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).
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.
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.
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.
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).
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).
Don’t forget to find and follow Nessascityblog on …
If you catch up with this blog on the day of pressing, you might like to know that there is a ‘Kijkavond’ on the roof of MAS this evening. This is organised by urania.be will go ahead if visibility is good, in which case it should be possible to see Mars and Jupiter. Free.
Recently refurbed and re-opened Fish & Chips store on Kammenstraat opens a free art expo at 6.30pm.
If you are shopping during the day with kids, there are some activities for them at Grand Bazar Shopping Centre between 11 and 5pm ( e.g. Easter basket and egg decorating)
Swaajp impro theater offer a double bill with Meeza Impro group for a mere fiver at Zaal Zirkus at 8pm
Sunday -Easter Day Easter Day is all about brunching. You might remember that back in March I wrote about the work of Maddilyn Goodwin and the Sunburnt Country Project which takes place on 19th May at Singel. WILD restaurant in the old town is hosting a fun fundraising event in the form of a brunch, at 11am- 3pm, to help establish the costs of building the concept. Guests can experience the culinary side of Australia while helping these passionate artists come together to expand the cultural offers of Antwerp. There will be Australian-inspired food, sweets, drinks, live music and a bit of trivia! Prices range from 6 euros to about 15, depending on what you have to eat/drink. You can come for a full lunch or just swing by for a drink.
If you are in the old town, swing by Steegsken 6 for a small garage sale which is well worth a visit -throughout April, on Sundays from 11 -6pm.
It’s a holiday and shops are closed, but there are two markets which will be worth checking out: Goegekregen will be on Theaterplein all day, with the usual fair of vintage, retro and second-hand clothes, toys, books and household items. Meanwhile in Borgerhout on the Krugerplein, there is the Easter edition of Krugermarkt (selling second hand goods and their own handmade creations) offering activities for kids (races and an egg hunt). There is also a brunch which you can join in for 15 euros pp by registering via mail at firstname.lastname@example.org Krugerplein is a pretty square with space for kids to play, or to have a picnic.
Last chance to take kids to the pop-up indoor play above Mercado, on Groenplaats ….
The weather is set to be cool and mild but not as warm as some of the sunny days we have enjoyed recently. Saturday will be the warmest day, but with chances of showers too.
Wednesday 19th April is Buitenspeeldag (Play Outside Day). There will be play activities and equipment for kids at Permeke Library and on Sint Andriesplaats between 1pm and 5pm. Free.
This will be Nessascityblog’s last post for 2016 , so I am trying to include as much as possible to see you into 2017 in Antwerp.
NEXT POST: THURSDAY 5TH JANUARY 2017
As mentioned last week Stad Antwerp’s Winter Festivities have now started so head down to the old town and you can’t miss it. The Christmas market can be found around Steenplein, Suikerrui, Groenplaats and Grotemarkt, with gluhwein and hot chocolate aplenty. There’s skating on Groenplaats, a tubing slide on Steenplein and the ferris wheel by the Schelde. The atmosphere is friendly and festive, and it’s a great place to take visiting friends or family and kids. The Nello & Patrasche (A Dog of Flanders) statue was unveiled last weekend in front of the Cathedral. This beautiful piece is the work Batist Vermeulen of Studio Tist.
On social media, you can share your Antwerp festive pictures with the hashtag #WinterinA
Festive & Miscellaneous
If you are planning a clear- out of your home you might want to revisit this post for ideas about where to take still useable toys, books, household goods and wearable clothes, instead of throwing them out.You could also contact the EVA centre in Ekeren who often take items to assist the refugees that they welcome and care for. At the moment, there is also a drop- off for clothes, shoes and fabric in Het Steen Café -make sure all your items are bagged before bringing them there.
MAF is opening a new art space on Keistraat 1 on the 21st December. Head along at 8pm to find out about their approach and what they do.
A random recommendation from me for this time of year is to go to Antwerp Market on Theaterplein. It’s open on both on Saturdays and Sundays, but Saturday is better, in my opinion. If you are going to be cooking a lot over the Christmas period, then this is the place to get great food from all over the world at a really good price. I always get veg here, and if I can, cheeses too. Over the time that I have lived in Antwerp, the market has also become increasingly social, with cava stands, oyster bars and food trucks, adding to the more traditional food sellers here. You can also get fresh coffee and pasta on the market, and a huge range of the sort of food you would want to offer at a party or to Christmas guests, including many varieties of olives, dips and tapenades. The market on Sunday is less food orientated, with more clothes and household items -it also closes earlier. Since the Theaterplein gained a roof, rain no longer stops play.
