This Weekend: 25th, 26th & 27th August

It’s a busy weekend to finish the month of August, and before Belgian schools go back at the start of September. Here’s your GOOGLE MAP!

 

Friday

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The Mechelseplein

The Mechelsepleinfeesten take place on both theFriday and Saturday this weekend. This is a kid-friendly neighbourhood event, offering music, food, drinks and dance. The full list of events and happenings can be found on the event page on Facebook. On Friday it starts at 4pm.

Critical Mass holds their usually monthly cycle ride, starting from the Theaterplein at 6pm, so assemble then with your bike for this month’s Africa edition of the bike ride.

Also on Friday, Aper’eau is on Bolivarplaats from 5pm, with their usual offering of beers, wines and aperitifs – until midnight.

Saturday

The Mechelsepleinfeesten continue -again, from 4pm.

Jazztemblieft is a free Jazz festival taking place on the Godefrieduskaai, at the MAS museum, starting at 2 and continuing until midnight. It’s free and kid-friendly.

Sunday

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Cultuurmarkt flags on Meir

You may have noticed some red, white and blue flags hanging on Meir -these are for Cultuurmarkt which takes place in Antwerp today, in various locations around the city centre. There is a very varied and wide program for this day, including many exhibitions at city museums (most of which are open from 10 -5pm) as are other venues, including bars, theatres and businesses. Groenplaats, Meir, Grote Markt, Steenplein, Suikerrui and Wapper will all be busy with cultural activities, free performances and information. Check the Google map which indicates which arts area you can find out about at each of these locations. It is a chance to find out about the upcoming agendas of a huge number of musea, clubs, societies, theatres, music venues and organisations offering creative activities and performances in the coming months. There’s usually a lot to keep kids amused, including a trail to follow called Vliegroute -go to the hyperlink to download the card, which kids can get stamped as they go along, and eventually win a prize when they have collected stamps from completing fun activities.

Also for kids – Bar Noord is offering this free cooking workshop at 3pm for budding chefs aged 6-12. Mail lotte@dagvers.org to register your child.

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Lambermontmartre

Lambermontmartre will be holding their monthly art fair from midday, at Leopold de Waelplaats (near the Fine Art Museum) from midday, also with live music and food.

Yoyogi (part of ZvA) is back for Sundays in August -not just yoga, but music, games, workshops and other activities are on offer for free between 2- 7pm on the green at Rivierenhof.

The weather should be warm, and sometimes sunny with top temperatures of 24 – 25 degrees.

Miscellaneous

Wednesday 30th: don’t forget that on the last Wednesday of the month there is free museum entry.

Runners! You can register now for Race For The Cure which is a 6km run taking place on 24th September, in aid of Breast Cancer research and awareness.

Sportopia (Park Spoor Noord, in the Loods building) finishes this weekend (on the 27th)

Don’t forget to find me on social media, where additional events and locations are also posted:

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Instagram

Facebook (Events in Antwerp: in conjunction with London Calling)

Twitter

Pinterest

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The Big Fat Summer Post 2017

sun-159392_640This post covers the next month while I am on holiday (even bloggers need a break from time to time). The first section lists some ongoing activities, whilst the second section lists specific activities and events by date.

I’ll be back at the start of August -if you feel so inclined you can follow my #nessascityblogUSA adventures on Instagram

In the meantime, here are some Antwerp highlights which I am sorry to be missing   …

During or throughout July

ZVAflagFThe most useful thing to know is the Zomer van Antwerpen website, which lists all the special summer events provided by the City of Antwerp, including theatre performances, summer bars, live music and Cinema Urbana (outdoor cinema venue next to The Schelde, opens in August). You can also buy tickets for those events which are not free, but many are, as is access to the summer bars of course.  Zomerfabriek has a bit more of a clubby vibe to it, while the Zomerbar on Sloepenweg has a very broad appeal, and is probably better for younger kids -there’s a playground as well as an outdoor library there. Muziek in de Wijk is pretty much as the name (Music in the Neighbourhood) suggests -stages with live music on local squares or parks, and is free. Again, these are very much occasions for all ages and there are refreshments available. It’s a good chance to hear some local bands. Other summer bars which I really like are Bar Noord in Park Spoor Noord and Smokey Jo’s Cantina -both kid-friendly, also Bar Paniek right next to the water on the Kattendijkdok.

 

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Antwerp Summer Bars

Another special program of summer performances and music can be found at the Openlucht Theater (OLT) at Rivierenhof (Open Air Theatre) which is a really nice place to see a band on a summer’s evening. Order tickets via the site (some sell out quickly and more well known performers are already sold out) but there are also free shows on Fridays (search for Gratis Vrijdagen) .

