The Muddy Guide (Thurs 16 – Wed 22 Feb)
How are we doing? Whether you’re running for the hills, in the opposite direction to the kids, desperate for a night out, or scraping the bottom of the half-term barrel, there’s bound to be something in here to cheer you up. So up off the sofa, woolly hats on and out we go!
Last chance to see Mamma Mia, Theatre Royal, Plymouth, until Sat 25 Feb
Looking for a few feel-good hours with, or without the family? Download the soundtrack, reacquaint yourself with the music and then get yourself to Plymouth, for the final days of this touring musical. Ready? One, two, three: ‘Dancing Que-e-e-en, young and sw-e-e-e-t only sevent-e-e-e-en oh yeahhh!
Treasure Island Play in a Day, The Plough Arts Centre, Great Torrington, Fri 17 Feb
If you’re looking to drop the kids off for the day and lie horizontal for a few hours in a dark room, head for the Plough Arts Centre. A ‘Play in a Day’ will surely keep them entertained? Jim Hawkins has a dressing-up wardrobe, plenty of parts to give out and will take the smalls on an adventure, meeting Long John Silver and many other menacing pirates! You’re invited to a sharing performance later on, to play the part of the Proud Parents.
Suitable for ages 5-12, 10am, tickets £10. theploughartscentre.org.uk
Children’s Cupcake Decorating Class, The Flavel Arts Centre, Dartmouth, Thurs 16 Feb
When in doubt, bake. That’s the Mel and Sue mantra, anyway, God rest GBBO’s soggy bottomed soul. The talented cake decorator Nelly Konradi was inspired as a child herself by her mother’s showstopping decorations; now she’s sharing the frosted love in Dartmouth and sparing you your kitchen.
Dartmouth Beer Festival, Sat 18 Feb
Beer, cider, music and food. Do I really need to divulge any more? Oh, go on then. Expect to find barrels from the likes of Hunters Brewery, Devon Ales and Bridgetown Brewery and a laid back soundtrack of live jazz and blues throughout the day. Perfect winters day grown-up fun.
From 11am. Entry £10 includes a festival glass and 4 half-pint beer tokens. theflavel.org.uk
ID Fashion Spring Charity Fashion Show, Royal William Yard, Plymouth Sat 18 Feb
Pah to New York Fashion Week; If you’re in Plymouth over the weekend and fancy an alternative evening out with the girls, then get your Anna Wintour shades on and shimmy your way to the Frow at this fun-sounding charity do, showcasing the unique and wonderful creations of the Bulgarian design team behind Plymouth and Totnes boutiques ID Fashion. With wines from award-winning wine merchant Le Vignoble and an express beauty service from Hair and Make-up boutique Envy, the very best in the Royal William Yard are coming together. It’s all for a good cause too, as the event, in partnership with new charity Plymouth Ladies Charity Club raises money for young people in need in the area.
7-9pm. Tickets £20 inc. fizz and nibbles, Atrium In Mills Bakery royalwilliamyard.com
Half-day Canapés Course, Ashburton Cookery School, Sun 19 Feb
Been meaning to have friends over? Worried your cooking skills won’t cut it? I’ve got a genius idea. Set the date for Sunday evening, before the kids go back to school and send out the invites now; but first get yourself to Ashburton Cookery School and signed up to their awesome half-day canapés course. You’ll learn to create six show-stopping canapés and then get to take home your mini works of art, while the washing up is all done by someone else. Just don’t forget to pick up some prosecco on the way home.
9.30am – 1pm and 2pm – 5.30pm, £75. ashburtoncookeryschool.co.uk
Funhouse Comedy Club, Exeter Northcott Theatre, Mon 20 Feb
You might be verging on the hysterical come Monday night, but we all know laughter is a great release from all that pent-up fury and angst. This new comedy club night held in the theatre bar will feature some of the funniest stand up acts from the comedy circuit. This month’s confirmed acts include Russell Hicks, Edd Hedges and Compere Tom Glover.
Doors open 7pm for 8pm. Tickets £5 in advance, £7.50 on the door. exeternorthcott.co.uk
The Bike Scratch Night, Bikeshed Theatre, Exeter, Mon 20 Feb
Elsewhere in Exeter, you have the chance to get involved with the creatives who want to showcase their new ideas to you. Every month the Bikeshed Theatre hosts Scratch Nights, for companies to show the beginnings of an idea to an audience willing to give feedback and enjoy work at the earliest stages. Great, if you’ve always been curious about how a show gets made and at the end, you decide how much you want to pay on the way out. If you make it along, let me know what you thought? I’m always keen to hear!
Laugh Out Loud Festival, Exeter, Various Venues, Wed 22 Feb – Sun 5 March
Lolz aplenty in Exeter, is this the happiest city on earth right now?! A fortnight of fab comedy is on its way, with some great names doing a turn around various venues across town, including Britain’s favourite political comedy impersonator, Rory Bremner. Can’t wait to see his take on Trump. If only it were funny. But kicking things off on 22 Feb are Mark Thomas, at the Exeter Corn Exchange and the Exeter Cabaret Show, featuring multi-award winning comedy troupe Slightly Fat Features at the Exeter Phoenix. I’ll be telling you more about the festival in next weeks Muddy Guide, so standby.