China Light is an event that is slightly pricier (15 euros for an adult ticket) than the usual events and activities I post here, but it is a really nice tour if you want to do something a bit unusual this winter. The lights do look magical and the zoo is a great setting in which to display them. I would check the weather forecast before going as rain would spoil this tour.
The last Wednesday of the month means free museum entry for Stad Antwerp museums (Wednesday 28th December).
Next weekend is of course Christmas, and I am away for New Year, so I will be posting again on the 5th January. For New Year’s Eve in Antwerp head to The Schelde if you want fireworks. But if clubs and parties are more your thing, then I recommend that you keep an eye on This Is Antwerp who I am sure will be posting all the information you need as NYE approaches.
Thank you very much for reading and following Nessascityblog during 2016. Please comment and include links to any additional winter events which I have missed. If you have found this blog helpful, please share it with your friends, on social media and in groups where it may be useful.
*** Here’s the GOOGLE MAP with all the locations from this post for the specific Friday- Sunday events***
Street Art Antwerp has featured a few times on this blog, and earlier this year my son and I joined a tour which we both very much enjoyed. This Friday, Tim is finishing up for the year with a special Flame Edition of his tour: bring torches and flashlights, and wear luminous clothing. It starts at 8 at the entrance to Zomerfabriek, Minkelersstraat in Berchem and will conclude at a tba venue, with music and snacks. Check the Facebook event page to register and to be informed of final details. Tim does not charge for these excellent tours, but you can make a donation which will go to Music For Life
Special holiday wishes to everyone at the Antwerp International School which finishes today for the winter break – safe travels and have a wonderful festive season!
At 1pm at bar Bato Batu there’s a record fair -for last minute gifts for the vinyl freak in your life (or for yourself, or course!)
If you are at the Christmas market during the day and are an incomer from abroad to the city of Antwerp, and would like to meet other parents and their kids, then head to Café Den Engel on Groote Markt at 2.30 for this Expat Parents & Kids Party.
Fancy a short trip out of town? Cosplay on ice: Cosplayers of Antwerp will assemble at Antwerp central station at midday and take the bus to Antartica Ice Rink in Wilrijk, returning for 5.30pm. You need the cost of the bus fare + skate hire (don’t forget ID too) which in total comes to E7,25
Improtheatre on Saturday Night: Swaajp describe this as a theatre show full of new stories, surprising adventures with intriguing plot twists, sometimes emotional, frequently hilarious, always made up on the spot. Swaajp Improtheater presents the second episode of their new regular improv theatre show ‘Swaajp Invites’.
Our guest for this show is Flavien Reppert (France). As the director of the Strasbourg-based Cie du Théâtre de l’Oignon, this moustache-bearing Frenchman will astonish you with his many talents, one of which is a delightfully scraping Rrr in his English pronunciation.
When: Sat. 17 December 2016, 20:00
Where: BATS Little Theatre, Paardenmarkt 111, Antwerp
Tickets: €9 via: www.swaajp.be
If you are crafty and like making things, head to Little Brewers Winter Garden at 2pm to make Christmas decorations. There’s also kids’ entertainment and a kids’ play area. These activities take place between 2 -5pm and are free with no pre-registration necessary LBWG is the De Koninck Brewery winter bar which is open until February 19th (you might know the venue from its summer incarnation -Smokey Jo’s).
At 8pm Het Roze Huis will be showing the film The Imitation Game. Het Roze Huis has monthly film screenings for the LGBT community in and around Antwerp, and these are free. I saw The Imitation Game when it came out in cinemas in 2014, and it is well worth seeing.
There’s a Goedgekregen fleamarket down at Eilandje between 9 and 6pm. It’s indoors at ’t Kot (port employment centre), Kempischdok-Westkaai, and is free.
Design Market ‘Ieder Zenne Meug‘ holds a Christmas edition at Zuiderpershuis between 11 and 6pm, and because it is the third Sunday of the month, it’s the book market at de Coninckplein (Permeke library) from 10 until 4pm.
There’s read-aloud for kids aged 4-8 at Permeke library at 11am (free, no registration registration, in Dutch). This weekend the story will have a festive theme.
Shops in the city centre will be open today for Christmas shopping.
The weather is set to be mild and dry again this weekend, with some cloud and fog at times.
May your festive season be all sparkly and completely stress-free!
