As organisations and venues become more and more well-practiced at running COVID-compliant events, there’s a wealth of things to keep you busy in Manchester as August draws to a close. We’ve rounded up the best free things to do in Manchester this week, including a screening of Gus Van Sant’s teen drama My Own Private Idaho at YES and a completely online Manchester Pride celebration over the bank holiday weekend.

My Own Private Idaho screening | YES | Wed 26 Aug | 7pm - 9pm

Above The Line cinema club have loads of free screenings of critically acclaimed and cult classic films hosted at YES, in the Pink Room. This week, they’re screening My Own Private Idaho, a loose adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry IV starring River Phoenix and Keanu Reeves and made in 1991. If you can’t make the Wednesday screening, they’re also showing it on Tuesday afternoon – and it’s well worth checking out the other films they have lined up too.

YES, 38 Charles Street, Manchester M1 7DB
Bat Walk | Clifton Country Park | Wed 26 Aug | 8pm - 9.45pm

The Rangers of Clifton Country Park are running a Bat Walk, giving you the chance to explore the woods and maybe even spot some night-time wildlife. Tickets are limited to two per household, and it’s completely free to attend, although you have the option of donating on the night to support Clifton Country Park.

Clifton Country Park, Clifton House Road, Clifton M27 6NG
Queer Contemporaries | AIR Gallery | Thu 27 Aug | 6pm - 8pm

This new exhibition from AIR Gallery in Altrincham showcases a selection of contemporary LGBTQIA+ artists from a variety of different artistic disciplines including painting, sculpture, film, performance and drag. Supported by Superbia (Manchester Pride’s year-round calendar of events), the exhibition brings queer representation in the art world to centre stage and definitely features some artists to watch in the coming years.

AIR Gallery, 30 Grosvenor Road, Altrincham WA14 1LD
The Laughięnda Comedy Night | Thu 27 Aug | 7pm - 10pm

This free comedy night taking place at Lions Den Bar in Deansgate – just 5 minutes from the historic Hacięnda itself – will feature loads of local comics keen to get back in front of a live audience. It takes place outside and there’ll be safety measures in effect to ensure the event is compliant with government guidelines. If you’ve been missing live comedy make sure not to miss this brand new comedy night in the heart of the city.

Lions Den Bar, 253 Deansgate Mews, Manchester M3 4EN
The Greatest Showman | Stretford Mall | Sat 29 Aug | 1pm - 4pm

For their family-friendly cinema event, Place Maker Events will screen The Greatest Showman, the perfect fun singalong movie for an afternoon out. Tickets need to be booked in advance to ensure COVID compliance, and there will be strict guidelines in place to ensure everyone has a completely safe day out. Food and drinks will be available on the day, and dressing up is encouraged for both children and adults – there are even prizes up for grabs for best dressed!

Stretford Mall, Chester Road, Stretford M32 9BD
Alternative Manchester Pride 2020 | Sat 29 Aug | 10pm - late

This Alternative Manchester Pride Festival offers loads of content and events for those planning to celebrate Pride this year entirely from home, taking place across all three days of the Bank Holiday Weekend. There’ll be content across multiple channels, including online livestreams, radio performances and interviews, and social media content along with much more. Activism and community will be at the heart of celebrations – but there’ll be plenty of arts, culture and partying too, so make sure not to miss out on this brand new alternative format for Pride.

Mon 24 Aug - Sun 30 Aug
Amy Callaghan
Published on:
Mon 24 Aug 2020