Unsure on what to do this festive season? Here are the best events being held around the country this January.
WOODFORD FOLK FESTIVAL
Dec 27-Jan 1
At the largest gathering of artists and musicians in Australia enjoy music, dance, theatre, film, debates, art, workshops, circus performances, cabaret and a fireworks display.
AUSTRALIA DAY COCKROACH RACES
Watch cockroaches race in a dedicated stadium at this quirky annual event. Also, enjoy an eclectic array of food trucks and live music, as well as a street party where you can celebrate your roach’s victory.
GREAT AUSTRALIA DAY BEACH PARTY
One of the biggest Australia Day events in Queensland featuring live music, dance and circus performances; sand sculpture, beach games and face painting activities; market stalls and refreshments, and a fireworks
display at 8 pm.
Main Beach, Yeppoon, www.queensland.com
NEW SOUTH WALES EVENTS
Dec 31-Jan 1
Celebrating its 75th year, this full APRA Championship Rodeo on January 1 has a host of fun-filled events including local barrel race, poddy ride, bucking ponies, stallion chute out and poly saddle ride. The 75th reunion exhibition on December 31 will showcase old rodeo pictures, films and memorabilia plus speeches from notable rodeo personalities.
PARKES ELVIS FESTIVAL
To coincide with his birthday, celebrate the life and music of Elvis Presley in Parkes, NSW, with 150 events and national and international Elvis tribute artists.
This traditional family-friendly country show features a full equestrian program, including woodchopping events, free children’s entertainment, pig races, pavilion exhibits and the coveted Pambula Show Champion Oyster competition.
THE GREAT EASTERN FLY-IN
Check out the latest in aircraft, air displays, and take to the skies in this unique aviation event, which brings together pilots from all corners of the country.
Evans Head, www.greateasternflyin.com
TAMWORTH TOYOTA COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL
For 10 days Tamworth is transformed into an Australian country music Mecca for fans of the genre, with 2800 shows, 700 performers and 120 venues across the city.
LORNE PIER TO PUB
Cheer on thousands of swimmers as they push their bodies to the limit and race 1.2km from the Lorne Pier to Pub amid festivities celebrating the iconic annual event.
FESTIVAL OF SAILS
World-class sailing action is combined with fantastic free waterfront entertainment at the largest keelboat regatta in the southern hemisphere. Enjoy a carnival atmosphere, live music, children’s entertainment, waterski and flyboard shows, food trucks, market stalls and
a fireworks display.
KILCUNDA LOBSTER FESTIVAL
A family-friendly festival with live music, a monster raffle, animal nursery, face painting, market stalls, carnival rides and amusements, emergency service displays and, of course, lobster sales and lunches.
Kilcunda, Phillip Island, www.phillipislandpoint.com.au
HANGING ROCK CUP
The Kyneton & Hanging Rock Racing Club hosts its annual event at the iconic location near the setting of one of Australia’s most renowned films. This is a family-focused day featuring great horse racing with colourful bookies, free kids’ activities plus live music, a big screen as well as food stalls.
TASTE OF TASMANIA
Dec 28-Jan 3
Celebrate Tasmanian cuisine in all its glory from across the state on Hobart’s stunning waterfront. There will be more than 70 speciality stallholders from around the state, as well as sporting activities, art and craft, cooking classes, performances and children’s entertainment.
CYGNET FOLK FESTIVAL
The pubs, halls, cafes, parks and streets of
Cygnet will come alive with music as local and international folk artists take to the open-air stage.
HENLEY-ON-MASSE AUSTRALIA DAY
Try archery, whip cracking, ferret racing, sheaf tossing, egg throwing, the hurdy-gurdy, or enter a scarecrow competition at this quirky Australia Day celebration.
SOUTH AUSTRALIA EVENTS
STREAKY BAY FAMILY FISHING DAY
Free entry for this family-friendly event on the Streaky Bay Jetty. Cash prizes include $100 for the heaviest scale fish; $50 for the heaviest fish runner-up; $10 for the heaviest fish caught for each category and; $5 to participants who catch three different species of fish.
Streaky Bay, www.streakybay.com.au/
SOUNDS BY THE RIVER
Enjoy national and international acts on the banks of the Murray River. This year’s lineup includes Hunters and Collectors, James Reyne, The Living End, The Angels, Baby Animals, Killing Heidi and Boom Crash Opera.
CAPE JAFFA SEAFOOD AND WINE FESTIVAL
Promising seafood, local produce and wine against the backdrop of the Southern Ocean, enjoy live entertainment, sandcastle building and photo opportunities with the festival lobster mascot.
Cape Jaffa, www.southaustralia.com
Enjoy the action-packed annual World Championship Tuna Toss, browse stalls, taste the region’s best seafood and partake in a variety of activities and competitions.
Port Lincoln Foreshore, www.tunarama.net
WESTERN AUSTRALIA EVENTS
WESTERN AUSTRALIAN CIRCUS FESTIVAL
More than 90 artists will perform circus, comedy and cabaret shows. Featuring a children’s big top, workshops and stalls, Australia’s longest high wire walk plus a late-night cabaret.
MANDURAH CHRISTMAS LIGHTS
Dec 1-Jan 5
Experience the magic of Christmas as millions of colourful lights illuminate Mandurah’s luxury canal homes and reflect onto the water. Santas, snowmen, reindeer and sleds, dolphins, stars, snow globes and Christmas trees all sparkle with colour as carols are sung from balconies.
FRINGE WORLD FESTIVAL
From Jan 17
The third largest fringe festival in the world, this multi-arts festival will include more than 750 performances over a month across Perth. Expect comedy, circus, free and family entertainment, theatre, visual arts, music and musicals, dance and cabaret.
LANCELIN OCEAN CLASSIC
Get your ocean fix at Lancelin, 127km north of Perth, one of the best windsurfing destinations in the country for four days of action-packed water fun. See amateur and professionals compete in windsurfing, kite-surfing, stand up paddle, jet ski and ocean ski events.
NORTHERN TERRITORY EVENTS
THE FIELD OF LIGHT
A spectacular light installation by British artist Bruce Munro, who after eight years living in Australia designed the artwork to come to life under a starry sky. The installation is aptly named Tili Wiru Tjuta Nyakutjaku by the local community, which means ‘looking at lots of beautiful lights’ in local Pitjantjatjara.
OUTBACK BBQ DINNER & SHOW
Experience the ‘Spirit of the Outback’ at Earth Sanctuary’s award-winning dinner and show. See the spectacular sunset over the Eastern MacDonnell Ranges and be amazed at the canopy of stars as you taste a delicious home-cooked gourmet BBQ dinner.
Alice Springs, www.earth-sanctuary.com.au
BRUCE MUNRO: TROPICAL LIGHT
Until April 30
This 2.5km outdoor exhibition features eight spectacular illuminated sculptures by world-renowned artist, Bruce Munro. The exhibition is Bruce Munro’s first city-wide exhibition in the world with the collection reflecting the artist’s personal history of visiting Australia and NT.