Spring in the Inner West
Spring is the perfect time to shake off the cobwebs and try something new – and the inner west’s line-up of unique festivals and events is sure to put you in a sunny mood. Grab your sunnies and get ready to be inspired.
1: Head to a rooftop
If you’ve spent winter bunkering down in basement bars, it’s time for a change of direction – literally. Enjoy a vitamin D fix with your tipple at one of the area’s bustling rooftop bars. If you’re yet to check out Erskineville’s UP rooftop, the latest space to be unveiled in The Imperial’s all-out revamp, Sunday is the time to do it. Jugs of cocktails, classic 80s remixes and a tantalising menu of Italian street food and pizza combine to create a merry scene. On King Street Newtown, Corridor and Webster’s are sunny day stalwarts, where you can kick on until long after the stars come out.
2: Cheer on the dapper riders
Hundreds of gentlefolk in tweed and bow ties will style their moustaches and kick-start their vintage motorcycles for the Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride on September 30. Riders will set off from Sydney Uni before putt-putting along King Street, towards the city, giving inner west locals a front-row seat to the spectacle. Raising money for the Movember Foundation, this unconventional spectacle showcases head-turning bikes and outfits aplenty. Grab your morning coffee on King Street, and get set to cheer on the dapper riders.
3: Explore a market
Stock up on seasonal produce at one of the area’s weekend markets, and treat yourself to an alfreso lunch while you’re there. The Carriageworks Farmers Market, held every Saturday morning, offers fresh NSW produce along with artisan bread, condiments and cheese. If you’re not shy of a crowd, there’s always something new to discover at the Grounds Markets in Alexandria, with an evolving lineup of stallholders each weekend. The Organic Food Markets in Marrickville, on every Sunday, is a slightly more laid-back affair, with a jumping castle and pony rides to keep the children happy.
4: Forage at a garage sale
Head out into the spring sunshine to hunt for a well-worn paperback or a pair of rollerblades at the annual Garage Sale Trail. Households, businesses and community organisations across the inner west are preparing to unearth the contents of their sheds and storage cupboards for the October 20 event, with a map at garagesaletrail.com.au listing the participating locations. Browsing through their wares, you may find a little piece of the 70s you never knew you needed, and get to know your neighbours, too.
5: Celebrate all things Newtown
The Newtown Festival returns for its 40th year on November 11, with a massive lineup of bands, activities, markets and food stalls to take over Camperdown Memorial Rest Park. The $5 entry fee goes to the Newtown Neighbourhood Centre, which supports people doing it tough in the inner west, and also runs programs to help maintain the area’s unique, inclusive character.
6: Toast the season
Raise a glass to the delights of spring at Pinot Palooza, the world’s biggest Pinot Noir festival. To be held at Carriageworks on October 7, Pinot Palooza will unite the best pinot producers from Australia, New Zealand and beyond, with a vermouth bar thrown in for good measure. The result is a rocking all-day celebration of wine, food and music. Tickets start from $65 and include unlimited tastings.
7: Be an early bird
Shake yourself out of winter hibernation mode by starting the day with a good coffee and delicious breakfast. Two Chaps, tucked away in an industrial corner of Marrickville, has turned a welding workshop into a haven of all things handmade and organic, with sticky chai, bread and pastries all crafted in-house. If deciding between pastries is a challenge, you’ll appreciate the hybrid options at Brewtown, which include the cruffin – a croissant-muffin blend, and their famous brewnuts – an extra-indulgent take on a cronut. Speaking of house-made pastries, also check out Saga Enmore, home of the highly Instagrammable Andy Bowdy mini cakes.
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