Melbourne Minute – Docklands Arts, Laughs and Blues Festival

There’s still a couple of days left of school holidays and if you’ve run out of ideas to entertain the kids, never fear, as today marks the start of the Docklands Arts, Laughs and Blues Festival, which you guessed it, features all things arts, laughs and blues.

Running for five days until Sunday, the Wonderland Spiegeltent will be the centre of the action where one of the major highlights will be Michael Boyd’s Spellbound Illusion Spectacular on daily.

Wonderland Fun Park will host family day on Saturday featuring Snap’s Kakadu Club with ventriloquist Lindi Jane, and mini puppet show performed by Lana Schwarcz, The Tiniest Show on Earth.

For adults, there’s the Docklands Arts, Laughs and Blues Comedy Gala on Saturday night starring funny men Peter Helliar and Bob Franklin.

And on Sunday, there’ll be a free, all-day music festival with 20 Blues bands on five stages.

For more information and to book tickets visit docklandsartsandlaughsfestival.com.au.

And that’s the Docklands Arts, Laughs and Blues Festival for the Melbourne Minute.

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Melbourne Minute – Royal Melbourne Show

The Royal Melbourne Show kicks off this weekend at the Melbourne Showgrounds and while I highly recommend the planning app to make the most of your visit, here’s a guide to this year’s Show in a minute.

If you’ve got little ones then the Jayco Animal Nursery is the place to be, housing more than 450 animals and a patting pen.

For foodies, visit the Tastes of Victoria Pavilion, which is home to the Royal Melbourne Fine Food Deli and pop-up restaurant featuring dishes from some of Melbourne’s hottest restaurants.

If you’re a fan of MasterChef then take a behind-the-scenes look at the show on a Kitchen Tour – you may even bump into a former contestant!

Justice Crew and Dami Im are just some of the music stars that will perform in the Herald Sun Entertainment Dome, and finally, you simply can’t leave the Show without a show bag. This year there’s 385 on offer including the $2 iconic Bertie Beetle show bag.

The Royal Melbourne Show runs until Wednesday, 1 October.

For more information and to book tickets visit royalshow.com.au.

And that’s the Royal Melbourne Show for the Melbourne Minute.

Melbourne Minute – Melbourne’s Best Market Traders

Melbourne’s Best Market Traders have been revealed this week in the 2014 MYOB Melbourne Market Awards as part of Melbourne Market Week. There were 12 categories with winners selected from Melbourne’s big four markets.

The Prahran Market was home to the most winners including Gary’s Quality Meats in the category of ‘Meat’, Claringbold’s Seafood in ‘Seafood’, Sweet Greek in ‘Speciality Food’, Flawless Flowers in ‘Nursery and Flowers’, Little Sweethearts in ‘Fashion and Accessories’ and The Mussel Pot in ‘Eateries’.

At the Queen Victoria Market, the winners were The Chicken Pantry in the category of ‘Poultry and Game’ and Vic Market Lotto in ‘Services’.

And at the South Melbourne Market, winners included Padre Coffee in the category of ‘Coffee’, Emerald Hill Deli in ‘Delicatessen’, Georgie’s Harvest in ‘Fruit and Vegetables’ and The SuperCool in ‘General Merchandise’, which also won the MYOB Ultimate Best Trader Award.

Melbourne Market Week runs until this Sunday, 14 September. For more information visit marketsofmelbourne.com.au.

And that’s Melbourne’s Best Market Traders for the Melbourne Minute.

Melbourne Minute – Melbourne Spring Fashion Week

Australia’s fashion elite will descend on Melbourne from this Saturday for Melbourne Spring Fashion Week thanks to the City of Melbourne.

Running until Sunday, 7 September, the nine-day extravaganza will feature more than 40 of Australia’s most celebrated designers, brands and retailers who will present their new season looks.

Students from Melbourne’s best fashion schools will also have the opportunity to showcase their talent at a range of events including the Emerging Designer Market at the MSFW: Hub this Sunday and the following.

In fact, the MSFW: Hub located in the City Square will be the place to be throughout the entire week featuring free daily runways, pop-up retail stores, entertainment and the MSFW: Hub Bar offering food from renowned chefs Gavin Baker, formerly of The Fat Duck, and Pete Evans from My Kitchen Rules.

What’s more, Melbourne Spring Fashion Week also has its very own online store where you can shop the looks you see on the runway.

For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.melbourne.vic.gov.au/msfw.

And that’s Melbourne Spring Fashion Week for the Melbourne Minute.

Melbourne Minute – GLOW Winter Arts Festival

The City of Stonnington is currently in the midst of its inaugural GLOW Winter Arts Festival, celebrating all things arts and culture.

