Top Things to do in the West End

Top things to do in the west end of Glasgow

July and August

Top things to do in the west end

I simply cannot believe I am writing this column for the middle of the year already.  What once was top Crimbo Calamities has quickly manifested to full blown Summer Shenanigans.  And, oh my, are there a plethora of shenanigans to choose from.

Top for Thespian Theatre

It can’t be time for Bard in the Botanics?  Oh yes it can…(sorry wrong genre).  Our favourite Shakespearean Festival will be well underway by our Summer Edition.  But which of dear Willie’s masterpieces can we still hope to catch this July?  Well, if you are quick of the mark, you can catch Julius Caesar which will be running until 8th July.  So, friends, romans, countrymen, lend me your ears (well eyes actually). This is a new version of the bard’s thrilling political drama, presented outdoors at the Botanics which always feels that bit more immersive.  Also, until 8th July is the glorious Henry IV, parts 1 and 2.  The play has just 4 actors relaying this historical drama of Henry IV, crowed after Richard II, facing a rebellious country, and failing health.  The play will take place in the magnificent Kibble Palace.  

Moving away from the bard and venturing into the hilarious mirth of Oscar Wild, The Importance of Being Ernest.  Comedy writing far in advance of it’s time, commenting on the ridiculous ideals of upper-class snobbery, this production has a contemporary edge to it.  And so many fabulous quotes it’s difficult to pick a favourite.  Possibly, ‘I never travel without my diary.  One should always have something sensational to read on the train’. Ahhh, golden!  It’s Bard in the Botanics first dipping of its toe into the Kibble Koi Carp pool of Oscar Wilde.  Let’s hope it’s not their last.  

Finally, and again a departure from Shakespeare, the troupe take a foray into Robert Louis Stevenson’s thrilling novella, Jekyll, and Hyde. Gabriel Utterson is worried about her friend Henry Jekyll, who seems a little out of sorts.  Of course, we know why, but that won’t stop you the audience, sitting in suspense awaiting the terrifying arrival of you-know-who!!!! Goosepimples all round – and it won’t just be the draft in the Kibble Palace.

Bard in the Botanics 2023 
21st June – 29th July

Glasgow Botanic Gardens     

Top Things for a Trip to Loch Lomond and Beyond

It’s Summer, the kids are off.  Fancy a jaunt out of the city?  Loch Lomond Shores are always an accessible, low-chance-of-travel -sickness, option. This Summer sees Big Glasgow Comic Page (BGCP) Comic Con return to Balloch on 8th and 9th July.  With comic book traders, artists, crafts and meet-and-greet with superheroes and villains, I know where my boys will want to visit on that weekend!  Also, at Loch Lomond Shores in August there will be a fantastic Continental Market.  This 3-day event will feature gorgeous foods from further afield than the usual farmers markets.  What better than a view of the Loch whilst sampling cheese and olives.  Yummmm!

Take a trip with the kids down to the gorgeous island of Bute to the Bute Fest in July.  This is a weekend family-friendly live music and fringe event located on the beautiful Ettrick Bay.  Two stages will showcase the music whilst there will be a fabulous selection of local food and drink produce on offer.  What a lovely weekend doon-the-watter.

BGCP Comic Con
Loch Lomond Shores 8th-9th July

Loch Lomond Shores Continental Market
Loch Lomond Shores
11th-13th August and follow links

Bute Fest
Ettrick Bay
Isle of Bute
28th-30th July

Top (really Top) for Cycing

In fact it’s the biggest cycling event ever held. This August the UCI Cycling World Championships comes to our city. It’s the first event of its kind in cycling.  The greatest cyclists and riders will come together in Glasgow and across Scotland this August.  There will be events in mountain biking, BMXing, track and road races, to name but a few.  Across the city, spectators can watch their heroes at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, freestyling at Glasgow Green or at the Glasgow BMX Centre.  Further afield, events will take place at the mountain-bike nerve centres that are Glentress Forest in Peebles and the Nevis Range in Fort William.  The 11 days of competitions will see 13 separate

Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) World Championships.  With 2600 athletes taking part, 200 rainbow jerseys are up for grabs. For cycling enthusiasts, what an opportunity and for non-cycling enthusiasts, kind of think you will be by the end of this.

The UCI Cycling World Championships
3rd – 13th August 2023

Top for Photography

Robert Burns – A window on Ukraine is a collective of photographs from Glasgow Based photographer Robert Burns.  The distinctive observations reflect the country over the course of the photographer’s visits, since 2007.  Robert Burns relationship with the country began whilst on holiday in Crete in 2006.  There he met a group of Ukrainians and from there his documenting of Ukrainian life commenced.  His pictures depict normal Ukrainians living their lives in Kyiv and beyond.  With weddings, festivals, the joy of children at play, it’s a beautiful exhibition, reflecting a deep connection with the subject matter.  ‘I have made many friends in Ukraine and the archive is a major ongoing project. I always know that I can turn up at the Kupidon bar on Pushkinska Street and be greeted by friends’ says Burns.  And, oh, does his art reflect that affection.

Robert Burns – A Window on Ukraine
2nd June – 16th July
Hillhead Library

Top for, well, Summer!

Most certainly my favourite, FAVOURITE time of the year, Summer Nights at the Bandstand.  Oh yes, it’s back!  July and August see THE West End music event of the year back at Kelvingrove Bandstand and Amphitheatre.  On the programme this year: The Delgados, The Shires, Jack Savoretti, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Sugababes and Del Amitri.  It’s just too exciting!  As always there will be delicious street food vendors on hand for a nibble before you take your seat in the best theatre in town, the 2500 capacity Bandstand and Amphitheatre.  With many of the concerts sold out, don’t delay, and get those tickets for a brilliant outdoor summer night!

Summer Nights at the Bandstand
July/August 2023
Kelvingrove Bandstand and Amphitheatre and follow links for Summer Nights Tickets

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