And the View on The Zoo ferris wheel is on Astridplein throughout July

The Sinksenfoor (funfair) is open daily in Park Spoor Oost until 9th July.

For kids up to the age of 13, there is Speel-O-Rama in the Zuiderpershuis every week day for 2 euros per kid (17th July -11th August)

During summer Antwerp offers two open-air swimming pools which are now open! It is free to swim at Boekenberg, but there is a small entrance charge at the Linkeroever pool (it is also recommended that you have a 1 euro coin with you to use the lockers; and your A-kaart, if you have one).

Buurtpleintjes is an initiative from Stad Antwerpen offering free sporting activities on local squares around the city. Last year, my son really enjoyed a series of free basketball lessons on Sint Andriesplaats as part of this initiative. Start by checking here to see what’s on offer near you.

A grab-bag of events in order of date…

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Saturday July 1st You can join a ghostwalk for 7,50, starting at 7pm from Steen

Sunday 2nd July: Goegekregen in the Stadspark these are always big and very sociable. There’s pretty much nothing you can’t get on the cheap here -including- usually – a haircut.

Sunday 2nd July: First Sunday of the month means Sunday shopping in Antwerp

Weekend 1st & 2nd July: Opening of the Port of Antwerp water-bus route. Activities and entertainment on Steenplein from 9am

Weekend 1st & 2nd July: Ramblas ‘beach’ party on the Falconplein and nearby streets. Lots of sand, music, cocktails, kids’ fun, vintage & flea markets from 10 -6pm both days.

Friday July 7th: Aper’eau on Theaterplein, Drinks, snacks, DJs. From 5- midnight

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Saturday 8th July: Dancing in the Stadspark from 3pm – midnight. Fun, free, kid-friendly (at least for the earlier part of the party) Also Sunday 9th July

Sunday 9th July Muziek in de Wijk is on Krugerplein, Borgerhout from 2pm

Tuesday 11th July: Vlaanderen Feest Dag celebrating Flanders and the Flemish Community –check here for the program in Antwerp (note that there are also events in the days running up to the 11th of July itself). There are kids shows on Groenplaats from midday until 6pm (Studio 100). The Feest Dag finishes on Grotemarkt with a party at night from 7.30.

Saturday 15th July: Free Salsa dancing at Bar Noord (Park Spoor Noord) from 6.30pm

Sunday 16th July: Swan Market is on Grote Markt from 11am -6pm (accessories, food, music, clothes, jewellery, interiors) and Boekenplein (second hand books & graphic novels) is on de Coninckplein in front of the library from 10am.

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21st July Fete des Belges / Nationale feestdag van België/ Belgischer Nationalfeiertag

Friday July 21st:  It is Belgium’s National Day and a public holiday

Friday July 21st: Re:set fleamarket at Het Eiland from 11am -5.30. Last time I went to Het Eiland it was a little quiet in terms of the stands (I guess some stand holders are on their summer holidays) but even so, it is worth going to Het Eiland to see the location. A relaxed bar with a great view of MAS. This is a pop-up in the Port of Antwerp old harbour building.

and a (free) Roller Disco on Dageraadplaats from 11am -10pm, with food, music, yoga and art installations.

 

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Antwerp Museums

 

Wednesday July 26th -City of Antwerp museums are FREE on the last Wednesday of the month

and Brocantwerpen is on the Grote Markt (10am -6pm)

Friday 28th July -Critical Mass. Assemble 6pm on Theaterplein with your bike for an hour’s cycling round Antwerp and help reclaim the street for bikes.

Saturday July 29th You can join a ghostwalk for 7,50, starting at 7pm from Steen

Sunday 30th July –Lambermontmartre art market from midday

Lastly a random tip …botannicsF

If the activity and heat of summer in the city get a bit much, did you know that Antwerp has a Botanical Garden?  It’s a haven of green and peace. Sit on the lawns or benches, or wander through to the back and find De Serre

 

 

And so …

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Enjoy July in beautiful Antwerp! I hope this post serves as a useful pick ‘n’ mix for the time that there are no weekly posts. Feel free to add comments & ideas in the below. See y’all in August!

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JULY

And please don’t forget that I am still looking for guest posts -if you have some free time over the holiday period, you might like to think about telling YOUR Antwerp story on Nessascityblog. Don’t forget to find me on social media, where additional events and locations are also posted:

 

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Instagram

Facebook (in conjunction with London Calling)

Twitter

Pinterest

This weekend: 23rd, 24th & 25th June

 

NEXT POSTING TOMORROW! JUNE 29TH –THE BIG FAT SUMMER POST 🙂

 

It’s Bier Passie Weekend on the Groenplaats all weekend, starting on Friday at 5. It costs 2 euros in, and 2 euros (jetons) for every beer you try. I went last year and enjoyed the champagne beer … among others. On Saturday it starts at 1pm (closes at midnight) and on Sunday you can begin drinking at 11 (closes 8pm).

