Entertainment

GREAT BARRIER REEF FESTIVAL

GREAT BARRIER REEF FESTIVAL

GREAT BARRIER REEF FESTIVAL

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Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! A Dancing Queen Revival

Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! A Dancing Queen Revival

Look into these Angeleyes, because you ain’t seen nothin’ yet; The Pub is set to turn into a Summer Night City of synth, high energy, and soprano when SOS – A Tribute to the Songs of ABBA rolls into the coastal town.

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Eat Street, Sideshow Amusements, Fireworks, And More At Whitsunday Christian College

Eat Street, Sideshow Amusements, Fireworks, And More At Whitsunday Christian College

Whitsunday Christian College, a local Prep – Year 12 school is inviting the community along to celebrate its 25th anniversary in late August with ‘A Night Under the Stars’ event.

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Movie Review Lee Kernaghan: Boy From The Bush

Movie Review Lee Kernaghan: Boy From The Bush

It’s been billed as a part-concert film and part-road movie, showcasing “stunning local landscapes, remarkable people and amazing stories”. Lee Kernaghan: Boy From The Bush, comes from the minds behind “Slim and I”, the famed documentary-style story on Slim Dusty’s life.

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Closing With a Bang

August 12, 2022

The week-long regatta will come to a close next Thursday evening with live entertainment, food vans and a fantastic firework display at the Festival Village.

Happy yet weary sailors will raise a glass to the week’s activities and the winners of each division will be officially announced, as well as the overall winners.

Two special awards will also be handed out – a prize going to the best local boat and the Boss Hog award which is given each year to a sailor that has gone out of his or her way for others and best embodies the true character of the event.

This year for the first time, there will be a lucky draw with over $3000 dollars’ worth of marine electronics up for grabs thanks to Twenty 16 Communications.

Bring the family along to the celebrations, enjoy some hot food from one of the food vans and listen to some reggae beats from ‘The Feels’ who kick-off at 6.30pm.

The fireworks will illuminate the sky at 8pm, a worthy finale to a huge week of on-water action and on-land festivity.

Airlie Beach Race week is not just for sailors, this is also a community event and everyone is invited to come down to the Festival Village, enjoy the atmosphere and get an insight into the friendship and camaraderie that exemplifies our vibrant local boating culture.

When: Thursday, August 18

What: Airlie Beach Race week closing ceremony

Time: From 6.30pm

Fireworks: 8pm

Soak up the vibrant atmosphere of the Festival Village

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Get Set For Lay Day Activities

August 12, 2022

There’s no need to get the lay day blues when there’s plenty to explore in the Airlie Beach area – here are our top picks for a fun filled day!

• Set sail on a skippered yacht charter – put your feet up and let the skilled hosts of popular local charter boat ‘Wings’ guide you around to the best snorkel spots, Whitehaven Beach or perhaps for a sunset cruise.

• A day of comfort and style awaits aboard the stately MV Nancy Wake, Sealink’s new Whitsunday Island Day Cruise which includes a guided tour of the islands, delicious lunch and Whitehaven Beach.

• Eat, drink and be merry in Airlie Beach. Enjoy bistro classics and sea views on the balcony at the Whitsunday Sailing Club, delicious Italian cuisine at La Tabella, tasty pub classics and free live music at the Airlie Beach Hotel, succulent seafood at Fish D’Vine and finger-licking chicken wings at Mika.

• Treat yourself to a luxurious night on-land at the stunning Toscana, Italian inspired self-catered apartments perched majestically on the hillside with aerial sea views, just minutes’ walk from the heart of Airlie Beach.

• Addicted to nautical gadgets? Head to Twenty 16 Communications and browse their diverse range of items to enhance your boating experience. From chart plotters to thermal imaging, mobile phone boosters and marine radios – they’ve got you covered!

• Discover the road less travelled with Ocean Roads who have recently launched a Creek to Cape tour which encompasses Cedar Creek Falls and Cape Gloucester. Explore nature and enjoy a relaxed day travelling in comfort and style on their brand-new Iveco bus.

• Need a ride? Heart of the Reef Shuttles meets every flight arriving and departing from Whitsunday Coast Airport.

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Ocean Beats

August 12, 2022

Renowned for its vibrant social scene as well as on-water action, the Airlie Beach Race Week is a party-goers paradise, and the evening atmosphere at the Festival Village promises to get the crowd moving to the beat, serenaded by a host of live performers.

