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17 Free Things To Do In Sydney This May

By Angela Law - 01 May 2016

Pyrmont Festival 2016

For all of you Sydney locals on a tight budget, this one’s for you. Because the only thing better than a tightly packed social calendar is one that you can enjoy without forking out your hard earned dosh. Save that for more important things. Like brunch. Or rent. You know, whichever.

Pyrmont Festival

Country charm hits the city this month at the sixth annual Pyrmont Festival. Over ten days, the best of the Mudgee wine region will be on show and you can expect wine dinners and tastings as well as art and photography exhibitions. The main event is a two-day headliner event on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th, complete with live music, rides, 100 food and wine stalls as well as free tastings galore.

Where: various locations in Pyrmont
When: Friday 13th – Sunday 22nd May

Comedy Night At The Tudor Hotel

For an intimate night of (free) comedy, the Tudor Hotel in Redfern is hosting weekly comedy nights throughout May. Picking up momentum since launching in December, The Tudor are pulling acts from around Australia. If you fancy yourself a bit of a comedian then you’re in luck; sign ups for the second half of the show are available on the night.

Where: The Tudor Hotel, Redfern
When: Thursday nights, 7.30-11pm

MAASive Lates: Fashion

As part of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Sydney, MAASive Lates will explore fashion as a collision between art, technology and mathematics through workshops covering everything from hat and jewellery making to maths and fashion. You’ll be well looked after with food and drinks available from Junction Café and a pop-up nail salon by Nail Polish Addicts Anonymous. Bookings are essential and you can RSVP here.

Where: Powerhouse Museum, Ultimo
When: Thursday 19th May, 6-9pm

Xtend Barre At The Glenmore

There’s no better way to start your day than sweating it out while watching the sunrise from a rooftop vantage point. Right? Will throwing in breakfast sweeten the deal? We thought so. Xtend Barre is a hybrid workout, taking the best (and most challenging) parts of Pilates and ballet to strengthen, lengthen and chisel your body. While we can’t promise that you won’t be sore the next day, we can guarantee it’ll be in that ‘hurts so good’ kind of way. You can book your spot here.

Where: The Glenmore, The Rock
When: Wednesday 4th May

Stay Inside The Lines

Adult colouring books are definitely ‘a thing’ right now, with every bookstore displaying shelves of the intricate black and white designs. So why not re-visit a simpler time for yourself? Switch your phone to silent and immerse yourself in the calming world of colouring pencils and quiet libraries, where the most difficult decision is what colour makes the prettiest sky.

Where: Haymarket Library
When: Thursday 12th May, 12-1pm

Free Heartfulness Meditation In Potts Point

Meditation is taking the world by storm and for good reason. Said to improve quality of life, relieve stress, improve sleep, stimulate the immune system and increase concentration, we see no down sides. Each Wednesday, free lunchtime heartfulness meditations are held in Potts Point and no prior experience is necessary. There is no need to RSVP and all are welcome.

Where: Rex Centre, Kings Cross
When: Wednesdays, 12.30-1.30pm

Redfern Night Markets

Positive vibes come for free at the local Redfern Night Markets with DJs and live entertainment from 4.30pm as well as an open mic stage for any budding performers. Make sure you come hungry so you can take advantages of the many food stalls selling fan favourites like Hank’s Hotdogs, traditional gozleme and Sri Lankan street food.

Where: PCYC South Sydney Redfern 
When: Friday 6th May, 4.30-9.30pm

Tai Chi In Alexandria

You know those people you see in the park at 6am every morning, leisurely going through their Tai Chi? Well, you too could be that zen with weekly classes dedicated to mastering this ancient Chinese art. Preventing diseases and keeping you fit, Tai Chi is a gentle alternative to slugging it out in the gym. Plus, with the added bonuses of maintaining health and harmony in the mind and body as well as increased mobility and mental alertness, Tai Chi seems like a winner to us.