HERE IS THE MAP!

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View of The Scheldt from Steenplein

Friday
Flying Pig (outdoor drinks, DJs & music) is on Steenplein from 5pm. I really like this location for it, as it is next to the Schelde and you can sit at the waterside with your drinks and enjoy the sunset if it is a clear evening.

 

Saturday

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Feria Andaluza is a Spanish festival at Waagnatie on the Rijnkaai. Food, drinks, and Andalusian culture to be enjoyed -this is free entry and on both Saturday (from 4pm) and Sunday (from midday). There will be a stage, hosting a variety of performances -this event is something of a must if you are a Flamenco fan.

Sunday

Bier Passie and Feria Andaluza continue ….

Sunday is a good day if you want to snoop about browsing local markets. You could easily do all three of these by bike:

SNITT are holding a secondhand and vintage clothing sale down at Stack from 10am- 6pm. “Stack” is the containers down by the Schelde which has been converted into outlets. Also in this area is Bar Jardim (summer pop up bar).

Meanwhile Ieder Zenne Meug (design market) are not far away at Het Eiland from 11am, while local artists are showing and selling their wares at Lambermontmartre, Leopold de Waelplaats (that’s right in front of the fine art gallery aka KMSKA), from midday. This is always a nice occasion, with space to drink and snack as well as see the art, which is varied and colourful -everything from postcards to panels.

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Pacificatiestraat

Wielerbuurtfeest (Pacificatiestraat) from midday -8pm is a local family-friendly party based around biking. It’s free, but you need to register for the BBQ (15e) which is at 6pm. There’s also kids entertainment, bouncy castle, bike engraving, races….

And thanks to the Nessascityblog reader who spotted this street party on Nieuwstad (Theaterplein) which looks like a good way to round off the weekend, and starts at 3pm.

The weather is going to cool off a little with temperatures going down to 20 or 21 over the weekend. It’s predicted to stay dry though.

Miscellaneous

The ZvA bar on Sloepenweg  opens on Monday (26th) at 2pm!

The Open Air Theatre at Rivierenhof is a great venue to see bands. Check their program here . A few events are free (those marked GRATIS VRIJDAGEN)

Next Wednesday is the last Wednesday of the month, so City of Antwerp Museums are free.

Summer bar Smokey Jo’s Cantina (formerly Bar Josephine, then Smokey Joe’s Garage,) at de Koninck  Brewery is another summer bar (also with kids play area) which is now open.

Get your tickets for BATS Variety Show  (last shows this weekend) I hear they are selling out fast!

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If you are finding it a challenge to get around the various roadworks in Antwerp these days (especially since the Leien were closed off on the 5th June) then check slimnaarantwerpen.be to help you negotiate your way around town.

Don’t forget that the Sinksenfoor (funfair) is open daily in Park Spoor Oost until 9th July.

And the View on The Zoo ferris wheel (featured pic) is on Astridplein until August.

Buurtpleintjes is an initiative from Stad Antwerpen offering free sporting activities on local squares around the city. Last year, my son really enjoyed a series of free basketball lessons on Sint Andriesplaats as part of this initiative. Start by checking here to see what’s on offer near you.

You can now sign up for the 10km Haven Challenge parcours -takes place on the 16th September and comprises of a 10km rum plus 20+ obstacles.

During summer Antwerp offers two open-air swimming pools which are now open! It is free to swim at Boekenberg, but there is a small entrance charge at the Linkeroever pool (it is also recommended that you have a 1 euro coin with you to use the lockers; and your A-kaart, if you have one).

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This is actually me

Please note that during July I will be away. As was the case last year, there will be a Big Fat Summer Post (pressing on the 29th June) for the time that I am not here to write weekly posts.

 

 

 

Don’t forget to find and follow Nessascityblog on social media, where additional events and locations are also posted:

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Instagram

Facebook (in conjunction with London Calling)

Twitter

Pinterest

 

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This weekend: 2nd, 3rd & 4th June

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Battle re-enactment

NEXT POST: 8TH JUNE

I am away this weekend and the thing I am most sorry to miss is De Quaeye Werelt, which is on the Saturday and Sunday from 10 – 6pm. As a family, we go to this every year. It is a re-enactment event and the year is 1477 and Sterckshof (Rivierenhof) is transformed into a Medieval Village for the weekend. It’s great to see the re-enactors in character roles and wearing their medieval costumes. There are also all sorts of stall and stands selling olde worlde food, drink, clothing and accessories. There is even a medieval apothecary. For kids, there is a puppet theatre and usually some beheading, as well as the space of Sterckshof to run around and enjoy. There is also music. One of the main attractions is a battle re-enactment that takes place at 3pm. This is very noisy and action packed. You may wish to bring ear-defenders for youngsters. It is free, and the food and drink are reasonably priced, but it’s also fine to take a picnic of your own. I totally recommend this event!

