Manchester Museum is celebrating the first anniversary of its reopening by throwing a party for the people of the city.
Visitors queued for hours along Oxford Road when the Museum, which is part of The University of Manchester, reopened its doors on 18 February 2023, following the completion of a £15 million redevelopment.
Since then, more than 800,000 people have dropped by to explore the new galleries – and reacquaint themselves with familiar faces like Stan, the Tyrannosaurus rex – so Manchester Museum decided it was time to say thank you.
Party for the People takes place on Sunday 18 February, transforming the Museum’s iconic spaces into one big birthday party.
Visitors will be greeted by a red carpet on entrance, where they’ll be encouraged to channel their inner star and strike a pose for the photographer, before heading in to get involved in the party games.
There will be a giant game of pass the parcel in the Living Worlds gallery, amid the eye-catching natural history collections and musical dinosaur statues will take place under Stan’s watchful eye in the Fossils Gallery.
Prizes will be handed out for the best party hats, with craft workshops running throughout the day for people who need to make their own. Some of the Museum’s best-loved creatures, including the Japanese spider crab that greets every guest from its window on Oxford Road, will be getting into the spirit too by wearing party hats specially made for them by artist Lucy Burscough.
Visitors will also be able to play pin the tail on April the Tenontosaurus, enjoy performances from circus performers and a magician, and find out more about the Museum’s collections during a series of tours running throughout the day.
In the South Asian Gallery, there will be poetry workshops and performances, while in the Chinese Culture Gallery, families will be able to enjoy drop-in sessions for Wuqinxi, a type of Qigong that includes movements and exercises themed around five animals – tiger, bear, deer, monkey and bird.