6 November

Grrl Fest 2015

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Inspired by similar Grrl Fests overseas, sideshow performer and self-confessed loud laugher Amy Broomstick launched the Melbourne bash in 2013, a riot of lady talent (or, more specifically, women-identifying talent, because trans-women are equally celebrated). Since its inception, the event’s grown exponentially, celebrating femme musos, cabaret and spoken word.

Grrl Fest makes it clear that everyone’s welcome (including dudes), but only women-identifying talent is showcased. For anyone pondering the necessity for such an event, just check out the women to men ratio on the forthcoming festival line-ups. Not to drop anyone in it, but when Broomstick contacted a major summer festival and encouraged them to include some more female artists, the response was that said festival was “interested in new ideas”. What the? Since when has the inclusion of ladies on a bill been a new idea? We reel.

Grrl Fest also provides a safe festival space and none of us need a reminder that it’s not entirely risk free out there, especially if you’re not a fella.

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24 October

Melbourne is getting another escape room, and it’s also a bar

TRAPT

You may have noticed that here at Time Out, we’re fully embracing the weird new trend of escape rooms. Really, what’s not to love? Getting trapped in dark rooms, racing against time, avoiding crazed murderers – leisure time well spent, we say.

Melbourne has six escape rooms now; some created by escape room fanatics from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Flemington, some with multiple themed rooms to choose from (we’re talking vampires, secret gardens and CSI labs). None of them (except Strike’s Escapism) offer post-escape beverages.

Until now. TRAPT Bar and Escape Rooms is just weeks away from opening. It makes so much sense: you can meet your team-mates for a pre-game pep-talk, then soothe the frayed nerves (or bolster wounded pride) after an hour of high-stakes puzzle-solving.

Stay tuned for our test-drive (and taste) of TRAPT.

TRAPT Bar and Escape RoomsRead more

1 October

Pet tracker initiative smashes crowdfunding records

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Many of us know the heartbreak of losing a pet and Sebastian Langton is on a global mission to prevent it. Last year, after losing his best mate, Rango (the cat), Sebastian decided that he had to do something to stop this happening.

“If nobody else had found a way of tracking cats and dogs, then I was certainly going to,” he said.

Teaming up with his friend Damien Cantelo, he’s developed the smallest and lightest pet GPS tracker in the world. The working prototype, Pod Live, is waterproof with an interchangeable battery and is designed to attach onto your pet’s collar. Pod works by syncing with your phone and through the app you can locate your pet anywhere and any time. The Pod app also has some other pretty nifty features like being able to set a virtual perimetre for your pet, and being alerted when they wander further.

After securing some of the largest pet retailers in the world to stock Pod, Sebastian and Damien have now turned to crowdfunding to get their product up and running.… Read more

19 September

MURDER: 1920s Gangster Rules is a real-life murder mystery game

MURDER 1920s Gangster Rules

Pause that Miss Marple re-run, people: it’s time to step into the real world. Secret Squirrel, who also run immersive, interactive film night Underground Cinema, have just launched a real-life murder mystery night that’s less Colonel Mustard, more Gatsby-era pearls and prohibition. You’re invited to come and unravel the plot.

Gangland kingpins, slimy henchmen, gamblers, blackmailers: the Black Pearl’s Attic will be transformed into a dark Chicago speakeasy, filled with professional actors bringing the story to life. Tensions in the criminal underworld are high, and someone has just been murdered. The police are closing in, but it’s up to those in the club to pin down the murderer.

Your role? Dress up, for a start. When you book a ticket, you’ll be assigned a special character, along with secret information that you’ll need to play the game. During the game, you’re free to bribe, blackmail and sleuth your way to the truth: unless of course, you’re the one with something to hide.… Read more

16 September

Someone’s invented stain-proof clothing

Fabricor Workwear Chef Jacket  - Chilli SauceGood news, chefs. Adrian Li has invented the kitchen equivalent to Post-it Notes: the stain resistant chef’s jacket. “The nanotechnology application that we apply modifies the fabric at a molecular level by permanently attaching hydrophobic ‘whiskers’ to individual fibers which elevate liquids, causing them to bead up and turn into spheres that roll off the fabric surface,” says Li, on his Kickstarter page. Sounds like magical science to us. Li also says most stains come out with a little cold water, and the material also breathes. No word on whether it’s stink-proof, though.… Read more