I don’t do Elf-on-the-Shelf, and I couldn’t care less about the arrival of a certain soft-drink laden truck: for me it starts to feel like Christmas when Antwerp’s Christmas Market opens and Winter In A begins, which is does -this very weekend (on Saturday). Huzzah! (Also, if there are Belgian and/ or Dutch influences in your family, you don’t start to ‘do’ Christmas until The Good Sint has embarked on his return journey back to Spain).
If you can’t wait until Saturday, Flying Pig will be holding a winter edition of an event you might have become familiar with during summer (outdoor drinks, snacks and music). This will take place at Napoleonkaai, starting at 5pm -that’s right by MAS.
Also on Friday, Aspen Bocadero Winter Bar (Waagnatie) opens its doors at 6pm. It has a variety of events taking place over the winter season, until mid January.
So the Antwerp City winter festivities will kick off at 5pm. If you are not familiar with the Stad Antwerp winter offering -head down to the old town and you can’t miss it. The Christmas market can be found around Steenplein, Suikerrui and Grotemarkt, with gluhwein and hot chocolate aplenty. There’s skating on Groenplaats, a tubing slide on Steenplein and the ferris wheel by the Schelde. The atmosphere is friendly and festive, and it’s a great place to take visiting friends or family, and kids. The Nello & Patrache (A Dog of Flanders) statue will be unveiled at the Cathedral at 7pm, when there will also be a video projection on the Cathedral. Winter In Antwerp continues until the 8th January 2017.
(image from Daniel Ruiz-Cecconello)
Not far away, Markt van Morgen will also be having a double Christmas edition (on both days) of their usual fare of jewellery, design, accessories, stationery and clothing -made by local creatives and small businesses, providing the opportunity to buy Christmas gifts that you won’t find in high street stores. Find MvM on Lombardenvest on Saturday, from 10-6pm
Fans and photographers interested in nature and wildlife photography will enjoy The Lowland Photo Festival at Kinepolis Event Centre. This opens on Saturday, and is also on on Sunday. There is a program of talks which is paying, but it is free to see the photography which forms the wider exhibition, with a 2 euro entance cost for the Lowland exhibition. Download the info flyer HERE.
For a Victorian Christmas experience why not join the Victorian Christmas Walk, Antwerp? Assemble in your Victorian or Edwardian outfit at 1pm on Astridplein for a walk down to the Old Town and the Christmas Market.
Shops in the city centre will be opening today and next Sunday too, for Christmas shopping.
The weather is forecast to be dry, and not too horribly cold either -possibly going up to 9 degrees on Sunday.
Shopping centre Grand Bazar (Groenplaats) has various offers and activities on both Saturdays and Sundays remaining before Christmas between 1 and 5pm.
(image courtesy of Grand Bazar)
If you are looking ahead to the winter season and have kids to entertain, I recommend that you book Antwerp’s only traditional, old -school panto in English, for January in the Arendberg Theatre, by BATS theatre group. Another recommended from me -this time it’s Jack and the Beanstalk.(image courstesy of BARS Antwerp)
***Here’s the GOOGLE MAP featuring all the locations for this weekend***
If you are still mourning the loss of the summer bars, you will want to keep an eye out for the Winter bars. Little Brewers Winter Garden (Smokey Jo’s in its summer incarnation) reopens at 6pm on Thursday and will be in operation until February 2017, open on Wednesdays -Sundays. Bar Gloed (winter edition) at the Antwerp Tower on Keyserlei is also open on Wednesdays -Sundays. There’s still a bit of a wait until the city’s ‘Winter In A’ program starts though: that will kick off on December 10th, in the old town .
Regular readers will know how much I and my son enjoyed the Street Art tour of Antwerp. This is a must for street art and graffiti fans, or anyone who simply would like to see the city through a different lens. A lack of Dutch is no barrier: Tim is now provided tours in English, including one this Saturday starting at the Mechelseplein at 11am. Recommended!
Perhaps along a similar vein is the evening event Exposed Music: a guided tour through Antwerp city, with musical experiences and performances in unexpected locations on the way. The tour concludes at midnight in Het Bos with a finale.
Lovely Hand Gemaakt is at Plein Publiek from 11 -5pm. If you need to start your Christmas shopping and can’t face busy shopping streets, this will be a lot more relaxed, and there is the added advantage of supporting the work of local creatives. I picked up quite a few gifts (such as soaps, jewellery) from Hand Gemaakt last year, and they were very well received.
