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Top Free Things to See and Do Around Melbourne in September

Home > Melbourne > Community Events | Exhibitions | Family | Festivals | Free | Lists
by Lionel (subscribe)
Join me as I travel, play, eat, live and work in cities and places around the world.
Published August 30th 2017
Melbourne for Free in September
Enjoy FREE events and activities in Melbourne this month

melbourne
Photo courtesy of Visit Victoria Limited


Bid goodbye to the wintry chill of August as the weather warms up and the spring season encourages everyone to get outdoors. Adults and kids can enjoy a host of activities including colourful laneway installations; classical music performances; South Yarra lifestyle pop-up; art exhibitions; terrarium workshops; unique urban street walks; a zine fair; and Melbourne Fashion Week returns to town with exhibitions and live music. Whatever event or activity suits the family or your fancy, you'll find something for FREE in the world's most liveable city this month.

1 to 8 September - Melbourne Fashion Week Creative Collective Exhibition & Music Stage by i-D

Melbourne Fashion Week
Photo courtesy of City of Melbourne


The much anticipated annual fashion event returns to Melbourne this September. With City Square undergoing construction, Melbourne Fashion Week (MFW) returns with exciting free events at Melbourne Town Hall.

The MFW Creative Collective Exhibition is a revolving showcase of independent designers, artists and makers across design, jewellery, performance, sound, floristry, illustration and more. Curated by Virginia Dowzer and designed by Moth Design, it also highlights the innovation, diversity and inspiration of the creative disciplines within Melbourne's fashion scene. Visit the website for exhibition details.

In addition to the exhibition, the forecourt of Melbourne Town Hall is transformed by i-D into a live stage for performances and DJ sets. This merging of Melbourne's fashion and music scenes showcases the city's emerging musicians like Maya Hirasedo, Sui Zhen, HABITS, Jennifer Loveless, Brooke Powers, Laila Sakini, Chiara Kickdrum, and many more.
Visit the website for details on the soundtrack to Melbourne's fashion week experience.

Venue: Melbourne Town Hall
Address: 90-130 Swanston Street Melbourne VIC 3000

1 to 10 September - QV Melbourne Colour Me Beautiful

QV Melbourne Colour Me Beautiful
Photo courtesy of QV Melbourne


QV Melbourne is best known for its interactive outdoor events, festivals and activations in the QV Square and surrounding laneways including the Tropical Retreat and Neon Night Garden by Light Artist Carla O'Brien. This September, the popular retail precinct is home to Light / Play featuring Danish artist Tine Bech. She has exhibited in public spaces, galleries and at major festivals in Denmark, Israel, Brazil, Los Angeles and London.

Entitled "Colour Me Beautiful", this celebration of light and play is Tine's first works in Australia. It features five colourful runways leading to a vivid landscape of images and heralds the end of winter. You can look forward to colour, art, performance, music and food coming together at QV Melbourne this month.

Time: Available for participation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with other activities and event times varying.
Venue: QV Square, Level 2, QV Melbourne
Address: Corner Swanston and Lonsdale Streets, Melbourne 3000

2, 3, 9 & 10 September - SY Spring Festival by Yarra One

SY Spring Festival
Photo courtesy of Ecoworld International


The property developer of Yarra One Apartments, Ecoworld International, is hosting a pop-up park event this month. This weekend event showcases the culture, fashion, food and lifestyle in one of Melbourne's most prestigious locations and welcomes the spring season.

You can look forward to live entertainment, interactive art installations and games by Ellen Porteus and the Jacky Winter Group; designer pop-up market stalls by The Rose St Market; and dining options from Melbourne's top food trucks and coffee baristas like Coe & Coe, Nem N' Nem and St Gerry's. Visit the website for more information and free tickets

Time: 11am - 4pm
Venue: Yarra One
Address: 18 Claremont St, South Yarra VIC 3141

2 to 24 September - Holmesglen Institute Exhibition

library at the dock
Library at The Dock


Holmesglen Institute is one of the leading providers of TAFE courses in Victoria. It is working with the City of Melbourne to host two exhibitions at the Library by the Docks. Entitled "Shapemakers", this installation by Holmesglen's fashion students explore the interaction between technology and the traditional tactile experience in the design process and outcomes. More information about Shapemakers is available here.

Through "Savoire Faire", Holmesglen Institute captures the beauty and intricate world of fashion craftsmanship as part of the Melbourne Fashion Week Emerging Designer Runway. The installation involves multimedia footage, photographs, journals and decorative techniques to showcase the signature collections from four emerging Melbourne designers including Alexia Brizuela, Sophie Rodriquez, Jade Dong and Lorraine Reeves. Visit the website for more information on Savoire Faire.

Time: Mon to Fri 8am - 7pm, Sat 10am - 5pm, Sun 12pm - 5pm
Venue: Library at The Dock
Address: 107-117 Victoria Harbour Promenade, Docklands VIC 3008
Phone: 03 9658 9998

6 & 7 September - PLANT by Packwood Terrarium Workshop

PLANT by Packwood
Photo courtesy of PLANT by Packwood


Midtown Melbourne has been hosting a series of Winter Wellness Workshops for city workers including head, shoulder & neck massages, kinesiology sessions, beauty & skincare workshops and beer yoga. This month, you can look forward to Terrarium Making Courses by PLANT by Packwood. Experts Bayden Packwood and Charlotte Nicdao will help you create your very own mini-landscape. All the supplies required to construct your own terrarium is provided. You get your very own terrarium to keep. The venue is located next to Pad Thai Restaurant on Swanston Street. Visit the website to register your space.