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Barrio Cantina

Also over the whole weekend is  Barrio Cantina Food Truck Festival on Steenplein, from midday on the 3rd, 4th & 5th.

HERE’S THE MAP!

 

Friday

BATS hold their regular Open Evening from around 8.30pm. This seems like a good opportunity to also plug their 60th Variety Show  at The Little Theatre, which will be a ‘Best of …’

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The BATS Variety Show: June 17th-19th, and 24th-26th

Head to the Harmoniepark for their neighbourhood party: dancing, music, DJs cocktails from 6pm…. to reserve for the BBQ go to www.harmoniewijk.be

Saturday

Dedicated followers of fashion may wish to see the Royal Academy of Fine Arts fashion students’ Graduation Show at the Paardenmarkt Campus.  Tickets are 10 and 5 euros.

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The biggest fleamarket this weekend can be found on Sint Jansplein from 10 am, while on Groenplaats there’s an Indian festival from 1pm. Find out more here.

Thrill seekers! Antwerp’s annual funfair –Sinksenfoor -opens at Spoor Oost. The Grand Opening starts at 2pm. Sinksenfoor will be there until the 9th July.

… For something a bit different – catch a brass band or two at Veemarkt from 2pm …

Sunday

First Sunday of the month means Sunday shopping and it would be a good idea to combine this with Boulevard National which takes place round the Nationalestraat and the Kammenstraat. Shops will be open but there will also be stands, food, tastings and music between midday and 6pm. Alternatively, stop for a pint and a great sandwich at one of my favourite Antwerp bars – An Sibhin.

Go dancing under a bridge at Draakplaats at 3pm, or enjoy bands for free at Borgerhout Bougeert from 4pm.

Register for The Sint Andries run in the area on the same day, or check out Ieder Zenne Meug design market on Bogaard Plein if you are not feeling quite that energetic.

Temperatures are going to be pleasant this weekend, but cooling off to the early 20s after Friday, which will be pretty hot at 26 degrees. Friday afternoon could also see some storms, and there is the possibility of light rain on Saturday at around lunch time. Sunday will be the coolest day, but should be dry all day

Miscellaneous

Please note that during July I will be away. As was the case last year, there will be a Big Fat Summer Post (pressing on the 29th June) for the time that I am not here to write weekly posts.

Monday is a public holiday (Pentecost) and there will be a Goegekregen fleamarket on Theaterplein, from 9am -6pm.

Buurtpleintjes is an initiative from Stad Antwerpen offering free sporting activities on local squares around the city. Last year my son really enjoyed a series of free basketball lessons on Sint Andriesplaats as part of this initiative. Start by checking here to see what’s on offer near you.

During summer Antwerp offers two open-air swimming pools which are now open! It is free to swim at Boekenberg, but there is a small entrance charge at the Linkeroever pool (it is also recommended that you have a 1 euro coin with you to use the lockers; and your A-kaart, if you have one).

Runners -here’s a run with a difference: Silver Run takes you up and down tower blocks, on the 11th June, for which you can register now. It does cost to take part, unless you live in social housing, in which case it is free.

I’m proud to share my first guest blog post on Nessascityblog! If you missed it, have a read of Dolrish’s personal story of coming to live and work in Antwerp, all the way from the Philippines. And if you’d like to contribute and tell your story, please get in touch via nessascityblog@gmail.com

Don’t forget to find and follow Nessascityblog on …

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Instagram

Facebook (in conjunction with London Calling)

Twitter

Pinterest

 

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This weekend: 26th, 27th & 28th May

[Next post: 1st June]

Yasssss …. it’s a long weekend and the weather is going to be toasty. We will respond to this winning combination in the traditional Antwerpian fashion by sloping around in the sunshine, eating and drinking. What luck! For this weekend seems to hold many opportunities to do just that. Just watch out for a wee bit of drizzle or thunder on Sunday, but nonetheless temperatures are set to be high …

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HERE’S THE MAP!

A fun event which is fairly new to the Antwerp Summer scene is Vakantie op T’ Zuid
which describes itself as a holiday market. This event is very much focused on food or drink and it is fairly easy to tailor your consumption to your budget, as the food ranges from small snacks and sweets to larger meals. It has a truly international feel with stands from all over the world, as well as some performances (we saw some Indonesian dancing last year). It takes place down on the Vlaamse Kaai, so there is also a handy playground for kids, as well as a play area for the event itself. Starts Thursday at midday and continues until Sunday.

