WONDER Take-over: New You and Dry January Cambridge

As we pack away the Christmas decorations and Dry January rolls around, there’s a new way to party in the city.  “WONDER Take-over: New You and Dry January” is happening on Saturday 26 January at Cambridge University Centre on Granta Place, running from 2pm until late.  This sober social is an event for everyone and revolves around good feelings rather than alcohol.

Wonder Take-over Cambridge
Image credit: Charlie Snape

Created by friends Lisa Pollitt and Suzie Young, “WONDER Take-over” reflects a cultural shift and the fact that many people are now more mindful of their drinking habits or are avoiding alcohol for a multitude of reasons.  Lisa and Suzie are both busy working mothers.  They’re conscious of the choices they make about what goes into their bodies and whilst not teetotal, they both have periods of abstaining from alcohol.  “We’ve witnessed unhealthy relationships with alcohol and we want to model something different for our kids,” Lisa tells me.

Inspired by the endorphin high they experienced at a 5 Rhythms dance class, Lisa and Suzie wanted to get that feeling again on a night out but when they couldn’t find an event without alcohol, they decided to set one up themselves from scratch, starting with a day event last July and following up with “Winter WONDER: The Alternative Christmas Party” in December.

Wonder Take-over Cambridge
Image credit:  Charlie Snape

So what can you expect from “WONDER Take-over”?  A plethora of happenings designed to trigger your happy neurochemicals, raise your oxytocin levels and give you a natural buzz.  There’ll be plenty of non-alcoholic drinks and mocktails with a vegan menu served up by Meatless street food van.  Daytime workshops include Uplifting Joy Yoga, Kundalini Yoga and Gong Bath.  The evening kicks off with quick witted comedy from Cambridge Improv Factory, uplifting club classics, disco, house, funk and soul from DJs Paul Darking, MissChivers and Luna Love, immersive theatre sessions and dancefloor massages.

Wonder Take over Cambridge
Image credit:  Suzie Young

With an enthusiastic fan base of happy partygoers aged from 17 – 74, Lisa and Suzie have plans for more WONDER Festival events in Cambridge and possibly beyond.  For details of “WONDER Take-over: New You and Dry January” and to book tickets, check out the website.

www.wonderfestival.co.uk

This post is part of my “New in Cambridge” column in the January issue of Velvet Magazine.  Read more on http://www.velvetmag.co.uk

What’s on in Cambridge – January

Well, a new year has dawned and at the time of writing, things are pretty quiet in the city as life slowly resumes after the festive break.  Here’s the listing for January and I’ll add to it as I discover more events – please do get in touch if you are involved in something that could be included.

Snowdrops at Anglesey Abbey
Snowdrops at Anglesey Abbey

5th    10am – 1pm  Family Saturday – Crazy Cone Creations.  Use twigs, paint and wire to make crazy cone works of art.  Botanic Garden.  Free event.  http://www.botanic.cam.ac.uk

5th    2 – 4pm  Family First Saturday.  Fun activities and art making for all the family on the theme “Start with Art”.  Fitzwilliam Museum.  Free, drop in.  http://www.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk

6th    12 noon – 4pm  Studio Sunday.  Artist led workshop for families.  Kettle’s Yard.  Free, drop in.  http://www.kettlesyard.co.uk  Read more about Kettle’s Yard here

7th    7.30pm  A Georgian Christmas Wassail with Chela and Buska, the Cambridge Georgian choirs.  Jesus College Chapel.  Free entry.  Reserve seats at chelatickets@gmail.com

8th    Whistler & Nature exhibition opens, running until 17th March.  Fitzwilliam Museum.  http://www.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk

14th    7.45pm  Light to the World – Experiences of a Veterinary Opthalmologist.  Speaker:  Dr David Williams, Dept of Veterinary Medicine, University of Cambridge.  Part of the monthly Science meets Faith series.  Wesley Church, Christ’s Pieces.

16 – 19th    My Fair Lady.  Cambridge Operatic Society.  Cambridge Arts Theatre.  http://www.cambridgeartstheatre.com

17th   8pm  Tori Freestone Trio.  Cambridge Modern Jazz.  Hidden Rooms, Jesus Lane.  http://www.cambridgejazz.org

19th    2pm  The Big Sing 2019.  Faure Requiem.  Join The New Cambridge Singers and hundreds of other singers.  Rehearsal 2 – 4.30pm, performance 6pm.  Great St Mary’s Church.  http://www.newcambridgesingers.org.uk

19th    7.30pm  Sinfonia Cambridge.  Tchaikovsky, Humperdinck, Brahms.  West Road Concert Hall.  http://www.adcticketing.com

19th    8pm  War Requiem, Britten.  Choirs of Clare, Jesus, Selwyn and Trinity Colleges with choristers of Jesus and St Catherine’s College choirs and Cambridge University Chamber Choir.  King’s College Chapel.  Tickets from shop.kings.cam.ac.uk or on the door.

20th    12 noon – 4pm  Studio Sunday.  Artist led workshop for families.  Kettle’s Yard.  Free, drop in.  http://www.kettlesyard.co.uk  Read more about Kettle’s Yard here

21 – 27th    10am – 5pm  Cambridge Winter Exhibition.  Islamic art, culture, heritage and civilisation.  Cambridge Library, 3rd Floor, Lion Yard.

24th    7.30pm  Poetry at the Pub.  Six published and prize winning local poets read their work, open mic floor spots and books for sale.  The Blue Moon pub, Norfolk Street, CB1.  http://www.cb1poetry.org.uk

24th    7.30pm  An Evening with Sophie Hannah, presented by Literature Cambridge.  Stapleford Granary, CB22.   www.staplefordgranary.org.uk  Read more about Literature Cambridge here

25th    8pm  Burns Night Ceilidh in aid of Friends of Freetown.  Emmanuel URC Church, CB2.  Tickets on the door or from http://www.friendsoffreetown.org.uk/burnsnight

26th    2pm  WONDER New You sober social.  Yoga and Gong Bath, alcohol free drinks, vegan food, comedy and music.  Cambridge University Centre, Granta Place.  http://www.wonderfestival.co.uk

26th    2pm and 4pm  The Mouse Who Jumped.  A musical adventure for adults and children.  Family concert suitable for age 5+.  Come dressed as a Carnival Creature! Cambridge Philharmonic.  West Road Concert Hall.  http://www.cambridgephilharmonic.com

27th    10.30am – 4pm  Cambridge Vegan Market.  Vegan food and drinks, ethical clothing and charities plus ethically produced cosmetics.  The Guildhall, Market Square. http://www.veganmarkets.co.uk/cambridge  Read more about last year’s Vegan Market here

30th    6 – 9pm  Zoology Late: Winter Escape!  Arts and crafts, the science of animal migration and cocktails.  Museum of Zoology, Downing Street.  Age 18+.  Free, no need to book.  http://www.museum.zoo.cam.ac.uk/events

Paperwhites in my kitchen
Paperwhites in my kitchen