Out with a bang
Spend alfresco evenings at the Redoubt Fortress Military Museum of Sussex, Eastbourne. Every Wednesday and Friday from 8pm to 10pm until September, 1812 Nights will feature military bands playing Tchaikovsky, culminating in a fireworks display. Other events include displays by living history societies, open-air dances and barbecues. Information: 01323 410300; www.eastbournemuseums.co.uk.
Welfare State International's Lantern Festival is a highlight of the Cumbrian year. Join lantern-making workshops in preparation for the grand procession on September 20 and follow the procession to its finale with new music, fire sculpture and spectacle in Ford Park. From July 21-26, the company will run the Rites of Passage Summer School, investigating the philosophy and practicality of creating ceremonies that are specific to place, people and occasion, while young people can join the Longline Summer School (August 6- 8) to devise music leading to the Longline Landscape Festival, a three-year, multimedia project exploring the ecology and mythology of Morecambe Bay. This will culminate in a carnivalesque festival in summer 2005. Information: 01229 581127; www.welfare-state.org.
Art of summer
Children can attend a puppet show set in Elizabethan times (July 24), or make their own water puppets (July 28) inspired by Canaletto's Venice scenes and the mermaids and fish on the majolica plates in the Wallace Collection in London. Adult painters (including beginners) may like to learn from artist Christopher Stevens, and from paintings in the collection, some of the techniques of the Impressionists. Information: 020 7563 9500.