Session Times: 12pm and 1pm each day
Venue: Midtown
Address: 246 Bourke Street, Melbourne 3000

8 September - Street Wisdom

Street Wisdom
Photo courtesy of Street Wisdom


Founded by David Pearl, Street Wisdom offers a guided mindfulness experience that opens participants' eyes to the magic of their everyday environment. Its events are hosted in various countries including UK, Poland, Sweden, Canada and Australia. You can join David for a three-hour guided urban walk where psychology, mindfulness and cognitive science are applied to help you use Melbourne's city streets to find fresh answers to important life and work questions. The meeting venue is outside Chocolate Buddha in Federation Square. Visit the website for details and registration.

Time: 9.45am - 1pm
Venue: Federation Square
Address: Corner of Swanston & Flinders Streets, Melbourne VIC 3000

11 September - England, My England

Melba Hall
Photo courtesy of The University of Melbourne


Australian tenor Leighton Triplow is joining with Alastair Cooper-Golec (tenor) and Erin Helyard (continuo) to present a recital of English Baroque music at Melba Hall. Leighton is currently a PhD candidate in musicology and vocal performance at the University of Melbourne. You can look forward to the secular cantata Bright Teraminta Crossed the Grove by Anthony Young, rarely heard Six Latin Motets by George Jeffreys, delightful tunes by Purcell and several Handelian arias. No reservation is required. Visit the website for more information.

Time: 7pm - 8pm, Doors open at 6.45pm
Venue: Melba Hall, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music
Address: University of Melbourne, Parkville VIC 3010

13 to 30 September - Jonathan Homsey's Fragments and Remnants

Jonathon Homsey, Fragments and Remnants, 2017, performance still. Photography by Giulia Morlando
Jonathon Homsey, Fragments and Remnants, 2017, performance still. Photography by Giulia Morlando / Photo courtesy of BLINDSIDE


Jonathan Homsey is an arts maker and manager exploring the interaction of street dance, visual art and social engagement. Born in Hong Kong and raised in US, he is known for his award winning theatrical contextual works such as "Together As One" as well as his interdisciplinary practice in galleries and public spaces in Melbourne, Sydney and Tokyo. Jonathan will be presenting "Fragments and Remnants" (FAR) at BLINDSIDE which explores how allegories and cultural information may be interpreted into a variety of stories and scenarios. Visit the website for more information.

Time: Tue to Sat 12pm - 6pm
Venue: BLINDSIDE
Address: Level 7, Room 14, Nicholas Building, 37 Swanston St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: 03 9650 0093

16 to 30 September - Leo Cussen's Golden Years Exhibition

Leo Cussen, Not titled, 2005, work on paper, 33 x 50 cm
Leo Cussen, Not titled, 2005, work on paper, 33 x 50 cm / Photo courtesy of Arts Project Australia


Arts Project Australia will be presenting "LEO CUSSEN: GOLDEN YEARS" this month. This full-time art studio and centre of excellence supports artists with intellectual disabilities. The exhibition explores Cussen's 20-year art career where he combined incredibly expressive pastel artworks with his love of film and popular culture especially from the Golden Age of Hollywood. Leo's works are held in numerous public and private collections including the National Gallery of Victoria and National Gallery of Australia. The exhibition will continue until 21 October 2017. Visit the website for more information.

Gallery Hours: Mon to Fri 9am - 5pm, Sat 10am - 5pm
Venue: Arts Project Australia
Address: 24 High Street, Northcote VIC 3070
Phone: 03 9482 4484

21 September - Lyrical Lunchtime in the Supreme Court Library

Supreme Court of Victoria
Supreme Court of Victoria


BottledSnail Productions is a not-for-profit organisation that provides Melbourne lawyers a creative outlet. It has teamed up with the Law Library of Victoria to present a lunchtime classical concert. You can relax in the beautiful surrounds of the Supreme Court Library while listening to music performed by members of Melbourne's legal profession. You can also take this opportunity to sign up for free scheduled tours of the Supreme Court. Visit the website for more information.

Time: 1.15pm - 2.15pm
Venue: Supreme Court of Victoria Library
Address: 210 William Street, Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: 03 9603 6282

23 & 24 September - Tonerpalooza 2

Tonerpalooza 2
Photo courtesy of State Library Victoria


Sticky Institute sell zines on behalf of zinemakers and have stocked over 12,000 zine titles. It has teamed up with State Library Victoria to present Tonerpalooza 2. This free zine fair serves up over a hundred zine stalls across two days. This is your chance to browse and purchase rare zines from celebrated independent makers. Accompanying the fair is a new exhibition entitled "Self-Made: Zines and Artist Books". It showcases limited-run artist books, science fiction fanzines from the 1940s, ground-breaking 1970s punk zines and cut-and-paste photocopy fanzines. Visit the website for more information.

Time: Sat 10am - 4pm, Sun 10am - 4pm
Venue: Red Rotunda, Cowen Gallery, State Library of Victoria
Address: 328 Swanston Street, Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: 03 8664 7000

27 to 30 September - Footy Festival

footy festival
Photo courtesy of AFL


The Footy Festival is back this year with more activities for the whole family at Yarra Park. You and your kids can look forward to the Toyota AFL Grand Final Live Site, a Kids Zone with NAB AFL Auskick Clinics and the biggest ever AFL inflatable obstacle course, the AFL Grand Final Eve Concert and some of Melbourne's best food trucks. You can also enjoy pre-match entertainment and Grand Final on the big screens in Yarra Park on Grand Final day. Visit the website for details of timings and events.

Venue: Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)
Address: 120 Brunton Avenue, Jolimont VIC 3002
Phone: 03 9643 1999
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Why? Loads of free things to do and see in Melbourne this September
Where: Various locations around Melbourne
Cost: Free
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