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50 things to do this summer

July / August summer holiday.

Just because it’s summer holidays for the kids, doesn’t mean they get to have all the fun! We have looked around and put some great things together as a family, with friends or just on your own if you fancy some time out. From festivals to yoga, food to theatre, something for everyone is right here. So, what you waiting for? Go make it a summer to remember and enjoy every day as it comes. 

THE GREAT OUTDOORS:

Animals of Althorp Exhibition, Monday 1st July – Saturday 31st August, Althorp House. 

Running over the House’s open season, Althorp have partnered with Redwings Horse Sanctuary and will be bringing a new exhibition where you will discover and learn about the never-previously-told story of Althorp’s many animals and the mark they left upon the House’s history. Every ticket purchased online with the code REDWINGS, Althorp will donate £1 to the charity.

Interactive Northampton Tour, Saturday 20th July – Sunday 15th September, Northampton.

Think you know Northampton? Think again. Looking Glass Theatre are holding a bunch of interactive tours where they take you around places in Northampton and fill you in with all the history and happenings, leaving you feeling well educated to show off to all your friends. With different themes and locations at a great price, your kids and you will love discovering Northampton.

Outdoor Beach, Tuesday 23rd July – Saturday 31st August, Market Square. 

Held in the heart of Northampton Town, this outdoor beach is a great place to kids to enjoy an hour or two. You can watch from the deck chairs surrounding before riding some of the rides on the square.

Silverstone Classic, Friday 26th July – Sunday 28th July, Silverstone. 

A jam packed weekend perfect for all the family with something to do for everyone. From motor racing to live music, auctions to funfair, no matter what time of day you visit, there will be something fab to do. We recently attended The Grand Prix and Silverstone is just a brilliant venue for a weekend of kicking back. Highly recommend.

Northampton Fun Colour Rush 2019, Sunday 28th July, Abington Park. 

Run, walk, dance or however else you choose, around the UK’s biggest and most colourful 5k tour at the scenic Abington Park. Bringing a great summer atmosphere with good music and grab your exclusive fun colour rush tee before you start. With discounts for families and large teams, what better way to exercise?

Fishing Tutorial, Tuesday 30th July, Stanwick Lakes.

Perfect for a family day out, sit by the lake and be taught how to catch some fish like a pro. Great for all skills, beginner to experienced, no matter what you know already, Phil Dunn is sure to teach you a few new tips and tricks.

Wilder Arts, Tuesday 30th July, Stanwick Lakes.

Running on a bunch of dates through the holidays, your kids can go crazy with paint and all things arty as they create their own masterpiece, painting a ceramic pot, perfect to keep as a memory or give as a gift. Check out their other dates to on their website.

Wednesday Fun, 31st July, Castle Ashby Gardens. 

Every Wednesday over the summer holidays, kids can be entertained for a few hours with a different activity every week kicking off with face painting. There will also be crazy golf, animated magical moments and plus many more on the weeks to come.

Pond Dipping, Wednesday 31st July, Stanwick Lakes.

Held every Wednesday through the holidays, you and your kids can explore the lakes and discover the creatures that live beneath the lakes, all hosted by the knowledgeable and friendly rangers of the lakes.

Toddler Time, Thursday 1st August, Sulgrave Manor.

Before the manor opens their doors to the public, you can let your children enjoy play, explore and enjoy nature in the beautiful grounds. Including is a hot drink cordial and biscuit for the little ones with tea and cake on sale for you to enjoy. 

WingeWonders, Saturday 3rd August, Stanwick Lakes. 

Doug Goddard, a butterfly expert will be taking you on a guided tour through the beautiful lakes to discover all the flying creatures that fly around. From butterflies to dragonflies you will discover and learn all about the beauty of them, as you take in the scenic views.

Bands in the Park, Sunday 4th August, Abington Park. 

Spend a summer Sunday in the beautiful Abington Park as you listen to the Milton Keynes Brass Band play some tracks and make the park come alive. Sit by the bandstand, grab some nibbles and drink and soak up the sun, if it decides to show of course. There are other great bands on, other dates so be sure to check out the event page for more details.

