Huge fringe benefits come with festival’s new dates
  • Friday 16 December 2011

The 2012 Caloundra Music Festival has been moved to the new Queen’s Birthday long weekend in September – from the 28th to 30th – opening the way for a spectacular lead-up of other entertainment.

A whole festival “fringe” week can now begin from Saturday 22 September, which marks the beginning of the spring school holidays. Free entertainment including the Village, presented by Festuri, the popular Music on Kings, the Bulcock Busking Festival, band competitions, lunchtime concerts and a beach-side carnival will all contribute in a diverse musical build-up to the main festival event.

“This is a bold initiative to put the region’s best foot forward to the widest possible audience,” Sunshine Coast Council Division 2 councillor and Deputy Mayor Tim Dwyer said.

“A comprehensive consultation was undertaken with key stakeholders to determine the new dates, a decision that was necessitated by the State Government realigning the school holidays and the creation of the Queen’s Birthday weekend,” he said.

Ticketed events will run between 28-30 September taking advantage of the newly created long weekend, festival director Richie Eyles said.

“We made a decision we think is in the best interests of the future of the festival,” he said.

“The holiday period allows us to attract our key family demographic from interstate. The fact that the place is already busy will simply provide additional opportunities for local businesses and community groups.

“When all available accommodation fills the festival can explore temporary camping options which will provide much needed revenue for schools, sporting clubs and community groups – much as they do at other big festivals like Tamworth Country Music Festival.”

Sunshine Coast Destination representative Bill Darby said the festival should be seen as a destination marketing initiative.

“Visitors will see Caloundra in the best light possible and this will bring them back again and again,” he said.

“This festival is the springboard Caloundra needs to become a nationally recognised destination in its own right.”

Economic Development and Entrepreneurship portfolio councillor, Lew Brennan, said the week-long “fringe” festival could increase accommodation bookings across the whole Coast as well as Caloundra.

“This opens up the options for visitors to enjoy a Coast-wide holiday as well as taking in what has become one of the best musical festivals in the country – it also strengthens our local music industry,” he said.

Tickets will go on sale around April. More information at http://www.caloundramusicfestival.com