Food & wine
AMONG the key attractions at the State Library's Gusto! A Culinary History of Victoria exhibition are an old biscuit that was a World War I army ration and a copy of The English and Australian Cookery Book, published in 1864. The exhibition explores the history of viticulture, indigenous foods, sustainable food practices, fine dining and food rationing in Victoria, as well as telling the stories of some of the city's renowned food identities.
Friday, Saturday and Sunday 10am-5pm, State Library of Victoria, 328 Swanston Street, city, free, 8664 7000, slv.vic.gov.au
A SOUTHSIDE food institution, Prahran Market gears up for Christmas with a series of cooking demonstrations alongside the tantalising produce on sale in its stalls. Louise Harper presents the last instalment in the series, Christmas Canapes, in the Blanco Kitchen. A must for anyone looking to round out their finger food repertoire.
Saturday 10am-2pm, Prahran Market, 163 Commercial Road, South Yarra, free, prahranmarket.com.au
THE Supper Market at Abbotsford Convent lets you do your shopping as the sun goes down. It's a food market with fair trade products as well as fashion and craft stalls under the (hopefully) warm night sky. Those looking to grab a bite can choose from Himalayan, Indonesian, Mexican, Turkish and French cuisines, as well as wood-fired pizzas and fish and chips. Local musicians will play between 6.45pm and 8.45pm.
December 28, 6pm-10pm, Abbotsford Convent, 1 St Heliers Street, Abbotsford, free, abbotsfordconvent.com.au
LOCAL vegies and meat star at Casey Berwick Farmers' Market. Bridge Farm will have asparagus and plenty of leafy greens, while Killara Rise supplies the fish and lamb. Grand Ridge Brewery presents another sparkling craft beer, and kids' activities include a jumping castle, showbags, gelato and, perhaps most crucially, a visit from the man in red.
Saturday 8am-12.30pm, The Old Cheese Factory, 34 Homestead Road, Berwick, free, vicfarmersmarkets.org.au
THERE will be no shortage of garlic at the Slow Food Farmers' Market, along with a bumper selection of other new-season vegetables, including avocados and peas and spuds from Jones Potatoes. Stock up on Di's fruitcakes for Christmas, as well as free-range pork from The Gypsy Pig, stone fruit, local honey, cheese, wine and olive oil.
Today 8am-1pm, St Heliers Street, Abbotsford, $2 entry, vicfarmersmarkets.org.au
THE versatile QV Square, home to ice-skating in winter and the occasional concert, hosts the Sisters' Market this weekend. Well known northside for its regular appearance in the Brunswick and Northcote Town Halls, the Sisters' Market features fashion, homewares, jewellery and more, including bike accessories from Cycle Style and miniature terrarium worlds from Petite Green.
Saturday noon-7pm, QV Square, Level 2, Corner Lonsdale and Swanston streets, city, free, sistersmarket.com.au
THE Southside Handmade and Vintage Market often involves buying from the products' designers and makers. The 30-strong line-up of stallholders includes Run Wild Horses selling steam-punk jewellery and accessories for men and women, and hand-poured candles by Zen Moments, including some with a Christmas theme. Sweet-tooths should also look out for cookies from Gingerbread Corner.
Saturday 11am-4pm, St Kilda RSL, Level 1, 88 Acland Street, St Kilda, facebook.com/Southsidehandmade
CHECK off your last-minute gift list in one swoop at Yarraville Markets. Handmade jewellery, art, fashion, accessories, kids, beauty and health products fill the stalls, including clutch bags by Kathryn Samyue, craft packs from Rainy Days Joy, children's Tee Pees from Two Little Drakes and oil and watercolour paintings by Simone Browne. Kids' activities include face painting and a festive-themed craft corner.
Saturday 10am-5pm, Masonic Hall, Corner of Canterbury and Willis streets, Yarraville, free, yarravillemarkets.blogspot.com.au
Out of town
ONE of the founders of the Geelong Art Gallery, James Whitley Sayer, a notable figure of the Geelong community in the late 19th century, was a banker (manager of the London Chartered Bank in Malop Street) who was also a successful and accomplished artist. This retrospective exhibition brings together 40 works including paintings, drawings, book illustrations and an illuminated address. Exhibition runs until January 28.
Friday, Saturday and Sunday 10am-5pm, Geelong Gallery, 55 Little Malop Street, Geelong, free, 5229 3645, geelonggallery.org.au
WILDLIFE wranglers and educators The Rookeepers visit Victoria’s alpaca territory as they stop in at the historic mills in Creswick, the last operational coloured woollen spinning mill in Australia. The mobile zoo features some of the cutest and scariest animals that call Australia home, aiming to inform and help conserve native fauna populations.
