Those pesky August winds have well and truly arrived, which means one thing and one thing only: it’s Ekka time! For some reason, when the show rolls in to town, everyone gets infected with a burning desire to eat, drink and do as many activities as possible and the rest of Brisbane brings out their A game (not that we’re complaining).
Sure, the strawberry ice creams and dagwood dogs are there calling out your name, but there’s a whole lot more than that going down in our magical metropolis over the next few days. Get your game face on, guys. Here is what’s on in Brisbane this weekend.
Thursday 6 August
Launch Party | Showroom
Everybody loves a housewarming, and the team at Showroom are no exception. The concept store you didn’t know you needed (but now couldn’t fathom ever living without) is moving in to new digs in the city and want you to come help them celebrate. Showroom stock an ever-rotating collection of products hand-picked from the Australian blogosphere’s favourite web-based brands, combining the best of online and in-store shopping. Their Thursday night soiree will offer delicious snacks and refreshments, so get down and have a peek at their new home and all the beautiful design wares it’s showcasing.
When: Thursday 6 August. 6 – 9 pm
Where: Showroom, 104 Edward St, Brisbane
RSVP: Click here
Late Night Shopping | Bakery Lane and Winn Lane
Thursday late night shopping is coming to the Valley this week, with the best of Bakery Lane and Winn Lane offering up their goodies. You’ll be able to snavel up records from Phase 4, new threads from Stock and Supply, The Outpost, Akira, House of Cards and Bow & Arrow, blooms from The Botanist, vintage pieces from Sunday Social, and sweet mags and books from Kunstler, among heaps of others. If all that shopping has got you feeling a bit peckish, you can chow down on a burger from Ben’s Burgers, treat yourself to dessert from I Heart Brownies and then wash it all down with a cheeky cold one at Bakery Lane’s resident bar, The Treehouse. Check out the Facebook event to see the full list of what’s on offer.
When: Thursday 6 August. Until 8 pm
Where: Bakery Lane. 690 Ann St, Fortitude Valley
Carnival Cocktail Menu | Dutch Courage Officers' Mess
The Ekka is just around the corner and the cool kids down at Dutch Courage are paying homage to all things carnie with their Carnival cocktail menu, which will be available until end of August. Whimsical concoctions like the Pavlova Sour and the Popcorn Paloma are on our drinking bucket list this month, and of course the warm and cosy vibe adds to the allure.
When: Until 31 August
Where: Dutch Courage Officers' Mess | Alfred Street, Fortitude Valley
Friday 7 August
The Ekka | RNA Showgrounds
It’s heeeereee!!! That countdown you’ve had going since your last Bertie Beetle and strawberry ice cream combo is finally over. Ekka 2015, welcome. It’s great to see you. Over the next ten big days the RNA Showgrounds will play host to all your old favourites: the showbag pavilion, sideshow alley, baby animals, the Woolworths Pavillion, Stockmen’s Bar and Grill, pig racing, cattle competitions, sheep dog trials, the woodchop, canine competitions, TRANSFORMERS MONSTER TRUCKS and, of course, the nightly fireworks.
When: Friday 7 – Sunday 16 August
Where: RNA Showgrounds
Tickets: Click here
Saturday 8 August
A la Carte in the Park | Surfers Paradise
If what you’re after this weekend involves fine food, great wine, live music and a waterfront view, then it’s time to head down the coast. An annual gastronomic indulgence on the banks of the Nerang River, A la Carte in the Park is back this year to showcase the best chefs Surfers Paradise has to offer. The finest culinary experts from the city’s best restaurants and hotels will be offering up their top dishes, with demonstrations from feature chefs Henry Bongay from Misono Japanese Restaurant and Greg Benney from boutique hotel QT Gold Coast’s restaurant, Bazaar. There will also be food trucks galore, with Brooklyn Depot, Kono Pizza, Dick’s Donuts, The Kransky Brothers and The Organic Drink Co all rolling up. Download the full program of events here.
When: Saturday 8 August 11 am – 6 pm. Sunday 9 August 11 am – 5 pm
Where: Lionel Perry Park, Surfers Paradise
Tickets: $10 entry per day. Under 18s, students and seniors (65+) free
Tuesday 11 August
Beef Degustation | Kinglseys Steak & Crabhouse
Entrée. Beef. Main. Beef. Dessert. Beef. If that’s your ideal kind of meal, you’re in for a real treat. Kingsleys Steak & Crabhouse and Teys Australia are teaming up to bring Brisbane an exceptional six-course premium beef degustation unlike any other. The six courses will feature Grasslands premium beef, Teys’ certified Angus and Riverine premium beef with matched wines by Jim Barry.
When: Tuesday 11 August. 6 pm
Where: Kingsleys Steak & Crabhouse. Riparian Plaza. 71 Eagle St, Brisbane
Tickets: $99 pp. Bookings are essential. Call 1300 546 475
Wednesday 12 August
Winterfest 2015 | Riverlife
If you’re looking for a way to spend your Ekka Wednesday that may be a little more sophisticated than munchin’ on a dagwood dog and trying not to lose your groceries on the Gravitron, then you’re in luck! Look no further than Winterfest, where you can spend your day by the river basking in Brisbane’s beautiful winter sun, sipping on mulled wine or a hot chocolate rum and chilling out, maxing, relaxing all cool with great live music. A ticket gets you a complimentary drink upon arrival and your choice of winter warmer meal. Choose from Hungarian veal goulash, traditional German bratwurst or roast duck and wild mushroom pie, then treat yourself to a piping hot waffle with warm caramel sauce. There will be live entertainment on the main deck as well as a bunch of boutique market stalls, plus the legends behind it all are offering 50% off tickets for all Urban Listers. Score!
When: Wednesday 12 August. 1 – 7 pm
Where: Riverlife. Naval Stores, Kangaroo Point
Tickets: Click here for tickets and use the promo code ‘theurbanlist’ for 50% off tickets.
Don’t Miss Out
Mater Foundation’s Breast Ever Brunch
The month of August is your chance to make a difference to the lives of the 33 Australian women every day who are told, “You have cancer”, by hosting a ‘Breast Ever Brunch’. So bust out the bunting, munch on some macaroons and sample those finger sandwiches all in the name of a good cause. The Mater Foundation’s Mater Chicks in Pink are aiming to raise $242,000 this August to fund breast cancer support services and vital cancer research. The money will go towards an array of services including counselling, housecleaning services, mastectomy bras, hair pieces and financial aids. Find out how you can get involved as a host here.
Cannoli Pop Up Bar | Locale
Newstead’s resident Italian sweethearts, Locale, are about to make your weekend a whole lot sweeter with a cannoli pop up bar. Yep, that’s right. Take a deep breath. The pop-up is set to run from 7 am until 7 pm, but it’s going to be on a first-come, first-served basis so I would get there early if you know what’s good for you. Flavours are set to include vanilla crème patisserie, traditional chocolate, ricotta chocolate chip, Italian bacio, Limoncello and Baileys. Yep. You’re welcome.
When: Wednesday 19 August. 7 am – 7 pm
Looking for more things to do in Brisbane this month? Here's our August MINI Edition: our guide to the best events and new openings in Brisbane this month!
Image credit: Ariana Gillrie