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4 fun family times things to do in Inverness this weekend

By Margaret Chrystall

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Choose from free Eastgate Centre activities, another chance to grow basil for your pizza, the release of Barbie and a round-up of other summer kids' movies ...

1 ​The Eastgate Centre free fun activities in the coming week on Tuesday and Wednesday from 11am-3pm are on Tuesday, July 25 ​Rokzkool Musical​ has musical adventures and other sound learnings!​ ​Are you ready to have the chance to play musical instruments and join the Rokzkool band? And on Wednesday, July 26, ​FitKIDZ Get Creative ​means youngsters can get butterfly and animal temporary tattoos​ as well as trying lots of fun-filled arts and crafts, from colouring, making and creating. All sessions last approximately 30 minutes and are operated on a first-come basis.


Grow basil for your pizza.
Grow basil for your pizza.

2 Get a pizza the planting action ...

For July and August, Dobbies has a Little Seedlings holiday club where youngsters can learn all about pizza planting. The second session of the summer is on Saturday, July 22 at 10.30am. Take a closer look at what herbs and microgreens you can grow to put on your pizza. There will be the chance to plant basil seeds. The workshop will cover: the herbs typically found on pizzas; herb facts and history; different types of microgreens and their benefits; how to grow plants and microgreens at home; basil planting. Children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Advance booking is required – the garden centre says please book early to avoid disappointment.


​Barbie​ with Margot Robbie as Barbie.​Picture​: ​Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. © 2023 PA Media
​Barbie​ with Margot Robbie as Barbie.​Picture​: ​Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. © 2023 PA Media

3 Come on, Barbie, let's go party

Out on Friday, July 21, Barbie (12A) stars Margot Robbie as a Barbie girl in a Barbie world when she assumes the lead role in writer-director Greta Gerwig’s satire of modern gender roles and corporate greed based on the enduringly popular fashion dolls. But now BArbie has to face the real world ... The script was co-written by Gerwig’s film-maker partner, Noah Baumbach. Life in Barbie Land is perfect for Barbie (Robbie) and her dreamily-chiselled Ken (Ryan Gosling) until the plucky blonde suffers an existential crisis that includes a chance to ditch her high heels for – gasp – sensible flat-soled footwear. Expelled from her pink-saturated utopia for being less than perfect, Barbie sets off for the human world to see if true happiness lies there instead. Ken gatecrashes her odyssey on four wheels with his trusty pair of yellow roller skates. The duo discover that the bright lights of California conceal dark desires, including the insensitive chief executive of Mattel (Will Ferrell), horrified to come face to face with his toy company’s prized asset.



The Little Mermaid with Halle Bailey as Ariel. Picture: Disney Enterprises, Inc./Giles Keyte. © 2023 PA Media
The Little Mermaid with Halle Bailey as Ariel. Picture: Disney Enterprises, Inc./Giles Keyte. © 2023 PA Media

4 Screen time for younger kids

If Barbie is a bit grown-up for your littlest ones, don't forget that there are lots of summer films out there – including Vue Cinema's Mini Mornings every Saturday and Sunday morning from 10am, plus every day in the school holidays. This weekend (Saturday and Sunday, July 22 and 23) is Super Mario Bros (PG) with both adult and child tickets from only £2.49 per ticket. Also still on there this week every day is Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken (PG) and Elemental (PG). The Little Mermaid (PG) – critics judged it as "an assured live-action makeover buoyed by ... exuberant characters, a lip-smacking villainess and the irresistible Menken-Ashman songbook". But for that one and Spider-man: Across The Spider-verse (PG) – there aren't screenings every day, so check times beforehand. And during August and September, there will be loads of classic films for youngsters heading to Inverness, including the original Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory (U), Toy Story (U), The Jungle Book (U) from 1967, from 1938 Snow White And The Seven Dwarves (U), Walt Disney's Peter Pan (U) from 1953 to more recent offerings such as Paddington (U) from 2014 and Space Jam (U) from 1997.

And at Cromarty Cinema, on Sunday at 4pm you can catch an animated film for slightly older youngsters, Suzume (PG). It's the subtitled, apocalyptic story of a teenager who ends up bringing destruction across Japan, just by opening a door ...



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