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Mercado on Groenplaats is also having a food festival that takes place over the whole weekend (25th -28th May) offering -in addition to their usual stands – outdoor stands, street musicians and magicians, and kids’ entertainment.

Friday

Update: No picnic today apologies for the error!

Critical Mass takes place as usual for the last Friday of the month, meeting at 6pm -also on Theaterplein. Bring your bike for the musical edition of this monthly communal bike ride

Aper’eau is back for the summer -their kick-off event takes place on Groenplaats from 5pm. Outdoor drinks and cocktails in the sun in Antwerp’s most famous square. Sounds like a good way to start the weekend…

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Groenplaats

Saturday

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Brick Boat in Stadspark   This plinth (where different exhibits are featured) is a project from Middelheim Museum

Middelheim -Antwerp’s free  sculpture museum is a beautiful place to visit, but even more so when the weather is good. So this weekend should be a good time to take advantage of the opening event of the Richard Deacon exhibition, complete with a free guided tour.

Or enjoy a browse round the ABC (Antiques Books Curiosa) market at Den Beulebak from 11- 5pm. Free.

Sunday

Snitt are holding a second hand market at a fun location today: at Stack (formerly Convoi)  the container village down by Waagnatie. It’s free and you can bring your own secondhand items to donate to local initiative ‘de Collectie’.

Lambermontmartre is another regular presence on the Antwerp summer scene. It’s not only a chance to browse or buy lots of art works by local and amateur artists, and to support their work, but there is always a band and some good, cheap food and drinks. The area has some lovely cafés (Finjan’s is a favourite of mine for great Falafel and middle-Eastern food) and there is usually a table where kids can paint a canvas of their own for a small price.

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Ascension is the reason for the long weekend. If you would like to enjoy some choral music, head to the Begijnhofkerk at 3pm, where for 5 euros you can hear the Cathedral Singers of Oxford with special music for Ascensiontide.

Reserve by calling 03 232 01 03

Miscellaneous

Buurtpleintjes is an initiative from Stad Antwerpen offering free sporting activities on local squares around the city. Last year my son really enjoyed a series of free basketball lessons on Sint Andriesplaats as part of this initiative. Start by checking here to see what’s on offer near you.

Next week Wednesday is the last Wednesday of the month so Antwerp City museums are free (Plantin Moretus, Rockox, Mayer van den Bergh, The MAS and The Red Star Line Museum).

During summer Antwerp offers two open-air swimming pools which are now open! It is free to swim at Boekenberg, but there is a small entrance charge at the Linkeroever pool (it is also recommended that you have a 1 euro coin with you to use the lockers; and your A-kaart, if you have one).

Runners again -here’s a run with a difference: Silver Run takes you up and down towerblocks, on the 11th June, for which you can register now. It does cost to take part, unless you live in social housing, in which case it is free.

chalkboard-620316_640

I’m proud to share my first guest blog post on Nessascityblog! If you missed it, have a read of Dolrish’s personal story of coming to live and work in Antwerp, all the way from the Philippines. And if you’d like to contribute and tell your story, please get in touch via nessascityblog@gmail.com

Don’t forget to find and follow Nessascityblog on …

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Instagram

Facebook (in conjunction with London Calling)

Twitter

Pinterest

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This weekend: 19th, 20th & 21st May

It’s a busy weekend this weekend. You get a gold star if you can do all of this lot. Here’s the GOOGLE MAP to help you find your way…

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There are two events which takes place over the whole weekend. The first is the opening of Bar Noord (formerly The Cargo Summer Bar) in Park Spoor Noord. After nine years, the bar and is having a re-furb and getting a new name. This part of town has changed and developed greatly over recent years and Bar Noord has stated its intention to strengthen its position as a place for the community and for families, in what is becoming a distinct area of the city. This summer Bar Noord promises more sporting activities and live music than it has in the past, and aims to engage more members of this increasingly diverse, multicultural community. I’m curious to see what that is going to look like, as for my family this location has been the go-to destination when the weather is good during school holidays -it’s a great location. Bar Noord opening party kicks off on Friday at 6pm, with further events on both Saturday and Sunday.

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Antwerp Art Weekend is also on over the whole weekend, from Friday at midday. There is more information on the Antwerp Art website (click on ‘venues’) to see which galleries are participating.Although larger museums are involved, Antwerp Art Weekend is a celebration of the many smaller galleries which display contemporary art around the city. For example, this temporary exhibition at Gallery M146, which opens on Friday evening with a reception.
The best way to work it, is to figure out what you want to see and go by bike from gallery to gallery between midday and 6pm. For night owls, there’s Nacht van de Beeldende Kunst or Night of the Visual Arts, at de Studio on the Saturday, costing a tenner and starting at 9pm.