Running until Sunday in the suburbs of Prahran, Malvern, Armadale, Windsor, Toorak and South Yarra, one of the main highlights of the program is the Exxopolis Luminarium – an inflatable sculpture designed by Architects of Air from the UK.

Housed on the Jam Factory’s rooftop carpark, Exxopolis is 53 metres in length and nine metres in height, occupying the space of half a football field!

Visitors to Exxopolis can wander through the winding tunnels and marvel at the domed ceilings, colourful light projections and music for just $15 per person.

Other highlights of the program include ‘Flick ‘n’ Feasts’ in the Prahran Market Laneway, where you can catch a movie and tuck into a meal from the food trucks.

Or check out the list of comedy acts as part of the Glow Comedy Club at Functions on Chapel.

For more information, visit www.glowfestival.com.au.

And that’s the GLOW Winter Arts Festival for the Melbourne Minute.

Melbourne’s Best Cheap Eats

We all love a cheap eat and this week the Herald Sun shared the favourite haunts of Melbourne’s top chefs.

Karen Martini from Mr Wolf votes Tiba’s Restaurant in Sydney Road, Brunswick for its delicious homemade bread and dip, while Grossi Florentino’s Guy Grossi says MoVida Next Door as his number one choice with the anchovies a must.

Thomas Woods from Woodland House can’t go past the soft shell crab burger at Hammer and Tong in Brunswick Street, Fitzroy and Kemal Barut of Lezzet Turkish Restaurant gives a huge wrap to Oasis Bakery in Murrumbeena for its $5 Turkish ‘pide’ pizzas.

And finally, Saint Crispin’s Scott Pickett heads across the road to Pasta Classica for an Italian fix, while Jacques Reymond, soon to open L’Hotel Gitan, is a big fan of Hanoi Hannah in Prahran for its tasty Vietnamese cuisine.

And that’s Melbourne’s best cheap eats for the Melbourne Minute.

Melbourne Minute – Melbourne’s Best Roof Top Bars in Winter

Melbourne is renouned for its funky roof top bars, and while generally they lend themselves to sipping cocktails on a balmy summer’s night, they’re also pretty good in winter too. Here’s Melbourne’s best roof top bars in winter for the Melbourne Minute.

On top of the Melbourne Supper Club on Spring Street is Siglo, which enjoys views of St Patrick’s Cathedral and Parliament House, while over on Bourke Street you can have your own ‘Garden Party’ on the Terrace at Madame Brussels, reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland.

Down the road above The Carlton is tropical oasis, Palmz, which will make you feel like you’re really away from it all, while over at The Deck above the Waterside Hotel there’s a retractable roof and ambient fireplace to keep guests warm.

In the North, you’ll find Naked in the Sky in Fitzroy with spectacular views of the city skyline and bustling Brunswick Street below, and in the South, The Emerson is the go to roof top complete with its very own cooking station.

And that’s Melbourne’s best roof top bars in winter for the Melbourne Minute.

Melbourne Minute – Melbourne International Film Festival

The annual Melbourne International Film Festival, now in its 62nd year, kicks off next Thursday, 31 July and will showcase the best in current film from around the world as well as new Australian cinema.

More than 250 films will be shown at twelve venues across the city in 20 streams including Australian Showcase, Documentaries and Night Shift featuring vampires, zombies and werewolves.

Tickets are still available for the Opening Night Gala where for $150 you’ll get a trip down the red carpet, seats to time travel flick, Predestination by the Spierig Brothers, and entry into the official after party with the stars, all taking place at Hamer Hall at the Arts Centre.

Another higlight on the calendar is the Centrepiece Gala, celebrating local filmmaking with the world premiere of sexy crime drama, Cut Snake, and the halfway point of festival on Saturday, 9 August.

For more information on the Melbourne International Film Festival and to book tickets visit www.miff.com.au

And that’s the Melbourne International Film Festival for the Melbourne Minute.

Melbourne Minute – The city’s best Sunday roasts

While the traditional Sunday roast has its origins in Britain and Ireland, there’s plenty to go around in Melbourne. Planning your weekend starts here with where you’ll find the city’s best Sunday roasts for the Melbourne Minute.

The Commoner in Fitzroy dishes up modern British cuisine and has been widely lauded for its take on the Sunday roast since it opened in 2009.

At The Penny Black in Brunswick, you’ll find one of the cheapest Sunday roasts in town at just $12 a pop, while at the Richmond Club Hotel you can have your Sunday roast with a side of live music.

At Estelle in Northcote, it’s all about degustation dining where for $50 you get an additional two courses with your Sunday roast plus a glass of wine.

And at The Roast Kitchen in Kew you can have your Sunday roast any day of the week, dine in or take away.

And that’s Melbourne’s best Sunday roasts for the Melbourne Minute

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