The Lanterns are returning to Chester Zoo later this year and it’s ready to bring a much-needed festive feeling to what has been a turbulent year.
Chester Zoo is inviting you to “discover the magic” as its famous lantern festival returns for 2020.
Now in its ninth year, The Lanterns – a popular wintertime celebration which has previously received widespread public acclaim – lets visitors experience the zoo in an after-hours setting on a trail in the dark, taking in illuminated wildlife, colourful lanterns and enchanting costumed characters along the way.
According to the Chester Zoo website, this year’s starlit Christmas is set to be “more enchanting than ever before”.
“Escape to our eleven fantastical worlds, each different from the last, that will take you on an illuminating adventure like no other! Be immersed in this magical and uniquely Chester Zoo evening event that’s inspired by some of our favourite festive family tales, giving you the chance to see the zoo in a whole new light.”
“This year’s route will take you on a journey to discover faraway lands that will have your imagination running wild, each filled to the brim with colourful lanterns, spectacular costumed characters and Christmas scenes.”
If you want to be sure you’ll secure your tickets though, you’ll need to book in advance as this year, as is to be expected, demand for tickets to The Lanterns is set to be even higher with visitor numbers having had to be reduced to comply with necessary social distancing measures amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Tickets are currently on sale now.
Jon Turley – Head of Guest Experience at Chester Zoo – said: “Events that help us to bring some additional income into our charity will be absolutely crucial in securing the future of our zoo and our species-saving work.
“That’s why we’re so, so excited to be able to bring The Lanterns back again this year.
“With safety and social distancing firmly at the forefront of our minds, far fewer tickets have been made available for our event this time around, which might just make it an even more magical experience for those who secure a ticket.
“We’re planning to transform the zoo into a spectacular winter wonderland, featuring 11 fantastical worlds. Guests will be welcomed into an exotic world of colour and movement, where larger than life illuminations and animal characters await.
“Making a return this year will be our popular ‘Underwater’ world, which will transport visitors to the bottom of the sea where they’ll discover a giant show-stopping octopus.”
He continued: “We’ve made a few adjustments so that there will be less physical interaction with visitors this time, but we’re sure that our array of never-before-seen features will ensure guests will make memories that last a lifetime.
“We can’t wait to welcome people back to The Lanterns, see lots of big smiles on faces and, at the same time, raise valuable funds so we can continue our mission of preventing extinction as a wildlife conservation charity.”
As a charity zoo, all tickets purchased for The Lanterns are “vital” to Chester Zoo’s survival.
Tickets are now on sale for selected dates from Friday 13th November – Wednesday 23rd December. Children’s tickets start from £13.50, adult tickets start from £16 and you can book online via the Chester Zoo website here.
You can find more information about The Lanterns at Chester Zoo here.
Sneak peak at Vue cinema’s fancy upgrade at Printworks, including reclining seats in every screen
The Vue cinema inside the Printworks has undergone a major refurbishment and is set to reopen in the next few weeks.
The city centre entertainment complex is home to one of the largest IMAX screens in Europe, which has also been refurbished.
When it fully reopens in early September, Vue Manchester Printworks will have luxury recliner seats in every screen – and ticket prices as low as £4.99.
A sneak peak video shared by the cinema group shows rows of smart leather seats, with neon orange detailing.
The makeover will also include a revamped retail offering, from Coke Freestyle machines to draught beer taps.
Vue has undertaken the refurbishment project in stages, so 12 screens already have the benefit of the upgraded recliner seating.
It’s all ready for audiences to watch summer blockbusters including Minions: Rise of Gru, DC League of Super-Pets and Marvel Studio’s latest adventure Thor: Love and Thunder.
Ian Harris, general manager at Vue Manchester Printworks, said: “As the home of the biggest screen in Manchester, we’ve always taken pride in offering the very best of big screen entertainment possible for film fans and families looking to escape into the latest blockbusters.
“With our fully refreshed IMAX screen and newly installed Recliner offering across all 19 of our other screens, we’re hugely excited to see the people of Manchester enjoy the best that film and big screen events have to offer in the best and most luxurious seats in the house.”
Every year, the British Street Food Awards highlights the very best chefs from the scene – and this summer, the northern heat will be held right here in Manchester.
Hosted by Manchester’s biggest and friendliest street food operator GRUB in partnership with newcomer Circle Square, the city will welcome the Northern Heat of the British Street Food Awards (BSFA) on Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 August.
This year, the line up includes local favourites Unagi street food and suhi, 2020 Best Burger winners Porco and Kara’s Kitchen, who is known for serving up paellas with a twist.
That’s not all. You’ll also find authentic Sri Lankan food from Archchi’s, Posh Street Food from former Master Chef Professional Matei Baran, Shoot The Bull, plus more from Ted’s tacos, Skullduggery, Pellizco and DOSA.
Taking place at Circle Square from 12 noon until 8pm, across two days some of the best street food traders in the region will come together for the event with a fully-stocked beer bar from North Brewing Co.
Food fans will have a chance to sample some of the best street food traders from across the region and cast their votes for the People’s Choice over the weekend alongside a stellar line-up of judges, including former BSFA champion Claire Kelsey of Ginger’s Comfort Emporium inside Afflecks.
The event in Manchester will mark the last of four regional heats, at the end of which the winners will be chosen by the general public and expert judges.
The winners will then go on to the grand finals in London next month.