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Untitled 3 by Michael Laird @ Open Systems, M146. Antwerp Art Weekend

At Antwerp Expo there’s a book & hobby fair. It’s free in, and opening at 10am on all three days.

Friday

Fabrik is a relatively new café venue near Theaterplein. They also offer live sessions on Fridays. This week, the wonderful 110 (a trippy, three piece improvisational electro rock band from the city of Antwerp) will be playing, starting at 9pm. Here’s a sample of what they do!

You can still get tickets for the one and only performance of A Sunburnt Country: a unique celebration of Australian music, dance and literature by Maddi Goodwin at de Singel. Hurry, hurry!

Fabrik
Fabrik

 

Saturday

TheMagicFluteforchildren

If you have musical children, head to the Antwerp International School for this special children’s performance of The Magic Flute at 2pm.

Borgerrio is a free, colourful, carnival-style festival that takes place along the Turnhoutsebaan from 2.30, when it begins with a parade. Check the full program for the food, stalls, and other entertainment that will be on offer.

Runners – head to the Rivierenhof for the park runs starting at 2pm. There are 300m (14h) and 800m (14.15h) races for kids, which are free;  and then 5km (14.30h) and 10km (15.30h) races for adults, costing 5 euros. If you have not already registered, you can do so there from 12, before the runs begin.

Sunday

It’s the third Sunday of the month, so as usual, there will be a second hand book and comics market in front of the Permeke Library from 10am; on this occasion accompanied by a piano marathon.

Food, live music, DJs and a flea market taking place for Bouger Bouger #11 on Krugerplein between 10am and 5pm.

Piano

There’s a Re: set Closet sale at Het Eiland from 10am- 5.30pm

And Swan Market is on Grote Markt from 11am.

The weather this weekend is predicted to be warm and dry (around 18-19 degrees), so not as hot as temperatures enjoyed earlier this week. It could be cloudy a times, and there is a chance of rain -particularly on Friday.

asunburntcountry
A Sunburnt Country: Friday at de Singel

Miscellaneous

AkaartF2During summer Antwerp offers two open-air swimming pools which are now open! It is free to swim at Boekenberg, but there is a small entrance charge at the Linkeroever pool (it is also recommended that you have a 1 euro coin with you to use the lockers; and your A-kaart, if you have one).

Runners again -here’s a run with a difference: Silver Run takes you up and down towerblocks, on the 11th June, for which you can register now. It does cost to take part, unless you live in social housing, in which case it is free.

I’m proud to share my first guest blog post on Nessascityblog! If you missed it, have a read of Dolrish’s personal story of coming to live and work in Antwerp, all the way from the Philippines. And if you’d like to contribute and tell your story, please get in touch via nessascityblog@gmail.com

Don’t forget to find and follow Nessascityblog on …

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Instagram

Facebook (in conjunction with London Calling)

Twitter

Pinterest

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This weekend: 12th, 13th & 14th May

Here’s the GOOGLE MAP for this weekend!

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Dries van Noten, Nationalestraat

Belmodo Fashion Days  (overstock sales) continue, finishing up this weekend on Sunday, offering the chance to get designer items from big names like Dries Van Noten, A.F. Vandevorst, Ann Demeulemeester, and Stephan Schneider among others. Belmodo sales also to be found on the first floor of Mercado on Groenplaats from 12- 6pm (not Sunday). There’s a map of participating outlets, or download the app.

Antwerpen Vertelt is a festival of story telling (Dutch) which takes place every two years. De Roma, Permeke Library and The Red Star Line Museum are the key venues for events. You can see the full agenda here

Friday

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Bocadero, Waagnatie

Another summer bar opening! This time it’s the Beach bar-style Bocadero at Waagnatie, down by the Schelde which opens at 5pm for the summer (until September)

Saturday

During the day, from midday, it’s the Damse Feesten, a very child-friendly, free, local street party, comprising of races (bikes, scooters … even a unicyclist took part last year) for people of all ages, kids entertainment and a fleamarket.

The Eurovision Song Contest is of course the highlight of any right thinking person’s musical year, so embiggen your hair and make sure your contouring is on point:  Café Den Draak will be holding a Eurovision Night and showing the contest on the big screen.

Sunday

There’s a big fleamarket on Dageraadplaats from 9am. A good opportunity to go and discover this attractive local square if you don’t already know it. It’s a good place to hang out when the weather is warm and dry, with numerous café terraces, a playground for the kids, and space for them to play basketball or football.

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Sint Anna Tunnel

If you ventured over to Linkeroever for the Left Festival (which was excellent) as mentioned in last week’s post, you might be interested in returning for an evening market on Frederik van Eedenplein from 3pm. Frederik van Eedenplein is immediately on the right when you come out of the Sint Anna Tunnel.