At FOMU and Cinema Zuid (which is in FOMU) there is a program of activities and workshops (yoga; light & photography workshop; family tree workshop; guided tours for kids) for children today, with activities for smalls aged 3+, some are more expensive than others, with the kids’ movies at only 3 euros. For most events, reserve via the links, except for the Smartbox activity, which is only 2 euros and is ongoing throughout the day.
Elsewhere, at various locations, it’s Children’ Art Day in and around Antwerp. Search the site for an activity or workshop for your child(ren) suited to their age(s) and location – these are free.
For Sinterklaas and other children’s gifts, go to The Roma theatre for a second hand market devoted entirely to kids’ toys, books and clothes (1 euro in for adults; 50 cents for kids).
Bargains also to be had in front of the Permeke Library at the monthly boekenplein -graphic novels, second hand books and collectors’ books for sale, from 10am -4pm.
The weather looks not too bad, with a good chance of a dry -and even partly sunny – Saturday, but Sunday likely to be a bit windy, and with some rain.
If you are looking ahead to the winter season and have kids to entertain, I recommend that you book Antwerp’s only traditional, old -school panto in English, for January in the Arendberg Theatre, by BATS theatre group. Another recommended from me -this time it’s Jack and the Beanstalk.
I was asked by a reader to include more random suggestions and recommendations, so here is one which I think is just right for this time of year: Filmhuis Klappei, a little gem of a cinema not far from de Coninckplein. Half the price of mainstream cinemas, and always with an interesting and eclectic program, I haven’t been for a while but am planning to go again soon. Last time I went I saw a Hitchcock film (Marnie) complete with an interesting intro from a movie buff. And the venue was just right for a movie of this type. The bar is also very attractive with old cinema posters and images, so go for a drink beforehand. It’s perfect for an old-fashioned movie date …
Things are a little quieter at the moment -a bit of down time until the Christmas and winter events get going at the start of December, but I found a few low- budget/ free options for this long weekend…
Firstly, here’s the GOOGLE MAP with all the locations from this post.
It’s a public holiday for Armistice Day. Schools are off. There will be a big second hand market courtesy of Goegekregen and Snitt on Theaterplein from 9am -6pm.
Het Roze Huis -HQ for activities, events, lobbying and information for Antwerp’s LGBTQ+ community launches L-week today, kicking off a programme of events, workshops, film and socialising for lesbians in Antwerp.
Today is a big day for all Antwerp children who have been well- behaved of late: Sinterklaas is arriving on Antwerp and will be in the area until 6th December. He will arrive on his boat from Spain and make his way to Grote Markt to address crowds from the Stadhuis. It’s a traditional, local occasion; kids are in awe to see the Sint and there is always an upbeat kiddie-friendly atmosphere, but be prepared for a fair amount of waiting around, and quite dense crowds. Take waterproofs and umbrellas. Sint is expected at Steenplein at 13.30 and will make his way to the Town Hall for 2.45. For couch potatoes -it will be on TV (Ketnet).
An alternative, indoor event takes place at Waagnatie: Brickmania which is a MUST for Lego enthusiasts -don’t worry if your kids want to do both though, because Brickmania is takes place over SaturdayandSunday.
It’s five euros in, but free for under 6s. We went last year and the kids really loved it. Some of the creations are really remarkable: complex and detailed. Kids get a goodie bag, and if you are already thinking of Christmas shopping for the Lego fans in your family, you can get that done here too.
Over the whole weekend Bollekesfeestwill be taking place(4-day beer festival, plus local food products) started on Thursday evening at Steenplein, Groenplaats, Suikerui and Grote Markt. This is fast becoming a very important and enjoyable annual fixture on the Antwerp calendar, even though the event only began in 2007 (so 2016 is the 10th edition!). Great fun, also for kids, with activities and entertainment for younger ones on the Steenplein part of the festival. Buy the Gazet van Antwerpen on Thursday, Friday & Saturday and you will find a voucher for a free beer. (pic courtesy of Stephanie Hughes. Grote Markt image by Daniel Ruiz-Ceccenello).
The Redball Project is a public art event that has travelled through 25 cities around the world and comes to Antwerp Central Station today. I can’t tell you much more about it at the moment; you need to sign up via email to receive info/ notification.
*UPDATE: #redballproject will be at the market/ Het Paleis on Saturday and at MAS on Sunday.
On Friday evening at 5pm the Repair Café returns to ‘T Werkhuys in Borgerhout. Bring your broken items (e.g. clothes, furniture, tech) and maybe they can be fixed for free, or if you like fixing things, you might be able to help someone else. There’s also going to be a share market -bring things to give away that you no longer want. If you take part you will be able to pick three items from others who are doing the same.
