THE Lakes International Comic Art Festival takes over the market town of Kendal, and again promises a full-on weekend of comic fun from tomorrow (Friday) to Sunday (October 13-15). Featuring live comic drawing, films, exhibitions, comic trails, workshops, performance, masterclasses, a free family zone and independent publishers. The festival's programme is bursting with opportunities to get up close and personal with some of the leading comic artists and writers from Japan, the USA, Canada, Australia, Finland, as well as European comic creators. Events are being held at a variety of venues including Ruskins Bar, Brewery Art Centre, Comics Clock Tower Chamber and Kendal Library, plus there's The Windows on Comic Art Trail which is at the heart of the festival because it involves businesses and artists displaying artwork in the windows.

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NERDS are back with a brand new tour - You Can't Polish A Nerd. This show, a festival of the Spoken Nerd, sees experiments guy Steve Mould, geek songstress Helen Arney and stand-up mathematician Matt Parker, literally creating an experimental comedy show. Together, they are buffing up a veritable Periodic Table of new science, songs and spreadsheets that will tickle your ribs and light your Bunsen burner. Playing at The Dukes' the Rake, Lancaster, on Saturday (October 14, 8pm).

Box office 01524-598500

Tickets £17.50; concessions £14

THE last wish of a dying friend provides the theme for this funny and moving, semi-autobiographical story from Tangram Theatre, called Team Viking. James' best friend, Tom, was told he only had three months to live and his last wish was to be given a full Viking burial, just like the one they used to re-enact as children. This remarkable, hilarious and heart-lifting story sees James actually giving Tom the send-off he so wanted - put out to sea in a flaming boat. Team Viking is performed by James Rowland and can be seen on Saturday (October 14, 7.30pm) at Arnside Educational Institute.

Box office 01524-762254

Tickets: Adults £8; children £4.

SOCIAL and domestic historian and patron of Heron Corn Mill, Ruth Goodman, is due to give a talk (tonight) in the mill's barn at 7.30pm. We know what life was like for Victoria and Albert, but what was it like for a commoner? How did it feel to cook with coal and wash with tea leaves? Drink beer for breakfast and clean your teeth with cuttlefish? Ruth not only works with museums, theatre, television and educational establishments, she has presented and consulted on several TV series, including BBCs Victorian Farm, Tudor Monastery Farm, Edwardian & Wartime Farm, as well as Victorian Pharmacy. Ruth lives with her family in Buckinghamshire.

Tickets 015395-64271.

Tickets £18.

THE Antiquarian Booksellers Association hosts its second annual Grasmere Book Fair this year. Featuring antiquarian and second hand books, maps, prints and ephemera. It will run in tandem with bookish themed events at the Wordsworth Trust. The fair takes place tomorrow (October 13, noon-6pm) and Saturday (October 14, 10.30am-5pm), at Grasmere Village Hall. Refreshments will be available.

For further information call 020-7421-4681.

SATURDAY and Sunday (October 14 & 15) is Apple Weekend at Beetham Nurseries, near Milnthorpe. The nurseries’ traditional annual apple weekend where the nation’s favourite fruits are celebrated is again offering apple and fruit tasting (taste the flavour of the fruit before buying the tree!) Also apple expert Andy Gilchrist will be available to answer any technical and practical queries (Saturday only). Plus there’s a special fruity menu that will grab your taste buds in the Garden Café. All in all a delicious event for fruit lovers.

Free entry.