From the sweet reggae beats of ‘The Feels’ to the dramatic drum sets of the Mason Rack Band and the acoustic wizardry of Matt Angell, the live music boasts both huge variety and quality entertainment.

Overlooking the Coral Sea, the Festival Village offers 180-degree views of the ocean, an ideal place to watch the sunset over Pioneer Bay.

Delicious Treats

Inside the sailing club you will find the bistro open every day, offering pub classics like burgers, pizzas, steaks, pasta and of course seafood. Dine inside the spacious restaurant area or head outside to the large al fresco balcony with views of the sea.

Throughout Race Week, the Festival Village will host a variety of food vans who will operate under the stars. Both community members and sailors are invited to gather and soak up the atmosphere, enjoying the festivities while sampling the array of delicious treats from the food vans while moving to the beats of the live music band.

Dine on the lawn and watch the boats bob on the water nearby while mingling with nautical folk who love sharing a good time and a good story.

What: Live Music every night aside from Lay Day

When: 6.30pm onwards (from 4.30pm on Sunday)

See full event schedule on page 18

Jazz vocalist Emma Pask

The Mason Rack Band

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Goggles On, Sails Up!

August 12, 2022

Race Week veteran Jason Ruckert, known to everyone (including his daughter) as “Goggles”, is celebrating almost 20 years competing in the event alongside his three dedicated crew members.

Earlier this week, they drove his seven metre trailable boat, Mister Magoo, up the coast from Brisbane and will be competing in trailable division this year.

Previously the team have competed with some of the biggest fleets including the sports boats and performance divisions.

Since 2016, Mister Magoo has won their division four times with the crew adept at understanding both the vessel and each other, having sailed together for over 13 years.

Based in Manly near Brisbane, Goggles first came to Airlie Beach in 2004 when he competed for the National Sports Boats title, taking home second place.

From that moment, the Whitsundays became an annual event for him and his sailing buddies who brought the sailing boat ‘Gone Troppo’ here in 2006 and then continued competing with Mister Magoo in future years.

“We love the mixture of passage races round the islands,” said Goggles.

“That, and you guys have a massive beer tent! We love the social side and meeting all the North Queensland guys!”

A ‘wharfy’ by trade and turning 50 this year, Goggles has enjoyed a lifelong passion for the sport having initially taken it up with his dad who was a skiff sailor.

Together they sailed at Skiff Clubs around the country, and it wasn’t long before they purchased a trailer sailor.

Spending most of the year competing in regattas in Southeast Queensland, the Airlie Beach Race Week is their favourite “big event” and one they look forward to each year.

Make sure you look out for them over the week and wish them luck in sailing home with a winner again this year.

Look out for the bright orange sail of Mister Magoo

Goggles and his crew navigating the course

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Young Champ Sets Sail

August 12, 2022

Earning his stripes sailing Skiffs from a young age and graduating to Lasers more recently, Joshua King has just been nominated for Queensland Youth Sailor of the Year having achieved a series of successes at both state championships and local regattas over the past two years.

At just 13-years-old, Josh is proving he has the mettle and determination to compete and often pop out of the fleet to dominate a race, showing his worth against other sailors of all ages.

“It’s the competition side of it I love,” explained Josh.

“I am quite competitive myself and the fact that everything with sailing is really close all the time is really cool.

“Anyone can win and it’s super competitive – the difference between first and second can be only a point or less which makes it a really exciting sport.”

Contending in the Laser division of the Queensland State Championships in his first regatta in Bowen last year, Josh came 11th place.

His following competition in Yeppoon later that year, however, was Queensland Youth State Championships and, incredibly he sailed away with second place.

Gaining confidence with every race, Josh went on to compete in as many regional regattas as possible throughout Queensland and consistently achieved top three placements.

Earlier this year at the North Queensland Championships, which were held on his home turf at the Whitsunday Sailing Club, Josh won the entire event with a day to spare.

Bringing this success to the 2022 Queensland State Championships in Brisbane, Josh took out the competition, coming in first place, just one point ahead of the nearest competitor.

“It was light winds so not as many races in as we hoped, but it was really good to get a win at that event, I definitely wasn’t expecting it!” he said.

Josh has recently returned from Youth Sail Queensland in Brisbane with the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron where, despite being in the lead going into the last race, narrowly missed out on a win, coming in second place.