Here’s one that’s a bit different if you want an unusual alternative to Bollekesfeest …bat watching at Rivierenhof. Free, but reserve beforehand by email email@example.com or call 03 360 52 18. Starts at 7.30.
If you haven’t checked out any of the movies showing as part of Cinema Urbana (Zomer van Antwerpen) Saturday might be a good time to do so: there’s a showing of The Martian at Plantinkaai by the river. It’s free and starts at 10pm.
If you are enjoying Bollekesfeest (see above) but by Sunday are feeling the need to finish festivities at a more relaxed location, then the Wild Jo’s Market might be the perfect destination. It’s on Vrijdagmarkt which is a really pleasant, smaller square which can be found off Reyndersstraat or Hoogstraat, so it is just a walk away from the rest of the beer festival.
It’s the third Sunday of the month so it’s the Strip & Boekenplein (graphic novels/ book market) on De Coninckplein
At Park Spoor Noord it’s World Picknick Day. Bring your own picnic basket -there will also be snacks for sale, and some sports sessions provided by Sport Club Het Eiland.
(image courtesy of Sport Club Het Eiland)
From 4pm -7pm at Rivierenhof, it’s Yoyogi again -an open performance opportunity for anyone who would like to come along and demonstrate their music, dance or performance skills, or to watch others. It’s free and there are also various workshops (e.g. kungfu, acro-yoga, ropeskipping, tai chi).
Design Market Ieder Zenne Meug is taking place on the Kattendijkdok today from 11am -6pm and you could then stay put at the same location to round off your weekend with some classical music: this free concert by trio Colour Collective will also take place at Born In Antwerp (Kattendijkdok), starting at 7pm. It’s recommended that you bring along a picnic blanket, camping chair or cushion to sit on. (image courtesy of Colour Collective)
… And the Redball will be at the Diamantpaviljoen, at MAS…
The weather should be pretty good for Friday with warm temperatures, although there might be showers in the evening. Alas, it’s likely to be cloudier, and less predictable in general over the weekend, with the possibility of showers both days. Temperatures remain good for Saturday, but fall a bit on Sunday.
To help you find the places mentioned in this blog, check the Google map for this post.
A heads-up on Story Time in English which will start September 14 and will take place every Wednesday from 1:00- 2:30pm, for children aged aged 4-11. Each week will have a different theme/story, and there will also be activities, music and snacks based around that theme. The cost is 5 euro and the max number of kids is 25. Contact Kay via the Facebook page to register your child in advance. Location: Centraal Cafe, Sint-Pietersvliet 11, Antwerp 2000 (Image courtesy of Central Collective)
Kids will also enjoy being taken to the summer edition of Sportopia in Park Loods (Park Spoor Noord). The winter version of this was good -my kids enjoyed it on more than one occasion, although it can get busy. It costs 6 euros per session, but is less than that if you have an A-Kaart and free to under 4s, or those with 10 points on their A-Kaart. Open 10- 6pm Wednesdays- Sundays. Finishing up soon (28th August).
Next Wednesday, being the last Wednesday of the month, District Antwerp museums are free.
This weekend in Antwerp will be dominated by Antwerp Pride! You can’t have missed the rainbow flags fluttering high above the main streets in the centre of Antwerp. This is the 9th time that Antwerp has held a Pride event.
The main Pride parade takes place today, starting at 2pm. At the same time, the free afterparty (WAVE) starts on Steenplein, and continues until 11.30pm. The parade route is as follows:
Start : Waterpoort, 2000 Antwerpen Extended Route : Verschansingsstraat, Leopold de Waelplaats, Karel Rogierstraat, Marnixplaats, Scheldestraat, Scheldekaaien. End point : Sint Pietersvliet, 2000 Antwerpen
The first parade float is expected to arrive at Steenplein at 4. In the past, I have watched the parade from near St Jansvliet and always been able to get a good view, and enjoy the great atmosphere that Pride brings to the city.
Markt van Morgen is on Kloosterstraat from midday until 6pm – perfect for a last-minute Mother’s Day gift (see miscellaneous).
From 4pm -7pm at Rivierenhof, it’s Yoyogi again -an open performance opportunity for anyone who would like to come along and demonstrate their music, dance or performance skills, or to watch others. It’s free and there are also various workshops (e.g. kungfu, acro-yoga, ropeskipping, tai chi).
SNITT is a vintage and second hand clothing market where you can swap or sell your items.
Highest chance of showers is on Friday, but it’s looking likely to be warm over the whole weekend, and dry on Saturday and Sunday.
