfather and you will have a wonderful time. It’s not too far from Didsbury Village either so you can grab a pint somewhere afterwards eh.

Buy Tickets


Ultimate Power @ The Ritz
Friday 18th August, 11pm
Many of you will have noticed (well, the 3 people who read this) that I put Ultimate Power in this round up every single time that it is on in Manchester. You may be inclined to think that I’m getting paid from them, or that whenever I go they sort me out with some drinks or something. I wish!

I mention the night out of the kindness of my heart, and also because it’s one of the best nights you can have in the city. Screaming out Bonnie Tyler’s ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart’ while waving around an inflatable guitar as a massive shower of glitter descends on the dancefloor will be just one of the highlights. Get dressed up too you loser.

Buy Tickets

O2 Ritz Manchester, Whitworth St W, Manchester M1 5NQ
0161 714 4140


Noasis @ The Ruby Lounge
Saturday 19th August, 7pm
Each year it seems increasingly unlikely that Oasis will get back together. What with Liam shouting his mouth off about Noel at every opportunity, probably so he can get a few extra column inches in the MEN to promote a new single, while Noel just wears a leather jacket and hangs out with Dale Winton and Ed Sheeran in the Ivy, glugging red wine.

So instead of sitting in your house, nervously waiting for the brothers to kiss, make-up and release another ‘Live Forever’, you might as well head down to The Ruby Lounge this Saturday to catch Noasis – probably one of the best Oasis tribute acts out there. They’re almost as good as my mum wearing a parka at the Bull’s Head Karaoke singing ‘Wonderwall’ – which they should be proud of.

Buy Tickets

The Ruby Lounge, 28-34 High St, Manchester M4 1QB
0161 834 1392


Sam’s House Party @ Garage Bar
Saturday 19th August, 2pm – 11pm
Growing up in the 90’s there are a load of things that stick out in my mind about that decade. Biggest of them is watching Euro ‘96 when Gazza scored that goal against Scotland. I immediately wanted a blonde short back and sides just like him and so went to the hairdressers with my mum a few days later. It all ended in tears of course, when it didn’t look exactly like Gazza’s – and I suppose that might be where my mis-trust of hairdressers still stems from.

Any other memories of the 90’s are all packed up in there – and a visit to Sam’s House Party on Saturday will likely bring them all flooding back. It’s a 90’s themed party at Garage in Spinningfields and will be a celebration of everything 90’s related. There’s 90’s tunes, a retro sweet stall, free pizza, pool and loads of 90’s clobber on show. It’s all for the Sam’s Gift Charity too – so when you’re spewing your guts up at 11pm – you can be confident you’ve done some good in the world.

Buy Tickets

Garage Bar, 36 Bridge St, Manchester M3 3BT
0161 359 5266



Taste The Diff’rence Hiphop All-Dayer & BBQ @ Oddest Bar
Saturday 19th August, 2pm – 2am
This is definitely something my mate Ste would be very much interested in. Mostly the Hip Hop to be fair, although the BBQ may be of interest to him if they would let him heat up his Dixy Chicken meal on it. Hip Hop crew Taste the Diff’rence will be presenting a full 12 hour marathon all-dayer, featuring some cracking hip hop, funk and ska as well as live bands and DJs throughout the day.
The list of people there is massive, and I don’t know 97% of them so it’s not very helpful for me to just list them. Instead I recommend you check out their website, or better still – just bloody go down to Oddest on Saturday and check it out. Save us all some time.

Oddest Bar, 414-416 Wilbraham Rd, Manchester M21 0SD
0161 860 7515


Elvis Lives @ MOJO
Saturday 19th August, 8pm
Elvis is so ingrained within society that even kids as young as 2 know who he is and imitate his dancing and weird lip shaking. Even at school in the mid-90’s in Oldham, a place so far removed from the glamour of Graceland that we were still using outdoor toilets and shopping with ration books – we had a kid called Steven King who would get up on the desk when the teacher was out and sing ‘Return to Sender’ while we chanted. I suppose you could class it as bullying now though. Ah well.
Mojo’s on the other hand are having an ‘Elvis Lives’ night on Saturday which promises to be jam-packed (like his doughnuts the chubby sod) with all things Elvis. Great if you’re a fan, slightly less great if you’re not. They will also be serving up Elvis-related food. Just don’t go snuffing it on the bog afterwards.

MOJO, 59 Bridge St, Manchester M3 3BQ
0845 611 8643


Buffalo Bourbon Cocktail Masterclass + Live Music Evening @ The Whiskey Jar
Tuesday 22nd August, 6.30pm
I’ve always associated Whiskey drinkers with either old blokes with leather-faces and a walnut dash Mercedes, or those blokes you see hanging around outside Affleck’s with a pair of Vans on and a Batman t-shirt. Or a Jack Daniels t-shirt. Either way, I’m sure I’d be proved completely wrong if I went to the Buffalo Trace Cocktail Masterclass this Tuesday at The Whiskey Jar.
With over 300 Whiskeys on offer, The Whiskey Jar is probably the best place in the city for the drink, and this night will aim to help you learn how to make bar quality cocktails at home. For £10 you will have a bit of education, so you can impress someone next time you have them round your gaff, as well as 2 cocktails – which I suppose is pretty decent for typical NQ prices.

The Whiskey Jar, 14 Tariff St, Manchester M1 2FF
0161 237 5686


E.T. The Extra Terrestrial @ The Oast House
Tuesday 22nd August, 7pm
Another week and another screening from the crew over at Oast House. The films are starting a little later now – at 7pm instead of 6.30pm – so try not to be late or you will miss the beginning. Miss the beginning of this week’s film, ET and you will be missing out on some seriously necessary information. I’ll let you know the beginning though just in case. The film starts with a big space battle involving aliens, and there is one alien that is flying a spaceship really well. That’s ET.

He manages to kill a load of other people, in cold blood you should understand, but unfortunately crash lands on Earth. Here, his insatiable thirst for the blood of humans (in particular the blood of children) helps give him the energy and drive in his quest to get home. I won’t ruin the rest for you. It’s good though. Especially at the end when you realise that he was dead all along.

The Oast House, The Avenue Courtyard, Spinningfields, Crown Square, Manchester M3 3AY
0161 829 3830