Heritage Activities, Monday 5th August – Thursday 8th August, Market Square. 

To celebrate Northampton’s shoe heritage, there are heritage focused days full of activities including a fun catwalk show, bus tours and theatrical muster tours taking place on multiple times across the dates. On 17th August there will be an interactive heritage quest.

Delapre by the Sea, Monday 5th August – Sunday 11th August, Delapre Abbey. 

Who says you have to travel hours to go to the sea? Delapre are holding a week where the sea comes to you, where you can enjoy a giant sandpit, pony rides plus a whole lot more to keep you and the whole family entertained.

Storytelling in the Garden, Tuesday 6th August, Kelmarsh Hall. 

A professional storyteller will share stories of fun and adventure in the beautiful garden at Kelmarsh Hall, a perfect spot for a day to escape into a land of magic and adventure. Bring a blanket with you to enjoy a picnic and spot of great food from Walled Garden.

National Playday, Wednesday 7th August, Wicksteed Park. 

What better way to celebrate national playday by letting your kids run wild on the great selection of activities for them to enjoy all day. This year promises to be bigger and better and what’s best is, it’s all free.

80’s v 90’s Garden Party, Saturday 10th August, The Old White Hart. 

Spend the day dancing and singing to old classics, from pop hits like the Spice Girls to electronic 80’s like Madonna. With a face paint station and best fancy dress competition, what better way to throw it back to our youth ey?!

Medieval Mayhem, Saturday 10th August, Abington Park Museum. 

Held at the stunning museum of Abington Park, experience a live medieval battle and drill and what it was like to live in the medieval days. There will be medieval music and entertainment and activities throughout the day to enjoy.

Bands in the Park, Sunday 11th August, Rockingham Road Pleasure Park. 

Spend an afternoon in the great outdoors, listening to the very best of local bands who will be playing in the Victorian styled band stand built in 1936. Donations will be going to Cransley Hospice.  

Sunset Yoga, Sunday 11th August. Holdenby House. 

What better way to do yoga and relax than in the beautiful grounds of Holdenby House, where you will begin the day with a tour of the grounds, walking through Grad 1 gardens, Elizabeth Gardens and more. Then onto a relaxing yoga session on the grounds followed by some tea and cake.

Heritage and High Gate Tea, Thursday 22nd August, Wicksteed Park.  

Set on three dates, head to Wicksteed Park to discover more about the heritage of the park with guided tour and short talks to fill you in on all the history. After, indulge in a high tea with cream scones & finger sandwiches served with tea of course.  

FOOD & DRINK:

StrEAT Food, Friday 26th July, Wootton Sports Fields. 

Foodies will love this pop-up family friendly street food event, a chance for you to try new and exciting flavours whilst enjoying a drink and live music.

July Showcase, Friday 26th July, Majestic Wine. 

Say hello to the weekend by spending an evening with Majestic at their July showcase, letting you try and sample some of their finest wines customers can’t seem to get enough of. Enjoy and be educated whilst also learning all about the flavours and what’s the best one for your taste buds.

Spanish Garden Party, Saturday 27th July, Brampton Halt. 

From huge pans of paella and a bunch of delicious tapas with jugs of gawjus sangria, get a taste of Spain right here where they will have live music and a raffle to raise funds for Cynthia Spencer.

Friday Night Music, Friday 2nd August, Chilli Village. 

What’s the best thing to enjoy a great tasting meal and drink with? Company of course, but live music makes it even better. Mark Wright and his band will be keeping you and your party entertained as you dine out and soak up the exuberant atmosphere, oh and they’re taking requests all night so get yourself up there.

Bite Street, Friday 2nd August – Saturday 3rd August, Duston Mill.

Food and drink lovers, this one’s for you. The great tasting street food event is back and is bursting with exciting, delicious flavours of a whole bunch of food and drinks, with music and great things to do. There’s always a great atmopshere, and a perfect way to spend a summer evening.

Gin & Jazz, Sunday 4th August, Brampton Halt. 