Here’s the map of all the places mentioned in this post, so you can find your way.
On Monday 15th, Antwerp celebrates its own Mother’s Day. There’s a Rubens Market in the old town (around the Cathedral area) for the day.
Bollekesfeest(4-day beer festival, plus local food products) starts on Thursday evening at Steenplein and Grote Markt. This is fast become a very important and enjoyable annual fixture on the Antwerp calendar, even though the event only began in 2007. Great fun, also for kids, with activities and entertainment for younger ones on the Steenplein part of the festival.
Also over the whole weekend is the Linkerwoofer festival. It’s 10 euros per person (kids less than a metre tall go free). Alongside the music, there is plenty of kids’ entertainment, as well as a market) and begins on Friday night at 6pm. Take the Sint Anna tunnel under the river and you are there. Great views of the Antwerp skyline from the other side of the water! (pic from Linkerwoofer)
Flying Pig (music, food trucks, drinks) is on Sint Andriesplaats this Friday evening from 5pm.
There’s a choice of free (world) music on Dageraadplaats and kids’ entertainment at 7.30 as part of Muziek in de Wijk or at Rivierenhof Openlucht Theater at 8.30. Folk music fans should head to Bar Ami for their usual Friday night fayre at 8.30.
And for those swept up in the Pokemon Go craze … head to Antwerp Zoo at 7pm for a Zoo Pokehunt until 8.30. It’s free, but participants are encouraged to donate 3 euros (image from Pixabay).
The Antwerp Queer Arts Festival opens today and continues until the 14th August. The free opening event takes place at Gallerie Verbeeck-VanDyck (near MAS/ Eilandje) and coincides with Museum Night (see below)
Loads of Antwerp museums will be open until 1am for Museum Night on Saturday night. 10 euros will get you into them all – a mere 8 euros if you reserve beforehand. It’s only 5 euros if you are under 26, and free if you are under 12.
During the day, from 10am there’s a second hand market on St Jansplein.
Today’s second hand/ fleamarket is in Park Spoor Noord, from 9am -6pm, courtesy of Goegekregen.
From 4pm -7pm at Rivierenhof, it’s Yoyogi -an open performance opportunity for anyone who would like to come along and demonstrate their music, dance or performance skills, or to watch others. It’s free and there are also various workshops (e.g. kungfu, acro-yoga, ropeskipping, tai chi).
Antwerpen Zingt! is a fun event at 6.30 at the Gedempte Zuiderdokken/ Vlaamse Kaai. It’s basically a great big sing-a-long. It’s free and you will be provided with a song sheet -there is usually a mix of well-known popular songs and some Flemish ones. The singing is lead from a large stage, and there are some additional performances.
After a disappointingly drizzly week, this weekend looks set to be largely dry (some possibility of showers on Saturday) and cloudy, with warmest temperatures (24- 26 degrees) on Sunday, which could also be sunny…. Fingers crossed!
Bibfabriek at Permeke Library is keeping kids entertained for free on every Wednesday afternoon throughout August (from 2- 4pm).
Cargo Summer Bar is also providing kids entertainment on Wednesdays at 2 (games, face-painting, workshops, dance.) Keep an eye on their Facebook page in case activities are cancelled or rescheduled due to weather.
Speel-O-Rama is on daily (Mon- Fri) at Zuiderpershuis for kids aged7-13, from 10am- 4.30pm for 2 euros per child. For the week 08/08 -12/08 the theme is Street Theater. There are other ongoing activities and workshops too.
Kids will enjoy being taken to the summer edition of Sportopia in Park Loods (Park Spoor Noord) which returns on July 20th. The winter version of this was good -my kids enjoyed it on more than one occasion, although it can get busy. It costs 6 euros per session, but is less than that if you have an A-Kaart and free to under 4s, or those with 10 points on their A-Kaart. Open 10- 6pm Wednesdays- Sundays.
Get Involved In An Interesting Art Project…
If you would like to try something creative this summer, and think that starting small would be the best way to begin, this project, which is the brainchild of Antwerp-based artist Leo Reijnders is perfect for you:
To mark its 10th birthday, CLOUDKNITTERS is organising a MAIL ART PROJECT “Let Sky The Limit” and is inviting every artist we know to participate and make a Mail Art Work, the size of a postcard. We also should like each artist to invite all his/ her artist friends and colleagues to do the same:
Our aim is to make an ‘artistic footprint’ of the Cloudknitters network.