Where: Cliff Nobile Community Centre, Alexandria
When: Thursdays 11am-12pm

Casual Table Tennis In Ultimo

We use the term ‘casual’ loosely, since we absolutely recommend you bring along your competitive spirit and personal table tennis equipment for a high stakes tournament with your mates. This is a chance for some good old-fashioned fun and an opportunity to wipe the floor with your competitors. Can you tell I hate losing? Claiming a table is free and equipment hire is available, should you need it.

Where: Ultimo Community Centre
When: Wednesday – Friday, 10am – 8pm

Play Snooker In Redfern

Ditch the pub and head to this Redfern Community Centre for free use of their snooker tables four days per week. So if you’ve already mastered the game of pool and are too stingy to feed the coins into the table down at your local, this may be your opportunity to master another sport and become the ultimate cue-wielding master.

Where: Ron Williams Community Centre, Redfern
When: Tuesday – Friday, 9.30am – 3.30pm

Brett Whiteley: Other Places Exhibition

Extended until Sunday 8th May, Brett Whiteley’s exhibition ‘Other Places’ is a showcase of the travelling artist’s work in Paris. Dating back to 1989, the collection includes his early work for the first time alongside his latest experiences in the city, created with charcoal, photographs and paint.

Where: Brett Whiteley Studio, Surry Hills
When: Sunday 1st May, Friday 6th – Sunday 8th May, 10am – 4pm

The Grounds Fair

Heading into their second month, The Grounds Fair is here to stay. Putting their own spin on the regular Saturday #markethaul, The Fair’s new home is in The Grounds Storehouse near the Potting Shed. You’ll definitely be spoilt for choice with their curated collection of food, beverages and home wares that’ll keep you well stocked, at least until next week that is.

Where: The Grounds Storehouse, 2 Huntley Street, Alexandria
When: Every Saturday and Sunday, starting April 2nd

Pyrmont Photography Group

An opportunity to connect with like-minded people, the Pyrmont Photography Group is a collection of photography enthusiasts and all are welcome.  Explore the local area and capture your favourite hidden gems on film (or on screen) to share with the community and show off your DSLR prowess.

Where: Pyrmont Community Centre
When: Thursday 19th May, 7-9pm

Redfern – Waterloo: Tour Of Beauty

Hop on your bike and pedal along to the Redfern—Waterloo: Tour of Beauty this month. Alternatively, jump on the bus if you fancy taking in the sites without the hard work. The main event is the tent-to-end-all-tents constructed by Keg de Souza as part of the 20th Biennale of Sydney. Booking is essential and you can find all of the details here.

Where: 16 Vine Street, Redfern
When: Saturday 14th May, 1-5pm

Edible Green Walls Talk

Brighten up your balcony and save space with a vertical garden of the best kind. The edible kind. The options are practically endless with both permanent and moveable, pre-fabricated or build your own varieties available. This introductory workshop will guide you through the whole process from start to finish. You definitely don’t need to have a green thumb to master this one but booking is essential.

Where: Sydney Park Pavilion, Alexandria
When: Sunday 8th May, 2-3.30pm

Head On Photo Festival

Proudly inclusive non-profit organisation Head On Foundation is hosting their annual Head On Photo Festival this month holding exhibitions, workshops and live talks. Bridging the gap between Australian and international photography markets, Head On works with people from indigenous backgrounds, young and older people and disabled people, allowing their work to speak for itself.

Where: Various Locations
When: Tuesday 29th April – Sunday 29th May

Buddha’s Birthday Festival

To celebrate Buddha’s birthday, the 23rd annual Buddha’s Birthday Festival is moving in to Darling Harbour. There will be talks, live performances, meditation and food stalls to keep you busy throughout the weekend. A two-day festival dedicated to sharing the message of peace and eating all of the vegetarian food sounds like a pretty successful weekend to us.

Where: Tumbalong Park, Darling Harbour
When: Saturday 7th May – Sunday 8th May, 9am – 5pm

Want more? Search the site for more awesome thigs to do in Sydney.

Image credit: Pyrmont Festival

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