Tuesday, October 8
The Big Draw
The world's largest drawing festival, The Big Draw, will arrive in Shellharbour from Tuesday, October 8 to Saturday, October 12 for one week of creative fun.
Shellharbour City Council will be presenting the festival in partnership with Rumpus, a non-profit organisation that encourages play as a tool to unlock skills and build mentally healthy communities.
Come along to The Big Draw Open Day on Saturday, October 12 from 10am to 12pm, to join in multiple drawing stations with a range of highly skilled artists, for a celebration of drawing.
The day is suitable for all ages and drawing abilities, and all activities are free. The all-day workshops include The Natural Wonders of our World, In the Deep Blue, large scale mural drawing, ochre drawing, the Magic of Mandalas and Japanese Kawaii drawing and calligraphy.
On the day, there will also be a 'Bike and Draw' urban sketch fiesta from the Civic Centre to Harrison Park Lake, Character Design with acclaimed illustrator Craig Phillips, and The Giant Big Picture - a communal giant puzzle portrait.
Bookings are necessary. Click here.
School holiday fun
These school holidays, Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the classic children's book The Gruffalo by encouraging families to embark on the Gruffalo Spotters Trail.
Visitors of all ages can explore and search for The Gruffalo and other characters from the book using the Spotters Activity Trail and Augmented Reality App.
Guests will be able to immerse themselves in their 'deep dark woods' and find their favourite characters from the book using the free interactive App and the Spotters Activity book.
For tickets and further information about school holiday activities, click here.
Keep active these school holidays
Get the kids moving these school holidays with free kids fitness classes with Savvy.
They have a full timetable of kid-friendly classes to enjoy as part of Move Fest.
Come along to the Science Space at North Wollongong this October and you can explore the secret lives of mini-beasts.
They will explore bees, butterflies, stick insects and a whole lot more.
You will have the opportunity to get up close and personal with these magnificent creatures, while also learning about the plentiful plant life in the region.
Wollongong Art Gallery Spring School Holiday Program has a wide variety of two-hour workshops and full day workshops.
Workshops include drawing, painting, collages, ceramics and more.
They run from October 8-10 at Wollongong Art Gallery, corner Kembla and Burelli streets. Wollongong
For ages five to eight years and nine to 14 years.
Bookings are essential; for more information please click here.
Wednesday, October 9
Catch the hilarious line-up at the next Comedy Night at the UOW UniBar.
Come on down for a night of live stand-up comedy presented by Sydney's The Comedy Store and Yours & Owls.
This month's lineup includes Eve Ellenbogen, Becky Lucas, Aaron Gocs, Guy Montgomery, Joshua Ladgrove, Neal Portenza and Ron Josol.
The show kicks off at 8pm. Tickets here.
Thursday, October 10
Brick Party - Kids High Tea
Build, play and party - enjoy tonnes of fun building, playing games and enjoying some tasty high tea treats on The Deck at the Novotel,.
The event is on Thursday, October 10 at The Deck at the Novotel Wollongong from 10am.
Cost: Adults and children - $39 per person, 0-2 years - free.
Friday, October 11
Plenty of laughs
After a sold out national tour of Star Wogs in 2018, and two successful national tours in 2016 and 2017 of her critically acclaimed one-woman show: Effie the Virgin Bride, Mary Coustas' colourful comic creation Effie is back on stage with her new show Effie in Love Me Tinder.
Effie holds up a mirror to the complexities of finding love and keeping it, as only she can.
The show is at the IPAC, tickets here.
Damian Callinan and Paul Calleja are headed to Nowra with their show The Wine Bluffs. They'll answer those pressing questions, like what wine does go best with fairy bread, and why hasn't the 'Champagne Spider' caught on?
You'll know Damian from countless TV shows such as Skithouse and Spicks & Specks or his movies The Merger and Backyard Ashes. His partner-in-crime in this comedy wine masterclass is Paul Calleja, a comedy writer for The Project, Before the Game and other TV shows.
The show is on at Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre on Friday, October 11 at 8pm. Tickets here.
Peter Powers, the UK's most outrageous and naughty hyptonist will bring his show to the Fraternity Club on October 11.
Powers is one of the most successful hypnotists in the world.
Powers has starred in and presented 60 of his own television shows in five different countries and broadcast in more than 30 countries worldwide.
Tickets from the venue.
The Wollongong Writers Festival will unveil the details of its 2019 event in style.
The festival's 2019 Program Launch party will take place at Wollongong Art Gallery on Friday, October 11 from 6.30pm to 8pm.
The launch party will feature Sydney comedian Lizzy Hoo and Illawarra violinist Jane Aubourg.
At the launch, organisers will unveil the names of all the writers and artists appearing at the festival in November.
Although the full line-up will be revealed at the launch party, organisers have revealed three of the writers scheduled to appear, exclusively for the Mercury.
They are Charlotte Wood, who has been described as one of Australia's most original and provocative writers; Tony Birch, the author of four short story collections and three novels; and Gabbie Stroud, a writer and recovering teacher.
RSVP for the free launch party here.
The festival is on November 22-24.
Saturday, October 12
Relay for Life
Wollongong Relay For Life is a community event that raises vital funds for the Cancer Council's research, prevention, information and support services.
Join them for just a lap or for the full 12 hours, with live entertainment, food stalls, rides and activities while recognising and celebrating local cancer survivors, patients and their carers, and honouring and remembering loved ones lost.
This year's event will feature a new 12-hour format, from 9am-9pm.
The event is on at the Kerryn McCann Athletic Track, Beaton Park Leisure Centre, Gwynneville.
To donate, click here.
The Divine Miss Bette
Prepare for a rapturous performance from award-winning stage sensation Catherine Alcorn in her hilarious portrayal of Bette Midler in The Divine Miss Bette.
Alcorn and her live band will take you on a thrilling rollercoaster ride back to the Palace Theatre, New York 1973.
The show is on at the IMB Theatre, Illawarra Performing Arts Centre on Saturday, October 12.
The 2019 Illawarra Festival of Wood is on Saturday, October 12 and Sunday, October 13 at Bulli Showground.
Workshops, exhibitions and performances are all planned for the October festival.
This year's festival will include some of the world's best spoon carvers, knife makers, traditional tool makers, timber surfboard makers and wood-turners.
There will also be an opportunity to see some of the finest jewellery, floristry, sculpture, chainsaw carving, crafts and timber milling.
For more details, click here.
Aussie legend John Waters will be revisiting the illustrious Bob Dylan songbook on Saturday, October 12 at WIN Entertainment Centre.
Hear the songs that changed the world, performed by an artist whose world was changed by Dylan's music.
Tickets can be purchased here.
The Illawarra's Largest Clothes Swap is on again.
You can update your entire wardrobe for the cost of $10, all while helping the environment.
The event is on Saturday, October 12 at The Central, Innovation Campus
Time: Pre Drop Swappers 12pm. On the day Swappers from 1pm.
Cost: $10. More details here.
Sunday, October 13
Michael Jackson - The Legacy Tour is returning for an East Coast tour.
The show is produced and directed by its star performer, William Hall, and is internationally regarded as one of the best Michael Jackson tribute shows staged anywhere.
The Texan has been performing since he was three and is an accomplished dancer, choreographer and musician.
The show is on Sunday, October 13 at Anita's Theatre. Click here for more details.