The end of summer is nigh, and we’re so ready to make the most of it before it disappears for another year. From fun events to brand new restaurants, we’ve rounded up the very best things to do in Manchester this September. Without further ado…
1. Enjoy an array of delicious food at the Manchester Food & Drink Festival
Marking its quarter-century anniversary of bringing some of the best street food and drink to the city, the Manchester Food & Drink Festival is set to make a grand return to Cathedral Gardens this September – with some special plans in store for the big celebration. Promising to be the ‘biggest yet’, this year’s festival will showcase some of the best local talent, bringing back the annual pop up food and drink village, a huge 25th-anniversary beer bar, a wine and gin bar, an artisan food market, tons of masterclasses, banquets and, of course, live music.
2. Witness a captivating candlelight concert at the unique location nestled in the Peaks
As part of the Candlelight Summer Series, a glowing concert will be heading to the Peak District, where Hans Zimmer’s melodies will be joined by those from other fantastic movie music composers, such as John Williams. The location of this unforgettable night of music will be the Buxton Crescent Hotel, which sits in the town of Buxton, a town surrounded by three sides of the Peak District National Park, and the highest market town in the country. Expect to hear recognisable compositions from the likes of Harry Potter, Sherlock Holmes and Kung Fu Panda on September 3. Tickets are available here.
3. Shop locally-made gifts and grub at Cutting Room Square’s Ancoats Pop-Up
Ancoats Pop-Up market is taking over the popular area of Cutting Room Square for the last time on September 10th and 11th until it returns with its Christmas markets. There, Mancs will be able to discover some incredible local talent, bringing the best homemade gifts, food, nick nacks and so much more. Find out more.
4. Enjoy steins and brats at Manchester’s very own ‘Manctoberfest’ party
Taking the iconic Oktoberfest and giving it a proper Manc twist, Manctoberfest is back in town for a weekend this October, and it’s set to be beer-tastic. Taking place at the Bowlers Exhibition Centre between September 30–October 2, the lively event will combine the Bavarian-themed extravaganza with some of the best indie and rock music hailing from Manchester. Revellers will get to experience a slice of Munich without the need for a passport: there’ll be music, beer, food and dancing all under one roof without even leaving the city. Grab tickets here.
5. Get a boost of positivity with the return of Fearne Cotton’s Happy Place Festival
Fearne Cotton’s Happy Place Festival is set to return to Cheshire’s Tatton Park this September, bringing with it bundles of positivity and activities for guests to enjoy. Taking place across the first weekend of September, both on the 3rd and 4th, the festival that promotes self-love and happiness is set to boast an incredibly positive line-up, with the likes of Rylan, Cel Spellman, Aicha McKenzie and, of course, Fearne herself in attendance this year.
6. Roam the famous cobbles of Coronation Street and meet the cast on this special tour
Fans of Coronation Street, rejoice! Because the hit soap’s official tour operators have announced the return of a very special kind of tour – one that may well (read: absolutely does) involve a cheeky little meet and greet with stars of the show themselves. Taking place on September 3, diehard fans can roam the famous cobbles, while taking selfies in front of some of the show’s landmark sights – including the Rovers Return, Roy’s Rolls and the Kabin. Coronation Street: The Tour’s aptly named ‘Star Tours’ are available to book now, with operators promising an appearance from a surprise cast member with each tour.
7. Let your hair down at the Buff Bingo bottomless brunch
Buff Bingo is back in town, with plenty of fun antics in store this September. Bringing four whole hours of live entertainment, guests can expect 1.5 hours of bottomless bubbles, tasty brunch dishes, hilarious drag performances, live DJs and, of course, butlers in the buff. It’s the perfect way to get together with friends, and naturally, tickets are selling pretty quick. Get yours here.
8. Roll on the floor laughing at this hilarious new comedy festival at Castlefield Bowl
Comedy fans rejoice, because a brand new festival taking place in Manchester has been announced – and the line-up is absolutely stellar. A welcome addition to the Manchester festival scene (which is currently dominated by food and music), Laughterama is set to bring some of the UK’s top talent to one place – many of which you’ll likely recognise from Netflix comedy specials and hit shows such as Taskmaster.
9. Sip on a wide selection of gin and rum at this drinks festival
Whether you’re thirsty for knowledge or you just want to party the night away, this gin and rum festival in Manchester on September 9 and 10 is for you. Treat yourself and let your hair down with your friends at the themed bars with tasty street food and a buzzing party atmosphere. There will be talks, master classes, free samples, great live entertainment and an award-winning resident DJ that will keep you entertained with music from all genres, so get ready for a Rumbelievable festival! Plus you can take home a complimentary Gin & Rum Festival Copa glass. Book tickets here.
10. Play nail-biting games at this brand new ‘Squid Game’ experience at Immersive Gamebox
Season one of Squid Game ended on a knife edge, but luckily for fans waiting in anticipation for the second season they can get more red light, green light action with the arrival of an immersive gaming experience dedicated to the show. This September, Immersive Gamebox will be giving fans the chance to play everyone’s favourite South Korean survival drama, Squid Game, in real life with the launch of a brand-new gaming experience in collaboration with Netflix.
