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Four good things to do this weekend

Dave Thackarey recommends beer in Waterloo, Shakespeare at Formby, Arabic arts in Liverpool and St Helens too

Published on June 30th 2010.

Four good things to do this weekend

Ale be thereSnap up tickets to the hotly-vaunted and first-ever Waterloo Beer Festival, sponsored by Liverpool Organic Brewery.

Tickets have only been on sale in advance, here on Confidential, but we have closed the pay online option now. There are still a teeny tiny handful left, but they are expected to sell out so turn up early for a session if you want to get in.

Liverpool Organic Brewery has fast made a name for itself among the Mersey ale brigade and beyond.

The event features an evening session on Thursday, with both afternoon and evening sessions on Friday and Saturday.

Beers range from the tangy to the downright tasty, from microbreweries and big names on the circuit. My tip for the top three tipples at the festival is Endurance, from Cambrinus Craft Brewery; Blonde Moment, from Rainford's George Wright Brewing Company; and Liverpool Organic Brewery's "Kitty Wilkinson" Chocolate and Vanilla Stout, a dynamite concoction of 5% ABV that sets us up nicely for the winter ahead.

Proceeds from the Waterloo Beer Festival will be donated to Jospice in Thornton.

Waterloo Beer Festival, Old Christ Church, Waterloo Road, L22.To Saturday, July 3. Details of daily sessions at www.waterloobeerfestival.com/

Rock the Casbah
Happy hours at the (kaz)bar are back and the unseasonable summer weather feels distinctly at home as the award-winning Liverpool Arabic Arts Festival (LAAF) hits town.

Returning for the ninth year and another 10 days of intoxicating aromas and multimedia magic, it's a spectacular celebration of the ancient cultural melting pot of Arabia and beyond.

The sounds and colours of an Arabian bazaar come to the Bluecoat in an afternoon of live music, dance, storytelling, workshops, stalls and food, indoors and out. Suitable for all ages. Featuring mystical music from Sudan courtesy of Rango, Egyptian ensemble El Minyawi, and dance from Ya Raqs. While at the Merseyside Maritime Museum on Sunday, there's an afternoon of outdoor Arabic music and performance on the waterfront site: Plus drop-in Arabic arts textile workshops by artist Nawal Gebreel and mini Arabic dance workshop and performance with Caroline Afifi.

Films, art, workshops, munchies and music - whatever the weather, you're having a LAAF.

Liverpool Arabic Arts Festival, July 2 (Friday) to 11, venues vary.For more info go to www.arabicartsfestival.co.uk

Sherdley temple
Jump in the car and head over to St Helens' Sherdley Park for the annual town's annual festival packed with family fun and exuberance.

The two-day event will be bursting with fun and activities for everyone! The fast-paced, high adrenalin Main Arena includes motorbike and horse stunts shows, falconry and dog displays. There will be rugby coaching sessions from Saints RLFC and the popular Children’s World will have a beach, Punch and Judy, donkeys, entertaining children’s shows to keep the little ones busy!

Add in a funfair, Morris Dancing for dads, classic cars and miniature steam engines and you've got a weekend for everyone.

Did we mention the festival's menagerie of the bizarre with meerkats, snakes and scorpions jostling for your attention?

St Helens Festival 2010, Sherdley Park, Marshalls Cross Road, WA9 5DE.Saturday and Sunday, July 3 and 4. Opens 12noon; funfair open til 9pm. Admission free.

Point wins prizes
Oddsocks return to Formby Point with another high-energy, feel-good, family theatre show and this summer it’s the magical, spectacular A Midsummer Night’s Dream, performed on their Elizabethan pageant wagon with live music, exhilarating circus skills and some outrageous hunting dogs!

Oddsocks have a reputation for delighting audiences with their inspired approach to Shakespeare’s plays and their trademark interactive style and A Midsummer Nights Dream continues the legacy, with it’s easy-to-follow storyline and hilarious characters is perfect for the Oddsocks treatment and will be a memorable production.

A Midsummer’s Night Dream is just one part of the Picnic @ The Point event, which starts at 11am and runs until 4pm. Come along with your family and have a look round at the stalls, join in on a ranger tour, arts workshops and lots more!

Oddsocks/ A Midsummer Night's Dream 1.30pm. This event is FREE.(for more info go to www.seftonarts.co.uk)

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