Celebrating achievements and learning from losses, Josh is focusing on fine-tuning his skills, participating in training clinics and preparing himself for the next Youth Championships.

Discovering a love for sailing from a young age when he would jump aboard his dad’s trimaran, you will find Josh part of the crew on M32 competing in this high performance catamaran in the multi hull racing division at this year’s Race Week.

Josh King was recently nominated for Queensland Youth Sailor of the Year

Josh King in action sailing his Laser

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A Tropical Long Lunch

August 12, 2022

One of the most popular social events of Airlie Beach Race Week is back this year and organisers are pleased to bring a Pacific Island extravaganza to the Tropical Island themed Long Lunch and Wine Tasting.

Held on Sunday, August 14, the lunch is set to be one of the region’s best culinary events of the year and features five courses which are each paired with matching wines.

Enjoy a lime and lemon sorbet to cleanse the palette, followed by marinated baby octopus, beef carpaccio, baked coral trout and then finished with a vanilla bean panna cotta.  

All dishes are prepared utilising the best local produce, showcasing the various cuisines from the islands, including tropical fruits, seafoods and other delicacies.

Each course has been specially designed by the head chef and inspired by her Fijian culture.

This fragrant festival of food is set to the backdrop of the Coral Sea with the elegant long table setting located on the Sailing Club balcony which overlooks Pioneer Bay and the racecourse with the opportunity to see colourful sails glide by on the horizon.

The afternoon kicks off at noon and guests are welcome to stay on into the evening festivities with Emma Pask and the All Stars playing on the Festival Village lawn directly below the balcony from 4.30pm.

What: Tropical Island Long Table Lunch

Where: The balcony at Whitsunday Sailing Club

Time: 12pm until late

Price: $115

Book: Whitsunday Tickets

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Airlie Celebrates 34 Years Of Race Week

August 12, 2022

Yachts of every shape, size and style have been sailing into the bustling nautical town of Airlie Beach for the past few weeks, arriving from all over the country to fill marinas and moorings, dotting almost every inch of the horizon with masts and beaming white hulls.

The Whitsundays is now hosting 180 boats with 1,400 crew and a total of 2,500 race week attendees when you include the boat’s support teams and this year is set to be the biggest yet.

Dating back to 1988, Airlie Beach Race Week was started by Don Algie, owner of the Australian franchise of Hogs Breath.

Beginning as the ‘Hog’s Breath Cruising Classic’, the event was part of the annual Whitsunday Fun Race until its popularity saw it branch out on its own to become the regatta we know and love today.

By 2000 the Airlie Beach Race Week was regularly attracting 70 entries annually and a record-breaking 132 boats competed in the 2003 regatta.

In 2020 the Airlie Beach Race Week was one of the only regattas in the country to host an event despite the pandemic limiting numbers.

This year, organisers say they are looking forward to the biggest year in the event’s history.

Separate column – photo 2

Message from the Race Director

Welcome to the 34th Airlie Beach Race Week Festival of Sailing at Whitsunday Sailing Club.  After the highs and lows of the past couple of years, it is great to finally see a record fleet here in Airlie Beach.  The large fleet has thrown the organising committee some challenges, particularly securing sufficient berthing for the fleet, but once again our team has done a wonderful job in fitting everyone in.

Once again, the on-water team will be working hard to ensure 6 days of fantastic racing around the waters and islands of the Whitsundays.  A fleet in excess of 180 boats makes for exciting sailing on the water and a great experience on shore. The fleet has been split into 15 divisions (another record) to ensure that similar boats are in direct competition.

As in recent years the regatta will start with the mass start race out to Double Cones Island.  This has become a regatta tradition, and with the large fleet will provide a wonderful spectacle for competitors, spectators and media alike. The spectacle of 180 boats, mostly under spinnaker, heading off together is really something to be experienced.

On shore, the festival village has again moved back to its traditional location on the lawns of the club, with the marquee, entertainment and plenty of food vans and bars.  Upstairs, the club’s bistro and bar will be open, with the balcony overlooking the village.  The Long Lunch on Sunday will also be held on the balcony, providing guests with an opportunity to look out over the racing area.

We look forward to seeing you all on the water and at the social events ashore.

Ross Chisholm

Regatta Chairman and Race Director

Airlie Beach Race Week attracts record number of yachties to biggest year yet!