Saturday 11am-4pm, The Creswick Woollen Mills, Railway Parade, Creswick, free, creswickwool.com
AT CHERRYHILL Orchards, visitors can select their own fruits from now until January. Seasonal cherries are now ready to be picked from the trees, and can be enjoyed right away in the Yarra Valley orchard or taken home for a Christmas Day fruit platter. Cherry juice and cherry ice-cream are also available.
Friday, Saturday and Sunday 9am-5pm, Cherryhill Orchards, 474 Queens Road, Wandin East, $5-$10, 1300 243 779, cherryhill.com.au
BLOCKBUSTER multiple award-winning stage show War Horse begins this weekend, with the State Theatre the crib of the colts until March 2013. The horse puppets created by South African Handspring Puppet Company are the inspiration for War Horse & the Breath of Life, an exhibition celebrating the art of puppetry from Punch and Judy to contemporary forms. The exhibition runs until March 17.
Today and tomorrow, 9am-late, Gallery 1, Arts Centre Melbourne, 100 St Kilda Road, city, free, artscentremelbourne.com.au
RUNNING alongside Dubliner David Monahan's photographic exhibition Leaving Dublin are a series of creative activities for children, allowing participants to make a bookmark decorated with designs from centuries-old Irish illuminated manuscripts, a glittering crown inspired by the Claddagh design, a traditional Irish symbol of friendship, love and loyalty, or to build a three-dimensional family tree.
Today and tomorrow 10am-5pm, Immigration Museum, 400 Flinders Street, city, free-$10, 13 11 02, museumvictoria.com.au/immigrationmuseum
STEVE Oedekerk, the man behind Jimmy Neutron, The Nutty Professor and Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls, presents his latest wacky endeavour Santa V The Snowman 3D this festive season. A light, cheeky take on Christmas, the film centres around a lonely snowman, jealous of Santa's power, who wages war on the North Pole in an attempt to take over the rights to the worldwide gift delivery franchise.
Today and tomorrow, 11am, IMAX Melbourne Museum, Rathdowne Street, Carlton, $12.50, 9663 5454, imaxmelbourne.com.au
SATURDAY is the last chance to see the work of the next generation of artists and designers at Fresh! 2012. The exhibition collects the work of tertiary graduates from around Victoria, handpicked by industry professionals, and spans ceramics, glass, jewellery, gold and silversmithing, fashion, textiles, industrial and furniture design and visual arts.
Saturday 10am-5pm, Craft, 31 Flinders Lane, city, free, 9650 7775, craftvic.org.au
I, ANIMAL is an interactive experience that incorporates theatre and multimedia to create a unique adults-only zoo encounter, held at night. Visitors use an iPod touch application as a guide through the zoo, allowing for unusual and emotive animal encounters. Created by contemporary performance ensemble The Border Project, I, Animal follows the ensemble's critically acclaimed performance I Am Not An Animal held at Adelaide Zoo this year.
Daily 6.30pm, Melbourne Zoo, Elliott Avenue, Parkville, $35-$39, 1300 966 784, zoo.org.au
HELD in the Old Melbourne Gaol's Magistrates' Court, The Trial of Ned Kelly is an interactive experience where visitors have the chance to play one of the 10 characters, or alternatively to watch as part of the public gallery as the courtroom drama unfolds. The Gaol's school holiday program also includes Such A Life, a 30-minute performance that takes the audience inside the life and legend of Ned Kelly through the eyes of his mother, Ellen Kelly (Saturdays 12.30pm, 2pm).
Saturday and Sunday, 11.45am, 12.45pm, 2.15pm, 3.15pm, 377 Russell Street, city, $20-$25, 8663 7228, oldmelbournegaol.com.au
THE Hothouse: Tall Poppies Grow Here program aims to develop the creative skills of 10 of Victoria's most promising filmmakers in years 10 to 12. Hothouse offers successful candidates the opportunity to gain hands-on experience, meet leading film professionals and use ACMI's production studios during April next year. Applications are not due until February 25, but the time to get started is now.
February 25, free, acmi.net.au/hothouse
LOCAL florist Elizabeth Ricci runs DIY Christmas table centrepiece workshops this weekend, the perfect last-minute class for the ambitious festive decorator. Ricci passes on the tips and tricks of professional florists, helping participants make colourful table art, guided by her passion for all things floral.
Saturday and Sunday 10am-noon, 2pm-4pm, Flower Temple, 18-22 Artemis Lane, QV, city, $95, 9663 3022, flowertemple.com.au
MELBOURNE's public square hosts a range of seasonally appropriate activities as part of Spirit of the Square, including performances of Christmas tunes from the Salvation Army Band and the opportunity for families to have their portraits taken (today and tomorrow, noon-4pm, free) in the surrounds of an installation incorporating 250 recycled plastic Christmas trees created by Melbourne-based urban art duo These Are The Projects We Do Together.
Friday, Saturday and Sunday, various locations, Federation Square, city, free, fedsquare.com