Magnificent Mannifest

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IT was probably the best weekend’s trade Manx welly retailers have ever had, as thousands kitted themselves out to brave the mud of Glen Lough farm for the magic of Mannifest 2012.

But despite the squelchy conditions, feedback for the island’s biggest festival has been overwhelmingly positive.

WAR PAINT: Teenagers get into the full festival spirit. PHOTO: Mike Wade MW120803 (83).

WAR PAINT: Teenagers get into the full festival spirit. PHOTO: Mike Wade MW120803 (83).

It all began on Friday, the campsite filled up early and the three-day event got off to a solid start with standout acts like Chicago’s hip hop and funk collective Hypnotic Brass Ensemble got heads nodding and hips swaying.

There were six music stages, with the Chai Wallahs tent throwing up quality act after quality act, and the dance music tent – Manntronica – proved to be one of the most popular attractions of the weekend, particularly on Saturday night, when Radio One’s Jordan Suckley played to a packed and pumped audience.

By day, kids enjoyed the foam bath, zorbing, samba drumming, circus workshops, wood sculpting, and cheerfully dragging their parents around the arena’s ankle-deep mud.

Back on stage, headliners Reef played with energy and conviction, though this writer’s set of the weekend goes to Lazy Habits, who closed the Chai Wallahs stage on Sunday evening with an electric performance of tight and jazzy hip-hop, finishing with an unexpected but infectious seven-way percussion battle, before frontman MC Lazy signed off with a final salute to the crowd: ‘Thank you Mannifest, I knew the Isle of Man could throw a party.’

Attention moved to the festival-closing fire show, as dancing, juggling and acrobatics wowed a crowd already thinking about tickets for Mannifest 2013.

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