These small pieces of art will be exhibited during the CLOUDKNITTERS 10- YEAR festival that lasts from 30th September until 23rd October in the Old Bourse, Hofstraat 15, 2000 Antwerp (Belgium)
This Old Bourse is the oldest stockmarket of Antwerp for international trading. The Pagadder Tower (1533) was a watch-tower whose purpose was to spot ships so they could be compelled to pay excise duties. This happened during the Spanish occupation, and the tower was manned by officers who were considered too small to fight. Pagador means paymaster in Spanish, but here in Antwerp they still use the word ‘pagadder’ (affectionately) for a small girl or boy.
(New Google Maps feature: this is in the Miscellaneous section at the bottom of this post)
The first Friday of the month is always Open Evening at the Little Theatre at BATS. Go along and meet the crew if you are interested in being involved in English speaking theatre in Antwerp. It’s also a good chance to pick up tickets for their famous Variety Show, which has a 1950s theme this year.
From 6pm it’s Streat XXL at Felixpakhuis on Eilandje -free entry.
Also over the whole weekend, opening today is a stock sale of books at Zuiderpershuis -open from 10am -6pm each day (and next weekend too). It’s a good place to pick up bargains and gifts, with a wide selection of books for kids. Most books are in Dutch.
Today and Sunday it’s the moment to time-travel back to 1477 and De Quaeye Werelt which is a thoroughly enjoyable event for people of all ages, and takes place at Sterkshof, part of the Rivierenhof domein. It’s on from 10am – 6pm both days. Many re-enactors travel from all over Europe to pitch their heavy canvas tents and set up home, or a stall for
the weekend. There are demonstrations, re-enactments, music, market stands and a big noisy battle to watch (14.30pm). There is a lot for kids to enjoy, and the beer and snacks are always excellent.
MARTA, the famers’ market takes place on Kattendijkdok today, near the summer bar Bar Paniek and Born In Antwerp HQ, from 9am.
Head along to Sint Andriesplaats for Brasspartij at 2pm: six cafés in the area are going to be hosting this event and there will be brass bands from Belgium and The Netherlands, as well as food and beer trucks on the square.
There’s another big fleamarket on Sint-Jansplein from 8am -6pm.
For runners, it is the Deurne 10 miles (with shorter parcours for those who don’t want to run the full 10). It costs 10 euros to register and starts at the Bosuilstadion.
If you have any energy left after that, head to Club Het Geluk for the night which starts at 10 and is free until it’s full.
And a special shout-out to the best basisschool in Belgium: De Bunt who are having their school fête today!
Have lots of fun!
Ongoing events (see Friday and Saturday) Book market at Zuiderpershuis, Strangelove & De Quaeye Werelt.
It will be your last chance to Tango Under The Bridge at Draakplaats at 3pm, with an extra long final edition of this event that includes live music starting at 8pm.
It’s the first Sunday of the month, so the shops in the city centre will be open for Sunday shopping.
More for runners: describing itself as ‘not the longest, but certainly the nicest’ the Sint Andries Run takes place today, with additional entertainment all day on the Sint Andriesplaats -be there at 11am to register at the tent. The first run begins at 1, and it is free to take part.
If you are on Instagram and attend an event in the area (or snap a beautiful Antwerp location) -especially if you read about it on this blog -please hashtag it #nessascityblog to contribute to a stream! I’d love to see your images, as it is impossible for me to make it to everything that I feature on the weekend posts. I usually try to get to 2-3 of them though.
Saturday sees the arrival of a new market in Antwerp: an Evening Market on the Vlaamsekaai (near the playground), starting at 3pm and continuing until 9pm, promising 100+ stands offering food, jewelry, leather goods & snacks.
At 4pm, footie fans might want to catch the Belgium -Switzerland friendly. This will be showing on the big screens at An Sibhin and Plein Publiek. It will also be showing at Kelly’s on Keyserlei and at The Irish Times, who will additionally be screening Real Madrid v Athletico Madrid later on (as will An Sibhin, offering pitchers of Stella or Jupiler for just 8€ during the game). When UEFA 2016 starts in June, Cargo Summer Bar will be showing all games on the big screen there. Take your pick.
In the Stadspark, Klein Antwerpen will be holding walks, storytelling and a chance to try some Taiko (Japanese drumming) from midday -bring your picnic! I couldn’t see exactly where in the park they will be starting, but they usually meet at the large statue on the corner at Belgielei/ Van Eycklei.
Den Hopsack is a small, friendly and diverse music bar in the old town -just a little off the beaten track (off Sint Jansvliet). On Sunday they are having a jam of traditional Irish music starting at 3pm. This is a monthly session, and is free.
