This article appears in today's Leicester Mercury:
Plan for two-day festival unveiled
by Dan Martin
Organised by Leicester City Council, it will be an amalgamation of celebrations already held in the city, as well as a number of new events.
City mayor Sir Peter Soulsby said: "For the first time, we are bringing together a lot of separate events which will effectively double the size of the celebrations across the city.
"If it proves a success, as I am sure it will, we will look to make it a bigger and even better event last year."
The idea was conceived last year as part of a city council review of festival funding.
This year, the budget has been cut from £366,500 to £308,500 and will fall to £288,500 in 2014.
The events making up the City Festival will be mostly free and the mayor hopes it will become an annual event to bolster Leicester's bid to become UK City of Culture in 2017.
Humberstone Gate West and Gallowtree Gate will host the eighth annual Sports Fest on the Sunday, with coaching sessions on offer in basketball, football and boxing.
There will also be live music and dance, including Chinese dragon dancing.
On the Sunday, from 11am to 4pm many city streets will be shut so cyclists can take part in the annual Sky Ride.
On the same day the market will host Our Leicester Day, a celebration of the city's community groups, clubs and societies.
On Bank Holiday Monday, the city's history will be celebrated with the Old Town Festival at Magazine Square, Newark Houses Museum and Leicester Castle. There will be medieval re-enactments, the opening up of historic buildings and a food fair.
Leicester Mela, traditionally held in July, has been moved to the Monday and will take place around the Clock Tower with a Bollywood and Bhangra celebration of South Asian culture.
Town Hall Square will host the Journeys Festival over two days. Involving art, drama, music and poetry from refugees, it will tour the East Midlands.
Finally Orton Square, outside Curve theatre , will host End of Pier Delights on Sunday and Monday. It will be a seaside celebration for youngsters.