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Monday, 25 May 2015

What's on in the Lake District?

We have a list of what's on in the Lake District that includes festivals, theatre, family fun, days out ideas and adventure around Cumbria's' mountains and lakes.

If you're looking for things to do in the Lake District National Park you might head to towns like Keswick, Bowness, Windermere and Cockermouth or seek out the charm and beauty of traditional Lakeland settings. But whether it's the honeypot towns of the Lake District or its quieter villages and countryside you're sure never to be far away from interesting events and family activities.

It’s not surprising that many of the biggest events are held over the summer months. If you fancy watching some Cumberland and Westmorland wrestling, or seeing traditional breeds of sheep and cattle – and much more besides – then there are plenty of fairs and shows on, and not only in or near the larger towns. Check out those held at Loweswater, Ullswater (Patterdale), Coniston, Hesket Newmarket and the Lakeland Country Fair at Torver.

Other fairs and shows include sheepdog trials, such as the Rydal Sheepdog trials and Hounds Show (August). And at the end of August one of the oldest shows in the calendar takes place: the Grasmere Sports and Show. Now in its 162nd year, this show includes fell races, mountain bike races and activities for children.

Newer events which have proved immensely popular include the Lakeland Trails series of trail runs, which have expanded to include a variety of distances. These are held at varying locations throughout the Lake District, such as Staveley and Coniston. Similarly the Lakeland 50 and 100 ultramarathons, which take place at the end of July, are now at capacity, and if you want to enter you need to do so within days of applications opening. All have a great festive feel, with children's events and activities running along side those for adults. On-road the annual Brathay Windermere marathon, one of the most scenic road races in Britain, is always popular and has associated events for all the family: and there are plenty of triathlons to choose from if you want to swim and cycle as well as running.

Similarly with an increase in the popularity of open water swimming, the Great North Swim which takes place in Windermere each year, has increased to include races of different lengths and for different abilities over an entire weekend. Wild swimming weekends and courses are also run elsewhere around the Lake District as are, not surprisingly, all sorts of outdoor and adventure-based activities.

But perhaps one of the most intriguing competitions is the World’s Biggest Liar competition which takes place in the Bridge Inn at Santon, Wasdale each November and attracts visitors and participants from around the globe. The winner is the person who can tell the most convincing lie within an allocated time of 5 minutes.

Other superlatives surround the pub: England’s highest mountain (Scafell Pike), deepest lake (Wastwater) and smallest church (St. Olaf’s).

If all this activity is making you feel like putting your feet up, then opportunities to do so in the Lake District also abound. Try Ireby (folk) Music Festival, in the less well-known but beautiful area of the Caldbeck Fells ‘back of Skiddaw’. Hawkshead holds a ‘party in the park’ each summer where you can go to listen to live music. And in early August 2015 the Lake District Summer Music Festival attracts classical musicians from all over the globe, to perform at various village and church halls in these most beautiful of surroundings. Zeffirellis in Ambleside complements the programme with live streaming of opera and ballet from some of the world’s most prestigious theatres.

With so much going on in the Lake District, the only problem is choosing when to visit and which event to go to. It could take a lifetime to try them all out: why go anywhere else?!
 

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Events listings

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EVENTVENUEDATE/TIMECATEGORY
Face Value: Portraiture from the Arts Council CollectionAbbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal 25 May 2015Art exhibitions
Gallery TalksAbbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal 25 May 2015 , 14:00Talks and Lectures
The Aegean Suite by Barbara HepworthAbbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal 25 May 2015Art exhibitions
National Trust: Kite Making - 50 thingsAllan Bank, Grasmere25 May 2015 , 13:00Days out
Evelyn De Morgan: Artist of PeaceBlackwell, The Arts & Crafts House, Bowness-on-Windermere25 May 2015Art exhibitions
Astral CircusBrockhole, Windermere25 May 2015 , 11:00 - 16:00Children's and family events • Days out
May Bank Holiday MondayCartmel Racecourse , Grange-over-Sands25 May 2015 , 10:00Children's and family events • Others
Lakes IgniteCumbria, Cumbria25 May 2015Art exhibitions • Days out
Half-term Heroes HuntDove Cottage, Grasmere25 May 2015Children's and family events
Wordsworth, War & WaterlooDove Cottage, Grasmere25 May 2015Art exhibitions
National Trust: National Go Canoeing weekFell Foot, Lake District25 May 2015 , 10:00 - 16:00Days out • Sport and Adventure
Wainwright: A Love Letter to the Lakeland FellsKeswick Museum and Art Gallery, Keswick25 May 2015Art exhibitions
The Theory Of Everything (12A)Kirkgate Centre, Cockermouth25 May 2015 , 20:00Film
MusicZone WorkingtonMonroe's Bar, Carnegie Theatre, Workington25 May 2015 , 17:30 - 19:30Community events • Live music • Workshops
Muncaster FestivalMuncaster Castle, Muncaster25 May 2015Festival
Twentieth Century FashionMuseum of Lakeland Life and Industry, Kendal25 May 2015Art exhibitions
Alice In Wonderland (1951 Version) (U)Rheged, Penrith25 May 2015Film
C- Art Cumbrian Artist Of The YearRheged, Penrith25 May 2015 , 10:30 - 16:30Art exhibitions
C-Art Cumbrian Artist of the Year ExhibitionRheged, Penrith25 May 2015Art exhibitions
Daily Film: D Day Normandy 1944 3DRheged, Penrith25 May 2015Film
Daily Film: Great Apes 3DRheged, Penrith25 May 2015Film
Daily Film: Life on a Mountain - Scafell PikeRheged, Penrith25 May 2015Film
GO BIG WITH CREATION STATIONRheged, Penrith25 May 2015Children's and family events • Workshops
Go Big With Creation StationRheged, Penrith25 May 2015Children's and family events • Craft events
Make Your Own Clay OwlRheged, Penrith25 May 2015 , 10:00Children's and family events • Workshops
MAKE YOUR OWN CLAY OWLRheged, Penrith25 May 2015 , 10:00Children's and family events • Workshops
MAKE YOUR OWN SCOTCH ARROWRheged, Penrith25 May 2015 , 10:00Children's and family events • Workshops
Make Your Own Scotch ArrowRheged, Penrith25 May 2015 , 10:00Children's and family events • Workshops
OWLS AT RHEGEDRheged, Penrith25 May 2015 , 10:00 - 16:00Talks and Lectures
Owls At RhegedRheged, Penrith25 May 2015 , 10:00 - 16:00Children's and family events
Cumbria Live listings