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Open East Festival

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by Sandra Lawson (subscribe)
To paraphrase Dorothy: 'There is no place like London.' I hope I can convince you of that here. Also check out my blog at and my theatre reviews at
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Open East Festival at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
Is it really almost a year since London hosted the 2012 Olympic Games? Does our deprecatory English sense of humour, use of understatement and lack of self-belief really allow us to accept that it went off beautifully and that we even managed to win a decent tally of medals? If you need to remind yourself of July 2012 and of how we managed to create an Olympic park that was ready on time, you could visit the north part of the park and celebrate the first anniversary of the London Olympics.

Open East Festival
Open East Festival (Image courtesy of

The Open East Festival over the weekend of 27/28 July will be packed with world music and performers, food, theatre and art and design and is suitable for all ages. Even if the sun refuses to shine, some of the musicians most definitely will, especially acts from sunnier climes such as Toots and the Maytals from Jamaica (I defy you not to tap your feet to Monkey Man),

Malian Amadou and Mariam,

Colombian music courtesy of Frente Cumbiero and Quantic, and Jupiter & Okwess International from the Congo.

Pandemonium Drummers will be reprising their role from last July. Here is a video of their rehearsal just to remind you of how impressive a spectacle Danny Boyle laid on for us:

Xtreme Action will be displaying what can be done on their BMX bikes, House of Fairy Tales and Discover Children's Story Centre will perform especially for the little ones, although all the entertainment laid on over the weekend will be family friendly.

And if the Festival makes you hungry and thirsty, the Real Food Festival and the Ten Mile Beer Festival will be on hand to satisfy your needs.

Open East Festival
Real Food Festival (Image courtesy of
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Why? To have a weekend of fun, music, entertainment and food in memory of the 2012 Olympics
When: 27 and 28 July from 1.30 - 10pm
Where: Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
Cost: 9.50 per day, plus concessions
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