Is this the perfect way to spend a summers day? Sat in an outside bar, with over 30 gins to choose from, a bbq offering great tasting food and live music from One night stand who will be in charge of the summer jazz from 4:30pm, so clear your diary’s and enjoy one of Northampton’s best loved pubs at its finest.

Gin Tasting Afternoon Tea, Monday 12th August – Sunday 18th August, Highgate House.

What better to enjoy afternoon tea week than a gin tasting afternoon tea in one of Northampton’s most beautiful houses. You will have a selection of gins to try, finger sandwiches, cakes macarons and tarts and scones, cream and jam. There is also loose-leaf tea or freshly ground coffee to enjoy if you’re the designated driver.

Unicorns & Rainbows Afternoon Tea, Sunday 18th August, Bread and Pullet. 

Raising money for The Lewis Foundation, this is a fun and colourful afternoon tea date perfect for the kids. There will be some great cakes to try and glitter just about everywhere. Fancy dress is most definitely advised.

Bottomless Brunch, Saturday 24th August, The Sun Inn. 

Collaborating with The Sun Inn in Hardingstone, The Snapper Shack brings a lobster and prosecco themed bottomless brunch, full of great tasting street food and of course a range of booze. With an after party including a BBQ and live music, this is a perfect way to kick off the bank holiday.

Wine & Vine Festival, Sunday 25th August, New Lodge Vineyard. 

Fancy a day sampling gawjus wines, flavoursome cheeses and tasty rustic BBQ food? Course you do. The Vineyard is hosting their bi-annual festival, a day for you to see firsthand what it’s like on a vineyard. If you’re not a wine lover, don’t worry you can sample some beers, ciders and soft drinks. With live music also, this is a perfect excuse to drink this summer.

Innocence at June Plum, Saturday 31st August, June Plum.  

Not only does June Plum serve great tasting food, but they are also hosting great events like this one where you get to sample some incredible food and drink and enjoy live music from Innocence, as well as a karaoke night to finish it off.  

FESTIVALS: 

Grow Festival 2019, Saturday 27th – Sunday 28th July, Corby. 

Returning this year, the Grow Festival is back with the theme of food. Expect great things to do, lots to eat and drink and a whole day of fun filled family entertainment with live music throughout the weekend.

Yardley Fest, Friday 2nd August – Sunday 4th August, Red Lion.

Didn’t make it to Glasto or just not that type of festival type. No bother, this local festival, Yardley Fest, is a great excuse to spend the weekend drinking with friends and family. You can relax listening to live music, knocking back some drinkies as your kids run around. With locally sourced food, an ecofriendly ethos and local award winning ales and so much more, this is a definite go to.

Willowbrook Farm Festival, Saturday 3rd August, Willowbrook Farm. 

Bringing together music, theatre, art and the great outdoors, this fab farm festival is back for its 5th year with something for everyone and promising to be better than any years before. With weekend camping passes available, this makes for a great weekend for the family in the outdoors enjoying a summer weekend.

MK Green Fest, Saturday 3rd August, Campbell Park. 

Want to be greener fingered and learn all about sustainability, plastic free and how to be that little bit more ecofriendly. What better way to do it a festival? With stalls, workshops, spoken words, live music and lots to do and see, this is a great day out that is guaranteed to make you think twice about all things eco.

Prosecco and Gin Festival, Friday 9th August – Saturday 10th August, Peterborough Cathedral Grounds.  

Set in the beautiful grounds of Peterborough Cathedral, this festival is for all your tipple lovers who like to sample and try new great gins with over 60 to choose from! There will be a bar for wines and prosecco’s and samples to try also. You can get included in early bird ticket, a free drink token, branded event glass and free booklet containing tasting notes, serving suggestions and cocktail ideas.  

Blisworth Festival 2019, Saturday 10th August –Sunday 11th August, Blisworth. 

No matter who comes along, you, the kids or your four-legged friends, everyone is welcome to enjoy a fun-filled festival with a great atmosphere. From stalls to live music, entertainment to rides, you can enjoy a lovely day in the village and see the beautiful village hall and chapel. 