11. Crack out your best dance moves at the Go Gaga bottomless brunch
Feel like getting your Gaga on this September? Celebrate the iconic artist with the world’s number one Lady Gaga impersonator, Donna Marie, with an incredibly fun bottomless brunch packed full of Gaga hits. Chow down on tasty brunch dishes alongside bottomless cocktails, dance to your favourite tracks, and enjoy fun drag performances throughout the four-hour event. Get tickets here.
12. Check out this new cocktail bar and karaoke den in Altrincham
Grab your friends and get ready to belt out your favourite tunes! Throw in some delicious cocktails and you’ve got yourself a great night out. Opening this September, is Altrincham’s newest cocktail and karaoke bar, Alibi, bringing with it a banging soundtrack, including forgotten tunes from the nineties and noughties, promising a night that guests won’t forget.
13. Tuck into brunch at Gooey’s newly opened bakery and cafe
Taking over the former Cat Cafe site in the Northern Quarter, Gooey’s new home boasts an in-house bakery, takeout coffee offering and a counter full of pastries, cookies, doughnuts and baked goods that we love so dearly. What’s more, the new Gooey will now serve their take on brunch; think bacon butties on Shokupan bread, whipped avo on toast, a show-stopping Gooey French Toast stuffed with dulce de leche and sides including house-made hash brown stacks and halloumi with a chilli jam. If it’s anything like their sweet treats, we are sold.
14. Relive 80s & 90s dance music at this showstopping candlelight concert
On September 16, the sounds of the 80s & 90s will descend upon the Manchester Cathedral. Dance music may have evolved but there’s nothing quite like the classics. Under the glow of candlelight Kaleidoscope Orchestra are offering a performance you won’t soon forget. The fourteen piece ensemble will be playing a tribute concert to the 80s & 90s Dance anthems you know and love by giving them a bit of a refresher, and you can get your tickets to see it here.
15. See a colourful display of lanterns at the Manchester Moon Festival
Chinese Global Network (CGN) presents the Manchester Moon Festival 2022, an autumnal event being held for three days between 9th to 11th of September in Manchester’s Chinatown. Located at Chinatown Car Park on Faulkner Street, the event will bring together the cultural and atmosphere of the Moon Festival which is a national celebration in China. During the three-day celebration, participants will be able to immerse themselves in the colourful displays of lanterns and a variety of foods related to this event.
16. Discover the untold story of Ursula the sea witch as the parody musical heads to The Lowry
Things are gonna get wet as critically acclaimed hit parody musical Unfortunate: The Untold Story of Ursula the Sea Witch pays a visit to The Lowry this September. It’s time everyone’s favourite Disney Diva Ursula took matters into her own tentacles by giving her take on what really happened all those years ago under the sea. With an original hot pop soundtrack and trademark filthy humour, it’s time to take the plunge and dive in to this year’s hottest night out as the legendary queer queen Ursula spills the tea.
17. Blow off some steam by hurling black puddings at Yorkshire puds
Forget wellie-wangling, it’s all about black pudding-lobbing. Taking place in Ramsbottom on September 11, the annual competition that is the ancient grudge between Yorkshire and Lancashire will play out. Hurling black puddings at a pile of Yorkshire puddings on a 20-foot high plinth, competitors have three turns in an attempt to knock down as many Yorkshire Puddings as possible (they are arranged in a pile of a dozen) and must throw underarm from a purpose built stand called the oche located on Bridge Street. Expect a lively, fun atmosphere and hundreds of puddings!
18. Get into formation at the Queen B bottomless brunch
All the single ladies (and not so single ladies!), it’s time to get into formation. Celebrating all things Beyonce this month, Cara Melle and a collective of London and Manchester’s best drag artists will be taking over On Bar, in Manchester’s Gay Village, with tons of performances and Beyonce hits to enjoy. Expect four hours of fun, alongside free-flowing booze, tasty brunch dishes and tons of opportunities to dance the day (or night) away. Get tickets here.
19. Get down to Media City and Salford Quays for a weekend of food, music, workshops and more
We Invented the Weekend is a bold and imaginative free festival for the North, this brand new festival, taking place on 10th and 11th September across Salford Quays and MediaCity, will celebrate the invention of the weekend, a world changing moment that took place in Greater Manchester in 1843. Marking this enormous achievement the Salford festival with be one massive, colourful, exciting weekend of music, theatre, sport, workshops, dancing, laughs, and more to celebrate the joy of free time, including a communal roast. We Invented the Weekend will take place on September 10 and 11.
20. Chow down on an epic sarnie with the arrival of sandwich shop Super Happy
Put down the sad lunch as as there’s a new Manchester spot on the horizon bringing with it some pretty impressive sandwich game, serving sarnies full to the brim with exciting flavours- your midday meal will never be the same again. Set to arrive this September, the people of Manchester needn’t go hungry as sandwich shop Super Happy may be closer to your doorstep or workplace than you think… And if not, it’s one you’re going to want to run, not walk to.
21. Potter around the Northern Quarter’s lovely Makers Market
Before the bad weather sets in, it’s well worth a potter around the lovely Makers Market on Oak Street, which pops up on the second Sunday of every month. Find bakers, artists and local gifts makers all in one square, with a huge variety of things to have a browse at on the day. Find out more.
22. Enjoy the last of the Manchester summer
Most importantly, if there’s one thing we should all do this month – its make the most of any sunshine we’re blessed with before it’s gone for another year!
Also published on Medium.