NEW SOUTH WALES DIARY NOTES
A comprehensive guide to upcoming events in New South Wales.
Trundle ABBA Festival
Dancing queens around the country are dusting off their platform heels and lycra suits for the annual ABBA festival in the central western NSW town of Trundle. Organisers expect more than 6000 festival goers to converge on the town’s Berryman Oval to catch the entertainment, which is headlined by tribute band Bjorn Again and will also included performances by Rhonda Burchmore, Lara Mulcahy, Amitie, Kotthi Groove and dancers Alana Patience and Tristan Macmanus.
Bluesfest Byron Bay
Mar 29-Apr 2
From modest beginnings in 1990 Bluesfest Byron Bay has grown into Australia’s premier blues and roots music festival attracting more than 100,000 patrons during the Easter long weekend. Bluesfest showcases music from around the world on 120 hectares at Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, just north of Byron. Expect more than 200 performances across seven stages over five 12-hour days, as well as camping for up to 6000 people, licensed bars, more than 100 food and market stalls, undercover food courts, beer gardens, and children’s entertainment.
Riverboat Music Festival
Feb 16- 18
Set in a natural amphitheatre next the mighty Murray River, Riverboats Music Festival returns to the historic paddlesteamer port twin towns of Echuca and Moama with some of the most celebrated names in Australian music including Casey Chambers, Neil and Liam Finn and Josh Pyke. Riverboats also claims distinction as the only music festival in the country that offers sideshows on the paddlesteamer, Pride of the Murray, with intimate performances from Americana purveyors Tracy McNeil and the GoodLife, blues and soul aficionados the Teskey Brothers and Melbourne’s raucous swing collective, Jazz Party.
St Jerome’s Laneway Festival
The annual Laneway Festival kicks off its tour of venues around the country in Adelaide on February 2. Then it’s the turn of the event’s hometown of Melbourne on February 3, Sydney on February 4, Brisbane on February 10 and Fremantle on February 11. Laneway is all about showcasing new and revered seminal music from around the world so expect to hear some great sounds in quirky settings around the country.
Toyota Tamworth Country Music Festival
Cowboy hats and boots will be out in force as the 46th Toyota Country Music Festival rolls into Tamworth this year culminating in the Toyota Golden Guitar Awards ceremony on Saturday, January 27 at the Tamworth Regional Entertainment and Conference Centre. Superstars including Kasey Chambers, Beccy Cole, James Blundell, The Wolfe Brothers, Buddy Goode, Brothers3 and ventriloquist Darren Carr will all be returning to Tamworth with huge shows throughout the festival. Also returning to Tamworth this year is the ever-popular Coyote Ugly Bar, and the Country Turns Pink Concert is slated for Sunday, January 21. Aleyce Simmonds with her band, The Spurs, and special guests Finnian Johnson and Paul Carey will also rock the Tamworth Hotel during the festival.
Now- Feb 28
Anna and Simon Ainsworth’s benchmark nursery, retail store, florist and cafe, Eden Gardens, is brimming with creative energy this spring and summer with Eden Unearthed, an exhibition of 50 installations by local and international artists dotted throughout the complex. Works range from giant koi carp swimming through a bamboo forest and a projection study that delves into the life of native bees to a yarn-bombed garden setting and a handful of giant tethered balloons. The Ainsworths have encouraged participation from their charity partners so Hope Blooms is a community crafted project directed by Alison Thompson and supported by OPTUS and The Entombed Terracotta PRIDE Warriors is a collaboration by young people from Dr Trevor Weekes and Father Chris Riley’s Youth Off the Streets.
Christmas Lights Spectacular
Nov 4- Jan 26
The Hunter Valley Gardens will again sparkle and shimmer at night with the annual Christmas Lights Spectacular. The North Pole, the 12 days of Christmas, a giant present tree and the nativity will be among the festive-themed displays alongside landmarks from around the world including the Eiffel Tower, Dutch windmills, a Scottish castle and the Coliseum. Santa and his elves will be in residence at Santa’s workshop and there will be live entertainment, food stalls and a fun zone with jumping castles, a giant slide and arcade games.
National Cherry Festival
Don’t miss the 67th National Cherry Festival in the cherry capital of Australia, Young. Bringing thousands of visitors during December to celebrate these delicious stone fruit during peak harvest season, this iconic annual event showcases the crop that has been a part of the region for more than 150 years. Highlights include cherry pie eating contest, cherry pip spit, cherry festival street parade and market stalls.
Supercars Coates Hire Sydney 500 – Sydney Olympic Park
The streets of Sydney Olympic Park will ignite over three days as drivers push the limits at the nail biting grand finale at the Coates Hire Sydney 500. For more information, visit the link below.
Festival of the sun
Festival Of The Sun (FOTSUN) is a boutique music festival in Port Macquarie which combines live Australian and International bands, tasty markets and three days of camping in the sun next to the beach. Visit the website below for more information.
Lights of Christmas
St Mary’s Cathedral will again be the centrepiece of Sydney’s public Christmas celebrations, with Lights of Christmas presented by PAYCE returning to capture the imagination of audiences with a spectacular light and sound show.
Santa Arrives by Steam Train
Santa makes his way from the North Pole to Valley Heights Locomotive Depot Heritage Museum in the Blue Mountains this December. At 11am and 1.30pm on both days he will greet children from the back of the famous 19th century Sydney Steam Tram.