Ecton Fest, Sunday 11th August, Ecton Village Hall.

With live bands keeping you entertained all day, great value food and drink and hopefully rays of sunshine, Ecton Fest is raising money for Northamptonshire Careers, who provide support for voluntary charities all over the county at this outdoor music festival.

Summer Fest, Sunday 11th August, The Lake View.  

A free entry event for the whole family. Packed full of things to do from live singers and entertainment to a variety of stalls to browse. Kids can enjoy the inflatables and go-karts and there will be some amazing food to discover from BBQ to Indian.  

Billing’s Big Bonanza, Saturday 16th August – Sunday 17th August, Billing Aquadrome 

It’s back, and this year is the Balloon Festival’s 30th Anniversary, so expect it to be bigger and better than ever. A great weekend of family fun where all can enjoy something to do, see, try, taste, whatever it is you are guaranteed an action-packed day or two with live entertainment, stunt shows and food stalls to discover.  

Rushden Lakes Fest (for second Birthday), Saturday 27th/28th July, Rushden Lakes.

We’ve written a piece all about it here!

Alderton Art Festival, Saturday 31st August – Sunday 1st September, St Margarets Church. 

Returning for their 43rd annual art festival with proceeds going to Saint Margaret’s Church. Walk around and take in a beautiful selection of artwork and paintings from more than 30 local artists plus a bunch of unframed original paintings and prints. There will also be a People’s Choice Award for the best picture.  

SHOWS, THEATRE AND FILM: 

The Glory of Music Hall, Wednesday 24th July, The Deco. 

Enjoy a show full of live music celebrating everything English, with sing-a-long songs and humour throughout. There will also be afternoon tea served at the end of the performance including sandwiches, cakes and other sweet treats.

The Last of the Pelican, Thursday 25th July – Friday 26th July, Derngate.  

Telling the story of four sisters who are fighting to divide their mothers’ home between them. Creators of the acclaimed Education, Education, Education, The Wardrobe Ensemble are back with their humour and great characters to tackle the challenging issues of loss.

Holiday Projects, Monday 29th July – Friday 2nd August, Royal & Derngate.

Fun drama-based Holiday Projects are bringing their love of drama to Derngate and hosting a week of drama-based activities for children ages 4 to 13. From Wind in the Willow’s for children aged 4 to 7 and Musical in a Week for children aged 8 to 13, your children will enjoy a range of creative drama-based activities with fully DBS checked professional theatre leaders.

Comedy Club, Thursday 1st August, Picturedrome. 

A night of laughs and giggles at the Picturedrome for their comedy club, full of great acts including Andrew Bird who has supported Michael McIntyre, Lauren Pattison who has appeared on Comedy Central and Jamie Allerton who went to Northampton University.

Mamma Mia Singalong, Saturday 3rd August, Picturedrome.

Back by popular demand after their great singalong night to Dirty Dancing, Picturedrome are bringing the classic Mamma Mia for you to enjoy and sing to followed by a 70’s/80’s after party.

A Quiet Place, Sunday 4th August, Stanwick Lakes. 

Fancy a scare by the lakes? Stanwick Lakes are bringing their outdoor cinema experience back this weekend with the horror / thriller “A Quiet Place”, so as the sunsets around you see how long you can keep your drink in hand with this film bound to make you jump and scream.

Small Island, Thursday 8th August, Castle Theatre. 

This Orange Prize-winning Novel by Andrea Levy is coming to life on the Castle Theatre stage where it will all be filmed. It tells the story of Small Island that embarks on a journey from Jamaica to Britain through the Second World War.  

Into the Groove, Friday 9th August, Castle Theatre. 

Get ready to vogue as you experience a production dedicated to the one of the bestselling female artists of all time, the legend Madonna. This is a colourful, exciting and dazzling production, featuring all the hits, some you love and some you may have forgotten.

A Star is Born, Friday 9th August, Boughton House.  

If you love it just as much as us, or haven’t seen what the fuss is about, A Star is Born is being shown at the beautiful Boughton House in their lovely grounds. As the sunsets around you, soak up the atmosphere with glass in hand as you kick back, relax and enjoy. This event is brought to you by the amazing guys at Luna Flix.  

