Your quick guide to a wonderful weekend

You know what time it is and so do we: It’s the weekend and there’s plenty going on in Abu Dhabi.

Take your pick from international sport, live comedy, community fitness events, film screenings, returning festivals and so much more.

Go on, don’t waste your weekend.

Thursday 14th March 

Attend the opening ceremony for the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 and see all the athletes enter the arena for the athletic parade, the torch lighting the cauldron to symbolise the start of the games as well as performances from Avril Lavigne, Luis Fonsi and more. Can’t make it along? The event will be broadcast live on ESPN and Abu Dhabi TV. AED 100. Zayed Sports City Stadium, Saif Ghubash Street. 4pm. Visit: ticketmaster.ae 

Start the weekend with a giggle as the Yalla Laughs comedy show brings some of the best comedians in the country to the stage, including headliner Salman Qureshi, Rob McKenzie, Osman Rohail, Erik Thornquist, Jon Boulton, Ismail Warsama and Sahar Ali. Free. Up and Below, Courtyard by Marriott, Hamdan Street. 8pm. Visit: facebook.com/yallalaughs 

Head along the Corniche and visit the Mother of the Nation Festival where you can shop for items from local vendors, grab a bite to eat, watch live performances, explore the Special Olympics zone, let the kids burn off energy in play zones, check out the e-sports arena and more. AED 25 for adults, AED 20 for children aged six to 12 years old; free for children below six. Al Bahar, Corniche West. Thu-Sat 2pm-midnight. Visit: motn.ae

Friday 15th March 

Step inside the big top on Yas Island to enjoy Cirque Du Soleil BAZAAR, a new performance from the famous troupe that promises to be a dazzling visual display. From AED 295. Yas Island, near Yas Gateway Park. Fri 4.30pm and 8pm, Sat 2.30pm and 6pm. Visit: tixbox.com

Explore Qasr Al Watan to see inside the grounds of the Presidential Palace on the newly-launched tours where you can visit the gardens, visitors centre, exhibitions and a selection of public spaces. AED 60 for adults, AED 30 for kids aged four to 17. Corniche West. 10am-8pm. Visit: qasralwatan.ae

Take your fluffy friend for a day out and enjoy everything on offer at Pet Festival, from beauty contests to shops selling great gifts and treats for your pet. Plus, you can bring your pet along to the pet-friendly Yas Marina promenade all day on Friday for a pre-event lunch or post-event meal to make more of you day out together. Free, registration required. du Arena, Yas Island. 3pm-10pm. Visit: petfestival.ae 

Enjoy some fresh air and watch a family-friendly film after the sun sets as Christopher Robin shows on the big screen by the pool with appreaances from favourites Winnie the Pooh, Eeyore and Roo. Free, registration required. Saadiyat Beach Club, Saadiyat Island. 7pm-9pm. Visit: sbgolfclub.ae/Events/Open_Air_Cinema

Saturday 16th March 

The community is invited to join Run Unified, an outdoor running event held in support of Speical Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019. Participants can choose from 2.5km, 6km and 11km distances to lend some support to the athletes competing at the Games in the capital. From AED 57.75. Al Hudayriat Island. 6am-10am. Visit: gulfmultisport.com

Express Yourself is back as Blank Canvas Community, House of Nature and Inner Seed team up for a ladies-only event that features a collaborative art session, chakra yoga, meditation and more. AED 300. House of Nature, Villa 11, Marfa Al Bateen Street. 9am-1pm. Visit: facebook.com/events/390115914881262

See a cinematic classic as a fully restored version of Steven Spielberg’s E.T: The Extra-Terrestrial is shown on the big screen to capture the imagination of a new generation of children. Free, registration required. Manarat Al Saadiyat, Saadiyat Island. 4pm-6pm. Visit: cs-et-theextraterrestrial.splashthat.com

Have a great weekend and don’t forget to tag us in your photos at @adwuae on Twitter and Instagram and @abudhabiworld on Facebook – who knows, you might even be featured in the magazine!

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