Families will get the chance to meet Alice, the Hatter and the Dormouse at Oxford’s historic Covered Market as part of the curiouser and curiouser Alice’s Day this weekend.
Alice’s Day, which is organised by The Story Museum and takes place tomorrow (7/7), is an annual celebration to mark the first telling, in Oxford on 4 July 1862, of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
The day will feature live theatre, music, circus performances, lectures, crafting and more at museums and cultural venues across Oxford.
As part of the celebrations, Alice herself will be exploring the Covered Market to hunt for her pink flamingos – and she’ll be asking families for help.
Thirteen flamingos will be hidden in independent retailers across Oxford city centre as part of Alice’s Adventure Trail, including eight within the Covered Market.
If families are able to help Alice find the pink flamingos, they will be rewarded with a prize at The Story Museum.
The Covered Market will also host the Hatter and the Dormouse, who will hold a mad tea party in the market’s central courtyard.
And Covered Market traders will join in the fun by dressing their windows and shops with Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland-themed decorations.
To take part in Alice’s Adventure Trail, families will need to collect their trail sheet from The Story Museum between 11am and 3pm.
To join the trail with Alice herself, meet her at The Story Museum between 11am and 11.30am, or between 3pm and 3.30pm.
The Covered Market, which pre-dates Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and was first opened in the 1774, features more than 50 traders selling food, gifts, shoes, fashion, flowers and jewellery, and provides a unique showcase for the very best in local crafts, food and drink.
For more information about Alice’s Day and Alice’s Adventure Trail, visit The Story Museum's website.
Sandie Griffith, Secretary of the Covered Market Traders Association, said: “The Covered Market plays an important part in the retail offer of the city and the traders are delighted to have the opportunity to be part of this festival. Many shops will be decorated and have donated prizes.”
David Gibb, from The Story Museum, said: “We’re delighted to be working with the Covered Market traders for the third year running to help make Alice’s Day a festival for all the family to remember.
“The market’s independent retailers are a huge part of the city’s cultural offer, and Alice’s Day is a fantastic opportunity to shine a light on some of the brilliant shops and businesses that make Oxford such a popular destination for tourists and locals alike.”
Councillor Mary Clarkson, Executive Board Member for Culture and City Centre, said: “Alice’s Day is one of the highlights of Oxford’s fantastic cultural offer, and I’m delighted that Covered Market traders will again play a key part in this year’s festivities.
“All year round Covered Market hosts a fantastic and eclectic mix of curiouser and curiouser food, gifts, shoes, fashion, flowers and jewellery, so it’s great that Alice, the Hatter and the Dormouse can join in the fun.”