We Love Little Mix, Saturday 10th August, Castle Theatre.  

If your kids, or even you love a dance and sing along to the talented girl band Little Mix, experience the best tribute act where it will be all singing, all dancing, with great costumes and a whole lot of fun.  

Sam and Mark’s on the Road Show, Wednesday 14th August, Castle Theatre.  

Remember the TV sensation Sam and Mark who got everyone shouting boggies here there and everywhere? Well, the boys are bringing a live show this summer full of jokes, humor and sketches, great to keep the kids laughing.  

TopGun, Friday 16th August, Wicksteed Park.  

Wicksteed Park are holding their outdoor cinema experience this summer with TopGun in their 147-acre park with snacks and drinks available. There are standard and VIP Tickets available and the film starts just after sunset.  

Bohemian Rhapsody, Saturday 17th August, Wicksteed Park. 

If you’re one of the very few that hasn’t seen it yet, or just love it so much you want to see it again, Bohemian Rhapsody is being shown at Wicksteed Park in their outdoor cinema experience. A perfect way to spend a summer evening with loved ones, drink and snacks in the lovely grounds.  

10 Things I Hate About You, Saturday 17th August, Walled Garden.  

Outdoor cinema experience Luna Flix are bringing the classic film to Walled Garden in Rushden, where you can kick back with a glass in hand, snacks ready to go and the sun setting around you.  

Play in a Week, Monday 19th August – Friday 23rd August, Castle Theatre.  

Are you kids budding actors and actresses? Or just fancy doing something a little different this summer? Then Castle Theatre are bringing a week filled with drama activities learning skills and recreating James and the Giant Peach live on stage.  

Heritage and High Gate Tea, Thursday 22nd August, Wicksteed Park. 

Set on three dates, head to Wicksteed Park to discover more about the heritage of the park with guided tour and short talks to fill you in on all the history. After, indulge in a high tea with cream scones & finger sandwiches served with tea of course.

Moto GP 2019, Friday 23rd August – Sunday 25th August, Silvertone

With glamping and standard camping options and great packages to choose, experience the Moto GP and the great circuit at Silverstone in the best way possible.

Althrop Chilrden’s Week, Saturday 24th August – Friday 30th August, Althorp House. 

Bring your kids along for a fun-filled week of learning all about the history of Althorp House with a bunch of games, interactive workshops and activities for all your family to enjoy. With face painting, balloon modelling plus a whole lot more, learning all about history couldn’t be more fun.

Fox-tot, Tuesday 27th August – Sunday 1st September, Derngate 

Telling a story of a fox sent on an adventure, exploring the world and learning new things all seen through the eyes of the other creatures he meets. Full of adventure and fun, your kids will love this show, especially if their animal lovers. Under 12 months go free.  

A Star is Born, Friday 30th August, Castle Ashby. 

Enjoy a summer evening watching A Star is Born, drink in hand, as the sunsets around you in the beautiful grounds of Castle Ashby.  

Bohemian Rhapsody, Saturday 31st August, Castle Ashby.  

Watch one of the most successful films of the year in the gawjus grounds of Castle Ashby as you spend a summer evening with friends or family, drink in hand, ready for the beautiful sunset.  

LIFESTYLE AND WELLBEING:

The Artisan Baby Co. Fair, Sunday 28th July, Delapre Abbey. 

A new and exciting baby fair full of unique, artisan products for your babes or tots. A handpicked bunch of independent retailers will be showcasing what they offer whilst you enjoy delicious artisan coffee. VIP options are available with early entry and goodie bag.

Wedding Open Evening, Thursday 1st August, Woodside Hotel.

See for yourself why this hotel is a perfect place to host a wedding as they invite you in to explore the hotel as you enjoy a glass of prosecco and get to taste their delicious canapes. If you or someone you know is searching for a venue, here is one to add to the list of options.

Launch Party, Friday 2nd August, The Sound Bar.

