The University of Glasgow’s ARC building is hosting a free festival

University bosses are launching a new community space on campus with a free two-week festival designed to make visitors say “wow”.

The newly opened University of Glasgow Center for Advanced Research, or ARC, will host the ARCadia Festival of Ideas next month.

Visitors can enjoy marching bands, a retro video arcade, comedy and drag shows, an outdoor ceilidh, art exhibits, a virtual reality celebration of Robert Burns And much more.

Jane Cowie, of the Annexe Healthy Living Centre, said, “Having something where the university welcomes the community is absolutely huge.

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“The combination of community, university and research is great.”

ARCadia, which runs from 16-30 September, aims to make ARC a significant contributor to everyday life in Glasgow’s West End.

The ground floor of the ARC, which will include a cafe and restaurant later this year, is open to the general public.

It will host over 65 free events for all ages during the festival, led by students and staff from the University of Glasgow and community partners.

These events include ARC tours during the Glasgow Doors Open weekend on September 17 and 18, and a family-oriented program the following weekend.

Local Marching Band, Brass, Aye? will perform in the ARC outdoor space on September 18.

The ARC will host events every night, including film screenings, comedy shows and live music for adult audiences.

On opening night, the atrium will transform into a movie theater for a screening of 90s classic Mars Attacks!, followed by a discussion with scientists working on Mars research.

Local community groups will contribute to the festival, including children’s storytelling sessions hosted by The Children’s Wood, hands-on booths by Partick Community Growing Project and The Annexe Healthy Living Centre.

The music collective Hen Hoose will organize a musical evening for the closing night.

ARC will also bring the voices of underserved or underrepresented communities to universities, with events involving the Maryhill Integration Network, local charities and the Africa in Motion film festival.

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There will also be events led by the LGBTQ+ and Gypsy, Traveller, Roma, Showmen and Boater communities.

The £116million ARC building, which stands on the site of the former Western Infirmary, is home to a multidisciplinary group of researchers tackling a range of global issues, from climate change to healthcare.

A wide range of research will be presented during the festival, including the university’s response to the pandemic, including a specially commissioned play and exhibition

ARCadia Festival Director Dr Zara Gladman said: “The ARC is a stunning new building, but it’s the people who will bring it to life.

“ARCadia is an invitation to the whole community to get involved, and this is reflected in our diverse program.

“At ARCadia, you can meet a cute robot, watch comedies and flirt, immerse yourself in the latest health research, explore virtual reality, and even dance in an outdoor ceilidh. »

To see the full ARCadia program and to book tickets, go to