Another bank holiday weekend? We’ve been really, really ridiculously spoilt lately regarding days off work – but don’t question it, simply pick and choose from our handy round-up of the best free things to do and just truly embrace it.

Blackjack Brewtap #2 (pictured)
Blackjack Brewery opens its doors again this weekend for another Brewtap, promising plenty of booze, food and tunes. Quench your thirst with beer from Wild Beer Co., Arbor, Harbour, Moor, Siren, Weirdbeard, Redchurch and more, before chowing down on food from Honest Crust Pizza on Friday, The Moocher on Saturday and TaKaRa rounding things off for the Sunday. With music from Goff and his friends from vintage den Wowie Zowie, expect anything from psychedelic tones and mellow folk to blues and ‘delicious tear-inducing’ soul to soundtrack the three-day spectacular.
Fri 23 – Sun 25 May, Blackjack Brewery, 36 Gould Street, M4 4RN, 6pm – 10pm, FREE,

Open For Business and Collider at MOSI
Inject some art and culture into a weekend that will no doubt be on the slightly boozy side with the launch of a new exhibition at MOSI. Open for Business is a photography exhibition exploring British manufacturing and industry, and features the work of nine Magnum photographers – Jonas Jonas Bendiksen, Stuart Franklin, Bruce Gilden, David Hurn, Peter Marlow, Martin Parr, Mark Power, Chris Steele-Perkins and Alessandra Sanguinetti – who visited over 100 workplaces in the UK to capture traditional handmade crafts, intelligent automation, research labs and more to highlight the daily struggles within how businesses operate. MOSI’s long-awaited Collider exhibition also opens this Friday – read our full preview here and head down to kill two birds, as it were.
Fri 23 May – Sun 3 Aug (Collider exhibition Fri 23 May – Sun 28 Sep), Museum of Science and Industry, Liverpool Road, Castlefield, M3 4FP, 10am – 5pm, FREE entry (Collider exhibition £7),

Lowry Outlet Food Festival
In the age of the common foodie it seems we’re all suckers for good grub, and what better way to celebrate all the edible goodness in the world than with the Lowry Outlet Festival? Bringing together all the best names in the industry, including cheeky Italian Gennaro Contaldo, top mum-crush James Martin and Irish TV chef Rachel Allen, the weekend looks set to sate our hunger with live demos, over 120 food and drink stalls, and pop-up eateries. A live music stage will also keep things flowing, with performances from up-and-coming solo artist Ella Shaw, Salford indie boys The Nankeens, Liverpool ukulele band Ukebox, steel drum maestros Pantasy, the wonderfully bluesy Dr Butler’s Hatstand Medicine Band and more.
Sat 24 – Mon 26 May, FREE, Lowry Outlet, Lowry Outlet, Salford Quays, M50 3AH, Sat 10am – 7pm, Sun – Mon 10am – 6pm, FREE,

The Last Waltz screening at Band on the Wall
The folk at Band on the Wall are good at totally nailing Sundays. With their regular Acoustic Bhuna nights (every first and third Sunday of the month), it’s evident that Sundays should be all about laid-back fun with friends, a few tipples and often a hearty dose of good music. This week follows that foolproof formula as it welcomes the first of BotW’s Sunday Screenings, promising iconic music films in one of Manchester oldest and most-loved venues. They’ll be kicking things off with a bang with Martin Scorsese’s documentary about The Band and their final performance back in 1976 – and for hungry tums there will also be a gourmet rice ‘n’ three curry menu served up all evening.
Sun 25 May, Band on the Wall, 25 Swan Street, M4 5JZ, Doors open 5pm (screening starts 7pm), FREE,

Eighty Six & The Beagle Present Shawn Lee (Live) & J-Walk (Live)
Bank holidays at The Beagle are fast gaining a bit of a rep, as the doors are thrown open to welcome good tunes and chilled vibes to the Chorlton bar. This Sunday expect no less, as they welcome legendary musician and producer Shawn Lee, who has worked and collaborated with the likes of AM, Nino Mochella, Kelis and The Superimposers, to name just a few. Also on board is Martin Brew, who will be performing as J-Walk for the first time in a while to support the release of his second album – which has been 12 years coming. Both will be giving live performances and DJ sets, with the gaps filled by Jeffo, Jif, Rob Bright and TC of Eighty Six, so grab a pint, peruse The Beagle’s new Mexican-inspired menu before taking a pew and kicking back.
Sun 25 May, The Beagle, 456-458 Barlow Moor Road, Chorlton, M21 0BQ, 4pm – 12am, FREE,

Know of any upcoming free weekend events worth shouting about? Email jess at manchesterwire dot co dot uk with the deets.

Mon 26 May
Jess Hardiman
Published on:
Sun 25 May 2014