Another summer bar (and restaurant)  Banningville opens at 2pm. I think this is a newcomer to the Antwerp summer bar scene this year, as I have only recently heard of it.

… And don’t forget that it is Mother’s Day in Belgium today. Need a last minute gift? Try Markt van Morgen on Kloosterstraat from midday …

The weather this weekend is looking a bit patchy. Temperatures are decent (18-19 degrees, tops) but there is very likely to be rain on Friday, and possibly on Saturday too. Sunday should be dry, but cloudy at times.

Miscellaneous

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I’m proud to share my first guest blog post on Nessascityblog! If you missed it, have a read of Dolrish’s personal story of coming to live and work in Antwerp, all the way from the Philippines!

If you’d like to contribute and tell your story, please get in touch via nessascityblog@gmail.com

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Guest post: Dolrish Aguillon, vlogger and nurse.

BEING AN EXPAT

What’s it like being an expat? What are struggles you’re likely to face when you leave your country of origin? How would you start a new life when all the things you’ve cherished, treasured and loved are 10, 718 kilometres away?

I am Dolrish Aguillon, a Filipino. And this is my story.

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Graduating, in 2011

It’s September 2011, and I’ve just got my license to practise as a registered nurse when I decide to leave everything behind and go to Belgium. The reason is to have immediate work and earn. My mother was already working here so bringing me from the Philippines wasn’t a big deal. I didn’t have much time to prepare, to say goodbye to my friends and loved ones. I’ll never forget the day when the plane took-off: I was crying like a baby;  it hurts so deeply.

The first week of staying here was exciting and full of promise. I was curious and anxious at the same time. The separation, anxiety and sadness came after a month and it lasted for almost four months. Every night before I went to sleep I would think about how life might have been if I hadn’t left The Philippines. However,  I used all my uncertainties as a fuel to become a better person and to succeed. Here, I’d like to share the things which totally caught me off-guard when I came here:

LANGUAGE

Learning Dutch or any foreign language isn’t that simple. During my first months here, I experienced the frustration of not understanding others, and not being understood. I’ve gone to different evenings schools, followed intensive courses (university and adult courses) just to learn the language. After four years, I got my level 5 certificate from Linguapolis in Antwerp.

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MAKING FRIENDS AND MEETING PEOPLE

What makes it harder is the fact that you don’t know anyone in the city. There is no one with whom you can spend time and enjoy activities. There is no one who would give you a tour of the city, nor advise you on how to live and survive there. Being new to a country, without acquaintances, is hard.

I have made friends through attending Dutch lessons, going to events and activities in Antwerp and by joining groups like Expats in Antwerp on Facebook. My friends are mostly foreigners, like myself.

FOOD

All of us can relate to the experience of suddenly not be able to get the foods we are used to. I didn’t eat much potato before. I am used eating rice and noodles; they have both here but it was seldom cooked at my new home. One dish I really miss is chicken adobo (chicken prepared with soy sauce and bay leaves) – a typical Filipino food, usually served with rice.

WEATHER

Belgium is known to have pretty terrible weather; a lot of rain, cold, wind and snow. You can’t plan anything without consulting the weather first. This is a problem I never had when I was in the Philippines, so it really took me some time to get used to it.

CULTURE

Different country, different culture. What do I expect? I had to accept, mingle and respect the new culture I found myself in. Throughout the years I have seen a lot of Belgian culture and their way of living. I would say that they are very organised and careful in all aspects of their lives. Something that we Filipinos don’t have. We are used to living day by day; not worrying about what tomorrow may bring.

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Dolrish in 2017 – ready to vlog!

Those are the 5 things what made my integration process challenging here Belgium. I wish I knew those things  before I came here and had researched more deeply about Belgium, its people and  its culture. And for these reasons I decided to produce a Youtube channel which gives insights and tips about being an expat – not only in Belgium but also in general. I make 1-2 videos per week, so don’t forget to check out my channel

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Vlog posts on Dolrish’s Youtube channel

Inspired by Dolrish’s post?

If you’d like to contribute and tell your story, please get in touch via nessascityblog@gmail.com

If you are on Facebook, you might also like to check out Expats in Antwerp and connect with people from all over the world who have made Antwerp their home.

This Weekend: 28th, 29th & 30th April & May Day.

Here is THE GOOGLE MAP for this weekend

Friday

It’s the start of Antwerpen Proeft a yearly foodie event, at Waagnatie (Eilandje). Tickets start at 7 euros (or there are other multi and combi tickets) and include a welcome drink.  Under 15s go free and the event is advertised as kid-friendly. Restaurants, food trucks and chefs will be offering signature dishes and cooking demonstration over the weekend (continues until Monday).

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There’s a picnic between midday and 2pm organised by Broederlijke Delen. Bring your picnic to Theaterplein. You will also be able to buy warm and cold drinks there.

