Townsville Eco-fiesta 2013

people and tents
One corner of the scene at the Eco-Fiesta

The weather was lovely and the people came to Queens Gardens in their thousands for Eco-Fiesta – all sorts of people from babies to octogenarians, new-agey folk to businessmen, solar power engineers, musicians, yoga practitioners, fairtraders, craftspeople, beekeepers and permacultivators … yes, I made up a couple of words there, but I’m sure you know what I mean. It was great to see such a broad spectrum of people coming together. Great, too, to see that everyone manning the stalls was genuinely happy talking to visitors – but I guess that’s what happens when you believe in what you are doing, selling or promoting.

Palm Creek Folk Festival, which is held over the coming (Queen’s Birthday) long weekend, had a stall there but my spies tell me that they have now sold out – for the first time ever, you won’t be able to buy a ticket at the venue on the day – and their website confirms it. Oops! I missed out!

In three hours or so I managed to check out most of the stalls, buy some lemongrass cordial from the Herb Society stall (lovely!) and lunch, and listen to a couple of groups on stage and Alex Salvador’s drum circle on the lawn. I came home with a bundle of flyers, business cards, posters and fridge magnets which I will scan and line up to appear here gradually in the next week or two while I will be away from my desk, so as not to overwhelm anyone here with the abundance of information.

Festival season in Townsville

Winter in Townsville is the season of festivals and outdoor events, since the weather is (pretty reliably) clear and sunny.

In the next few weeks there are at least three festivals which will attract a particular demographic, one which I must be part of since it is one I have identified from the inside. It can be characterised as arty-greenie-leftie-alternative and its members turn up in various combinations at Landcare working bees, as Reef HQ Aquarium volunteers, as members or audience members of Aquapella (listen to them on YouTube), at the photography club or pottery classes, at yoga and tai chi open days, at the book club, handing out how-to-vote cards for the Greens, chatting with wine-glass in hand at gallery openings, and so on. It’s a big enough demographic that they/we don’t really know each other but small enough that they/we often recognise one another by sight. I am confident that these three events will to be of interest to them/us.

EcoFiesta, 2 & 3 June 2012, 11am – 4pm

This free community event in Queens Gardens, North Ward, includes the Townsville Environmental Awards, a Welcoming Babies Ceremony, live entertainment and environmentally sustainable workshops filled with ideas to assist the community in becoming more environmentally conscious and sustainable. The event itself is carbon neutral. As I said a while ago, EcoFiesta was hippie-alternative in its first years but has drifted slightly towards commercialisation even as the mainstream has begun to embrace the whole greenie thing, and the festival is now almost mainstream.

Performers on the One Degree stage include Tim Griffin, Laughin Gear, Ranger Dan, Carinda Christie, Lonesome Trio and the headline artists for this exciting event are FourPlay and The Rosie Burgess Trio. Website

Townsville Literary Festival, 4 – 10 June

Workshops for teachers and writers, with local and out-of-town presenters, and other events for the broader public. Programme (pdf)

Palm Creek Folk Festival, 8 – 11 June

The Palm Creek Folk Festival is an annual event, held in June each year in the grounds of the Mountain View Lake Eco Park, 40km south of Townsville. The event takes place over four days and three nights, involving more than 100 performers and events with music concerts, dances, workshops, acoustic jams, youth festival, art and craft workshops, and special events. The Festival features the cream of local performers and selected national special guests. Website

All these events and many more were listed in the Townsville Arts e-bulletin, a free monthly listing sponsored by the city council and compiled by Sandra James and Teneale Grigg of the Community Information Centre Townsville, Inc. Visit their site to sign up for the newsletter if you want to be kept informed.