Lambermontmartre opens this weekend! This is a really nice monthly art market which takes place on the last Sunday of each month throughout summer, enabling local artists to sell their work, but also offering great snacks, a small bar and music. As well as checking out the art work on sale, you can take part by creating some art of your own, courtesy of SKETCH, and there is a space for children to paint too. You can find Lambermontmarte in the square directly in front of the Fine Art Museum from midday. Music from gypsy swing band Croque Manouche.
It’s also the last chance to catch this exhibition on the Mechelsesteenweg.
Temperatures are going to be good this weekend (21 +) but with a chance of showers (some stormy) throughout the weekend. Enjoy the warm weather, but bring a brolly, just in case! (image: Pixabay)
I’m trying out a Google map facility this weekend: Click here to see all the locations mentioned in this post (plus central station to help you orientate yourself!) If you want directions from a specific starting point, click on the red pin of the location you want to find. Let me know what you think of this function and whether it is working properly for you.
Photos from last weekend (Swan Market and Antwerp Art Weekend) can be found on the Nessascityblog Instagram page. Look out for pictures of this weekend’s events, as they are posted.
Thursday is Ascension Day (‘Hemelvaartsdag’ in Dutch) with Belgian schools also taking Friday off to make a long weekend. There is going to be a big fleamarket on Theaterplein, one from Skrap on the Gedempte Zuiderdokken (10am -10pm) and a fabric market on Groenplaats.
Also worth knowing is that another summer bar –Bar Gloed -has just opened. The kitchen is open from 9am -9pm daily. It’s on the 4th floor of The Antwerp Tower.
(A night club -Klub Goud- will be opening on the 21st floor soon …)
There are a couple of events which take place over all four days:
Antwerpen Proeft is a food and drink festival at Waagnatie which is near Eilandje. You can get tickets per day, or for all four days. It takes place inside the events venue, but also outside at Bocadero, – a summer bar at this location, which opens officially next weekend on the 13th.
Another four day event is the Zeezichtfeesten on Dageraadplaats, with performances and activities for all ages.
BATS have their regular opening evening on the first Friday of every month from 8.30pm. Go and join them at their theatre bar if you would like to find out more about being involved in English speaking theatre productions in Antwerp.
Grand Bazar is open for Mother’s Day treats and offers from 13.30 -5.30pm (also on Saturday)
Another edition of Handgemaakt (handmade) market in Kavka (on the Oudaan, opposite the big police station building) from 1pm -6pm. Free entry. I got some very pretty little pieces of jewellery here as Christmas gifts at the end of last year. Get a last minute Mother’s Day gift with a difference (see Sunday).
There’s a record fair at the bar Bato Batu on Lange Nieuwstraat, 12 -6pm, and MARTA (farmers’ market) takes place on Kattendijkdok between 9 and 4. MARTA is going to be a regular fixture on the first Saturday of each month.
Sunday is Mother’s Day in Belgium and in various countries around the world (not to be confused with the specifically Antwerp Mother’s Day on August 15th each year. Because we like to be different).
Bouger bouger is a nice neighbourhood event in Borgerhout on the Krugerplein food drink, DJs, a fleamarket and lots of space to play for kids.
Did you know that the roadworks on the Leien have unearthed a section of the Antwerp city wall built by the Spanish in the 16th?
On Sunday between 11 and 5pm you can go and see it (on the corner where Maria-Theresialei meets Frankrijklei).
There’s a Markt van Morgen from midday on Kloosterstraat -a market for local designers and creatives selling art, jewellery and accessories. There will also be food and DJs. Should you perchance have neglected to buy mum a gift, this would be a good place to put that right.
SKETCH is back, in Plein Publiek -its mission is to engage everyone in drawing and it provides the materials for you to join in, and local artists to inspire you. Even if you don’t want to draw you can come and watch the artists sketch and have a drink.
It’s the final chance to be involved in the Coming World Remember Me project at CWRM @ Het Steen where you can make a sculpture out of clay to honour one of the Belgian fallen of World War One. These sculptures will form an installation in Ypres which will be opened in 2018. Each one will incorporate a dog tag with the name of a soldier. You will be provided with the dog tag.
The weather is promising to be great -no, really, it is! No showers forecast this weekend, and a possible max of 25 degrees on Saturday, so get out and enjoy all the outside events without packing a bunch of raincoats and umbrellas. It might even be time to break out the sunscreen – especially for kids. Have a sunny weekend! (image from Pixabay)