Southport Pleasureland has announced exciting plans to run its biggest and best Day of the Dead Spectacular yet this November, and launch its Winter Wonderland North in December too.
The South American-inspired Day of the Dead event is an increasingly popular high-octane after-dark annual “celebration of life” at the seaside resort – returning for its third year – and it will feature colourful samba drummers, fire spinners, fire-eaters, stilt-walkers, music with a live DJ, the park’s rides fully illuminated and running, and will close out with a dramatic fireworks finale.
The park will be transformed into a “theatre of light and music” against a fabulous fiesta atmosphere.
Music on the night will be provided by Liverpool’s-own The Katumba Drum Band – who have performed at some of the world’s biggest events including Africa Oyé, Brazilica, Amsterdam Carnival and Recife Carnival, Brazil – and will bring a fierce fusion of UK big beat, Caribbean calypso, and the carnivals of North East Brazil to create an explosion of rhythmic revelry that you can’t help but dance to.
The family-friendly ‘Day of the Dead’ celebration – which will see the park “festooned with bright and beautiful sugar skulls” – is set to take place on Saturday 14th November.
It will include outdoor food concessions and entertainments – with proven COVID-19 safety measures in place – and to ensure effective social distancing measures are upheld, this year’s event will feature acts on a purpose-built stage with a one-way system for visitors to enter and leave the show area.
Gates to the park will open at 5pm.
Tickets for non-riders are £9.99 – include all the entertainments and fireworks – and then the ‘rider’ ticket price of £24.50, which includes unlimited rides.
But, that’s not all Pleasureland has in store for 2020.
Norman Wallis – CEO at Southport Pleasureland – said: “Day of the Dead has become a real hit, but we didn’t want to leave it at that, so we are staging Winter Wonderland North.”
He continued: “We have been considering and planning a Winter Wonderland North event for some time. We have been open with full coronavirus safety measures in place for many months [and] we know what we’re doing, what works, and how to make sure people understand the part they have to play in keeping everyone safe.
“Those who’ve visited the park will know that we take great care over the grounds and landscaping [and] we’ve planted many Christmas trees which, along with our exiting established trees, will be decorated with beautiful Christmas lights.”
Winter Wonderland North is due to start on Saturday 28th & Sunday 29th November.
“All of the rides and buildings will be shimmering as the park pulls on its ‘Winter Wow’ from the first weekend… and [will] then be open every weekend in December until it opens daily (with the exception of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day) until 3rd January 2021.” said Norman.
He continued: “Father Christmas – and the park is hoping to coax his reindeer to join him – will be in his COVID-safe grotto residence, a new indoor ride around Santa’s workshop is under construction, and a German-style Christmas Market offers Christmas treats and festive food and drink
“So there will be plenty to see and do.”
All tickets to the celebrations must be booked online in advance of your visit.
You can book yours, find more information about the events, and familiarise yourself with all social distancing / COVID-safe precautions via the Southport Pleasureland website here.
Canal-side Manchester hotel named one Britain’s best just one year after opening
One of Manchester’s newest hotels has been named as one of the best in Britain just a year after it opened.
Leven, a canal-side spot in the Gay Village, only opened its doors for the first time last December and has already gained itself some serious recognition.
The Times has published its list of The Best Places to Stay 2023, and Leven was the only Manchester hotel to get the nod from the prestigious guide.
Leven took over a former 20th century warehouse on the corner of Canal Street and Chorlton Street last year and turned it into a stylish, luxurious hotel.
Each room includes a free pair of limited-edition branded socks as well as a breakfast smoothie, plus bespoke furniture, natural mattresses and fast wifi.
Its penthouse suite sprawls over two floors, complete with sitting room, large kitchen and dining area, plus a terrace, two bedrooms, and three bathrooms.
Maya will take over three floors, from a canal-side brasserie space serving modern-European classics to a lower ground-floor, elegantly designed dining room that will centre around an ingredient-led, locally sourced and seasonal menu.
In its review, The Times said: “The Leven is housed in a handsome red-brick, former cotton warehouse on Canal Street. It’s now a mix of an intimate boutique hotel and an aparthotel, with an industrial design that provides personality without fuss.
“This is the spot for the kind of person who might book an Airbnb but wants the services, style and location of a hotel. Many of the rooms come with handy kitchens and are great value for money if you want an apartment without the price tag.
“Bedrooms come with tone-on-tone greys, black Crittall windows, exposed brick, green velvet sofas and blue velvet bed frames.”
The paper was particularly impressed with Leven’s location, writing: “This is where the Leven really scores. It’s on pedestrianised Canal Street in Manchester, alongside the Rochdale canal, lined with alfresco tables and chairs and strung with overhead lightbulbs — great for a glass of wine and people-watching.
“The Gay Village has a thriving LGBTQ+ community, where Saturday night spills over into Sunday afternoon.
“The Leven looks over the canal towards Kampus — a cluster of newly renovated warehouses on cobbled streets that’s home to indie outlets such as Pollen sourdough bakery, Beeswing wine bar, Kampus General Store, and Madre for tacos and tequila.”
“Recently I’ve been diagnosed with a very rare neurological disorder called stiff person syndrome, which effects something like one in a million people.
“While we are still learning about this rare condition we now know this is what’s been causing all of the spasms I’ve been having.
“Unfortunately these spasms affect every aspect of my daily life, sometimes causing difficulties when I walk and not allowing me to use my vocal chords to sing the way I’m used to.”
Celine continued: “I have a great team of doctors working alongside me to help me get better, and my precious children who are supporting me and giving me hope,” she said. “I’m working hard with my sports medicine therapist every day to build back my strength and my ability to perform again, but I have to admit it’s been a struggle.
“All I know is singing, it’s what I’ve done all my life and it’s what I love to do the most. I miss you so much, I miss seeing all of you, being on the stage, performing for you. I always give 100% when I do my shows but my condition is not allowing me to give you that right now.”
The star added: “This is my focus and I’m doing everything that I can to recuperate. I want to thank you so much for your encouraging wishes of love and support on my social media. This means a lot to me. Take care of yourselves, be well. I love you guys so much. And I really hope I can see you again real soon.”