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Ah January. The bleakest of months. Festive lights come down, leaving a grey hue that causes a yearly bout of seasonal blues across the country. The parties are over and there’s nothing to look forward to for weeks, except catching up with all that work you didn’t do because of December hangovers… Not if you live in Chester though! For the lucky folk of our fair city, there’s loads going on to keep you pepped up and positively buzzing. Here’s our top ten things to do in Chester this January.

New Year’s Day Bottomless Brunch

Peel yourself out of bed, wipe your eyes and ignore the banging drum kit that moved into your head over night. Or, simply don’t go to bed at all. There’s a lot of food and drinks to be consumed on New Year’s Day over at Barlounge Chester, in their mammoth hangover-curing bottomless brunch. We won’t judge if you start dry January on the 2nd.

When: January 1st from 10am to 2pm | Where: Barlounge Chester, Watergate Street | Cost: £30 per person for food and bottomless drinks for 90 minutes | Find out more: see the Facebook event

Improv Gym for Over 50s

Anything could happen at this playful drama workshop run by local practitioner, Liz Morris. Improvisation might sound a little nerve-wracking, but there’ll be no judging at this friendly group. It’s all about creativity, spontaneity and we imagine, a lot of laughs.

When: January 4th at 11.30am and then every Thursday until March 8th | Where: Storyhouse | Cost: £4 per session | Find out more: see Storyhouse’s Website

Words for Wellbeing

Start your year with a creative boost at this stress-reducing workshop by poetry practitioner, Lisa Rossetti. Getting a work-life balance can be tough, and we love the idea of using writing to relax and take some time for yourself. The workshop runs for six weeks, so it’s a great way to inject some creativity into 2018 right from the start.

When: January 4th at 12.30pm | Where: Storyhouse | Cost: £5 per session | Find out more: see the Facebook event

Latin Mania

With the Rio festival coming to Chester later in the year, it’s already time to get practicing those Latin dance moves. Learn to wiggle and move your feet like a Strictly finalist at Telford’s weekly salsa club. OK, so technically this is Cuban salsa, but you’re still sure to impress on carnival day. There are classes for all abilities and 2 for 1 cocktails to loosen you up if you’re feeling a little shy.

When: January 10th at 8pm followed by free social dancing from 9.30pm | Where: Telford’s Warehouse | Cost: £5 per class or £7 for two classes | Find out more: see Telford’s Warehouse Website

Chester Romans Seniors Rookie Recruitment

Trying random new things is what January is all about. If NFL nights on the sofa have got you thinking you quite fancy yourself as the next Tom Brady this is the event for you. They’re open to newcomers, and athletes of all shapes and sizes over the age of 18. (Tom Brady is a quarterback for the New England Patriots. And yes, I did have to google that).

When: January 14th at 11am | Where: The Cheshire County Sports Club | Find out more: see the Facebook event

Vegan Supper Club

Anyone looking to go meat-free for January will be in for a treat at this three-course meal offered by Urbano32’s award winning kitchen. It’s a bit of a bargain at £15, making it an accessible option if pennies are tight. Booking is essential.

When: January 17th from 7.30pm | Where: Urbano32, Bridge Street | Cost: £15 per person | Find out more: see Urbano32’s Website

Gin and Cocktail Run Tour, Chester Running Tours

Fulfil your new year’s resolution to get fit in 2018 AND drink gin at almost the same time. This relaxed tour takes in some of Chester’s most beautiful sights on its 5km route. We run so much faster when there’s a cocktail at the finish like (for anyone doing dry January, there’s a tempting variety of other themed tours on the website – ghost run, coffee run, deva challenge).

When: January 18th at 6.30pm | Where: Meet at Crowne Plaza Hotel, Trinity Street | Cost: £36 per person including tour, G&T and a cocktail | Find out more: see Chester Running Tours Website

How to Pose and Direct a Model, Chester Photographic Academy Evening

If you dabble in photography and want to make 2018 your year of going pro, an Academy Evening sounds like the perfect start. This practical workshop is run by Welshot and is as much a social evening as it is a training event. Taught by a professional photographer, you’ll develop skills in fashion or portraiture and have supper with other budding snappers.

When: January 18th from 6.30pm to 10pm | Where: Crowne Plaza Hotel, Trinity Street | Cost: £35 per person including supper | Find out more: see the Welshot Imaging Website

Burns Night

Eat award-winning haggis, drink whiskey and try to like the sound of bagpipes at this culinary treat to celebrate Scotland’s favourite poet. Booking is essential to enjoy a three-course meal that includes a wee dram of Macallan Gold to get you in the mood. Just make sure you save space for the gingerbread ice-cream.

When: January 25th from 6pm | Where: The Faulkner, Hoole | Cost: £35 per person | Find out more: see the Facebook event

Speakeasy Open Mic Night with John Hegley

Combine local talent with a whole hour set by John Hegley and you’ve got a spectacular night out for those partial to the spoken word. Expect performance poetry, comedy and storytelling. If you’d like to perform, the auditions are open until 15th January.

When: January 26th from 7pm to 10.30pm | Where: The Live Rooms | Cost: £12.50 per person | Find out more: see the Facebook event