Critical Mass also assembles at Theaterplein at 6pm as usual -join them for an hour’s evening biking around the city.

Saturday

 

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Bar Paniek, Kattendijkdok

If you spent a goodly proportion of last summer sloping around Bar Paniek and the Kattendijkdok, you will be pleased to hear that it is re-opening this weekend, with an event hosted by artist collective Time Circus starting Saturday at 11am, which -as anyone who regularly goes to the market knows- is a perfectly respectable time to start drinking.

Over in Koning Albert Park, there is also a start-the-summer vibe happening with Park Festival 2017.  Offering urban and ethnic music, art, and food, Park Festival is a free-entry event starting at 1pm.

 

Round off the day at Bar Venetië where London Calling celebrates its second birthday. It’s a mere 6 euros in if you tag yourself and your friends on the Facebook event page. Starts at 10pm.

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Sunday

Swan Market (Dutch/ Belgian Lifestyle market, offering handmade goods & fashion, as well as jewellery, kids items, food, accessories) returns to Antwerp and will be on Grote Markt from 11-  5pm

And the garage sale at Steegsken 6 continues; Sundays throughout April (11am- 6pm) until May 7th.

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It’s going to get warmer this weekend on Sunday and Monday, with temperatures going up to 17 or 18 degrees, although there could be some showers on Monday. Saturday should be dry, but not quite so warm (around 14 degrees, max).

Miscellaneous

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Monday is Labour Day (International Workers’ Day) -a public holiday. Shops will be closed, so head to Park Spoor Noord (shelter)  for a large covered second-hand market hosted by SNITT and Goegekregen.  There is one on the Veemarkt too, also starting at 9am.

Labour Day will also be celebrated on Grote Markt from 1pm with performances and entertainment for kids. The parade will go through the old town beforehand, having gathered at Leopold De Waelplaats from 10am, departing at 11.

Brocantwerpen has started: on the last Wednesday of the month, until the end of September, from 10 -6pm. Bric-a-brac, accessories, clothes and furnithings for sale on the Grote Markt.

And thanks to the reader who provided the info in the comments, re: MUHKA re-opening this weekend (MUHKA is the modern art gallery on the kaaien).

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This weekend: 21st, 22nd & 23rd April

NEXT POST: THURSDAY 27TH APRIL, FOR THE MAY DAY WEEKEND (LABOUR DAY) IN ANTWERP

Here’s the GOOGLE MAP FOR THIS WEEKEND

Friday

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Jacqueline van Castre #2 by Sacha Eckes

Last chance to catch the Life Will Be Great Soon exhibition at Praetoria Gallery: the finissage is this evening from 6-9pm

Saturday

It’s Record Store Day! In Antwerp Coffee & Vinyl, Fatkat Records, Wally’s Groove World, and Tune Up Records will be taking part. See their individual pages for details about events and live performances in-store. Record stores are marked with the Record Store Day logo on the Google Map.

More for music fans at Rock Berchem Festival (free).

At Antwerp Airport in Deurne it’s Luchtvaartdag (Aviation Day).

Sunday

It’s the Antwerp 10 Miles & Marathon Here’s the program; the first run begins at 9am.

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The Red Star Line Museum

It’s Heritage Day across Flanders. You can do a search of the many activities. The theme of this year’s Heritage Day is Care. So for, example, the Red Star Line Museum offer a guided tour which focuses on the role of the medical checks to which emigrants were subjected before departing Antwerp in Have You Been To The Doctor Yet? All city run museums are free on Heritage Day, and the Plantin Moretus museum will be holding a mini-food truck festival, with drinks and dishes prepared using herbs from their herb garden.

There’s a Vegan Pot Luck from 1pm at Cargo Summer Bar in Park Spoor Noord. Bring your vegan picnic with dishes to share in order to join in.

From 11 until 1pm kids aged 6-12 can enjoy some creative play at the library making pictures with a food theme.

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There’s an Easter Egg Hunt for kids over in the Militair Domein (Groen Kwartier) from 11am it is free but you have to register on a form in the Groen Kwartier Delhaize or in the bakery there.

And the garage sale at Steegsken 6 continues; Sundays throughout April (11am- 6pm) until May 7th.

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Miscellaneous

The weather should be mild with a slight chance of showers on Saturday morning, but Sunday is predicted to be dry. Temperatures of around 11 degrees, at best.

This English-speaking comedy night on Wednesdays is on my to-do list. Have you been?

Also, don’t forget that the last Wednedsay of the month means free entry to city museums (Plantin Moretus,  Museum Mayer van den Bergh,  Rockox, MAS and The Red Star Line Museum).

Don’t forget to find and follow Nessascityblog on …

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Instagram

Facebook (in conjunction with London Calling)

Twitter

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