You are invited to the opening night of the newest addition to Wellingborough’s nightlife. The Sound Bar are hosting their launch night, full of glitz and glam, great music and even greater drinks. Welcomed with a glass of prosecco, enjoy a night off and let your hair down with your girlfriends, you deserve it.

1940’s Fashion Parade, Saturday 3rd August – Sunday 4th August, Vintage Retreat. 

Love fashion? Love vintage? Then make sure you head over to the fab Vintage Retreat for their 1940’s Fashion Parade ran over the weekend. Expect great outfits in a lovely vintage setting all for Harborough at War.

Jewellery Workshop, Sunday 4th August, The Retro Room at Vintage Retreat. 

Consider yourself a little creative? Then enjoy a workshop where you can let your imagination run wild as you learn to create some great looking jewellery. From a bunch of colours and designs to choose from, you can focus on different aspects to create something beautiful.

Summer Landscapes Painting Course, Thursday 8th August, Kelmarsh Hall. 

Kelmarsh Hall are hosting a series of courses led by Sam Wadsworth, where you will be taught how to paint beautiful landscapes using interesting techniques and methods. Sam is a professional artist with many years of experience however this event is open to all from beginners to experts.  

Little Future Readers, Thursday 8th August – Sunday 11th August, Grovesnor Shopping. 

From 11am – 4pm, a free event where your kids can explore a bunch of activities such as creating your own story board in the Story Lab to being able to test some of the best toys around at the moment from The Entertainer.  

Althrop Craft Fair, Friday 9th August – Sunday 11th August, Althorp House. 

A lovely long weekend of browsing a great selection of stands with activities, shopping opportunities and of course great tasting food and drink in the Althorp Café. Also, book in for an hour workshop ran by crafting experts to learn how to make your very own candles and flower arranging.

Northampton Vegan Fair, Saturday 10th August, Park Inn. 

Vegan or wanting to see what it’s all about? This is a great event for you to discover the world of veganism and see, try and discover some amazing products to eat and drink plus cosmetics, jewelry and books and a whole lot more, all vegan! With goodie bag packages available, you will receive a bag full of vegan goodness.

Sunset Yoga, Sunday 11th August. Holdenby House. 

What better way to do yoga and relax than in the beautiful grounds of Holdenby House, where you will begin the day with a tour of the grounds, walking through Grad 1 gardens, Elizabeth Gardens and more, Than onto a relaxing yoga session on the grounds followed by some tea and cake.

Sunset Yoga, Wednesday 14th August, Rushden Lakes. 

Rushden Lakes isn’t just the perfect spot to shop, it’s a great place to relax and do some yoga on the boardwalk. A beautiful place for you to time out and enjoy a spot of you time, as Magazine Heaven team with @yogagucci and bring you a yoga class like no other. There is also another one on Wednesday 28th, at the same time of 7pm – 8:30pm.

Wedding Fair, Sunday 18th August, Wetone Manor. 

Looking for a place to get married? Westone Manor is hosting a day for you to look around, explore and discover why it’s a great venue to host your wedding. You can find out exactly what’s on offer and speak to friendly staff to help plan the perfect day.  

Yoga Breakfast, Sunday 18th August, Magazine Heaven. 

What better way to kick off the day with a spot of yoga at Magazine Heaven, Rushden Lakes. You will enjoy a relaxing meditation and yoga session followed by a delicious brunch of tropical fruits, granola pots, homemade vegan banana bread and avocado bruschetta.

Celebrity Styling Workshop, Thursday 29th August, Magazine Heaven. 

Fancy getting some insider tips and tricks from a talented and successful celebrity stylist. Ms Campbell will be hosting another styling workshop where you can get some great knowledge and receive a personal styling session, goodie bag and the chance to get a ticket to London fashion week this September.

Vocal Workshop, Friday 30th August, Magazine Heaven. 

Sophie Garner who has released four studio albums, coached on The Voice UK and ran three successful choirs is bringing her talent to Magazine Heaven to run a 3-hour singing workshop to build your confidence and unleash your inner singing voice.

Find more ideas here

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