June has been a good month. It’s whizzed by in a flash, but that’s how time always goes when you’re having fun isn’t it? It started with gorgeous sunshine and me finding my new flat, in the middle I took a week-long trip to Slovenia and Venice, and it’s finished with me moving into aforementioned flat and enjoying a beautiful meal at Ox Club for my boyfriend’s very belated birthday treat. I’ve said goodbye to a home I felt settled in and flatmates that I’ve lived with for over a year to move from a 5-bed in Headingley to a more adulty 2-bed in city centre, so there’s a definite sense of this being the end of an era, but sometimes change is exactly what you need to give life a little shake up.
Of course this kind of fun comes at a price, so I’ll be counting the pennies in July to make up for an extravagant June. Hopefully I can still have fun on a budget in Leeds this month – let’s see shall we?
1st: Big Disco
This might be one of the most awesome events of the year! The world’s biggest disco ball is coming to Leeds, and if that alone doesn’t sell this night to you then we are just not the same kind of person at all. Held primarily at Sheaf Street Cafeteria but also at venues across Leeds, the idea is that at 7.20 a song voted for by the public will be played by all participating venues and radio stations at the same time, so that all disco-ers across the city (an estimated 25,000 people) will be dancing to the same song at the same time. It’s going to be Leeds’ biggest ever party, and I can’t wait.
1st-3rd: Gin Festival Leeds
Starting on the same night is the Leeds leg of Gin Festival’s country-wide tour, hosted at the Town Hall. There are going to be over 100 gins on offer to try, plus a range of masterclasses, talks and entertainment and , of course, good food. These festivals are never particularly cheap, but with so many different gins available it’s a great opportunity to try out brands that don’t appear in the average bar, and once you’ve found your favourite you know what’s worth buying a bottle of to enjoy on the cheap at home!
7th-9th: Open Air Cinema at Harewood House
Over the second week in July The Luna Cinema are bringing three nights of pen-air cinema to Harewood House, with Labyrinth playing on Thursday night, Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Friday, and Dirty Dancing on Saturday. My friends and I have booked Dirty Dancing, a film I have never seen and never really felt any desire to, but we’ll take a picnic and lots of wine and I’ll be able to get pleasantly drunk under the stars with my best girl gang. That’s a good night in anyone’s book – finally seeing an iconic 80s classic is just an extra perk.
15th-17th: Leeds Yoga and Wellness Festival
I’ve been hearing a lot of good things about Yoga Hero in the past year, and having never come across a yoga class that works for me I might be ready to give this place a try now I’ve moved into city centre. The Yoga Hero team are running a Yoga and Wellness Festival in July that sounds like it’s going to be great fun for experienced yogis, but also really helpful for people wanting to hit the ground running as they get into yoga. There are tons of yoga classes scheduled for all abilities plus workshops, talks, and a few alternative activities like rock climbing, bootcamps and meditation.
22nd-7th August: Summer Series at Millennium Square
Millennium Square is one of the best-known hubs of Leeds life, and this summer it’s coming alive again hosting a range of cool events, from live gigs to outdoor cinema. The Cribs and Ocean Colour Scene are kicking off the fortnight in back-to-back live gigs on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, followed by 3 days of ‘The Film Night on the Square’ which includes screenings of Grease, Skyfall, Avengers Assemble and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. This is swiftly followed by an evening of classical music, then the Latino-themed ¡VAMOS! festival and a Motown night, with the Summer Series wrapping up on Sunday 7th August with Leeds Pride.
What are you up to in July? Let me know in the comments, or tweet me!