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RACE WEEK ON NOW 34th Airlie Beach Race Week Sets Sail Today

August 12, 2022

A record number of yachts from as far afield as Western Australia and Tasmania have sailed into the Whitsundays in recent weeks to compete in the 34th annual Airlie Beach Race Week.

Following on from a challenging few years with state borders closing just days before the 2021 event, last year saw 102 entries cancelling within a week.

Back better than ever before, organisers are now excited to see the regatta reinstated to its former glory in 2022, with an impressive 180 boats competing across 15 divisions.

“It’s been wonderful to get so many boats this year and we are thrilled to see the event return to this size at last,” said Robin Ross, General Manager of Whitsunday Sailing Club.

“To put an event of this scale on for the town and for Queensland is pretty awesome!”

Whitsunday Sailing Club General Manager Robin Ross, Race Director Ross Chisholm and Sailing Club Commadore Heather Sutton aboard Airlie Beach Race Week’s start boat

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Event Guide

August 11, 2022

Friday 12 August

The Mackay Disability Expo 2022

Friday, 9:00am to 12:00pm

Back bigger and better than last year, the expo will offer an opportunity for people with a disability to find out about the latest products, services, aids and equipment. It will also be an opportunity for service providers to build networks with other providers, organisations and agencies in the region. For more information, visit the Facebook event.

The Big Shed, Mackay Showgrounds

Artist in Residence: Leonie Wood – Made by You!

Friday, 10:00am to 12:00pm

If you want to learn to draw, then this beginners’ life drawing session is just for you. Renowned local artist Leonie Wood will help you discover techniques and develop your skills in this supportive learning environment. Art supplies provided for use during class. This event is for adults aged 18 and above. Bookings required.

Gordon White Library

Friday SUN.sets

Every Friday Evening From 6pm

Knock off drinks, lakeside dinner, good friends, and LIVE MUSIC.

Wake House Australia

Saturday 13 August

Picnic In The Park

Saturday, 10:30am to 1:00pm

A social event for deaf and hard of hearing children of all ages, their parents, siblings, grandparents and caregivers. BYO picnic and blanket. Activities include playground, beach, soccer, French cricket, handball, Auslan bingo and scavenger hunt. Parents or caregivers must stay with children, this is not a supervised event.

Iluka Park, Binnington Esplanade, Mackay

ART TALK: Australian Feminist Art

Saturday, 3:00pm

Presented by Feminist Art Historian, Louise Mayhew, the lecture charts the history of feminism from when it started rippling throughout Australia as Women’s Art Movements in the mid-1970s to when feminist ethics and aesthetics spread into political screenprinting, community art, cyberfeminism and an emerging generation of intersectional feminist artists. Fascinating artists and projects such as Vivienne Binns, VNS Matrix, The CoUNTess and Barbara Cleveland are explored.

Artspace Mackay

Underwater Hockey Come and Try Day

Saturday, 11:00am to 3:00pm

Come and try underwater hockey. Members of the Townsville Underwater Hockey Club are coming down to show everyone the ropes and run some games.

Mackay Aquatic Recreation Complex

Sunday 14 August

Hostplus Cup Women In League Round – Mackay Cutters v Burleigh Bears

Sunday, 10:15am

Join the Cutters on Sunday August 14 for Women in League Round, celebrating all women in sport! Come down to BB Print Stadium to witness all the Mackay talent! Hastings Deering Colts kick off: 10:45AM. Hostplus Cup kick off: 1:00PM.

BB Print Stadium

Konvoy 4 Kids Mackay 2022

Sunday, 10:30am to 3:00pm

Join in on the 2022 Konvoy 4 Kids Mackay and help fundraise much needed funds for QLD children and families in need. All funds raised go to Variety QLD, the children's charity. Check out the website for ways you can get involved: https://k4kmackay.wixsite.com/konvoy. Join the family fun day at Mackay Showgrounds!

Mackay Showgrounds

Sunday Live Music – The Feels

Sunday, 2:00pm to 5:00pm

Music every Sunday from 2pm - 5pm. Head down to the Seabreeze Hotel this Sunday for some fresh tunes, delicious food, and ice-cold brews.

Seabreeze Hotel

Tuesday 16 August

Reminisce Cafe

Tuesday, 9:00am to 10:30am

Memories and conversations keep us connected to our loved ones. Every month, the library is having a get together with a cuppa, as they introduce you to the magic of reminiscing. They will access a wonderful selection of resources to encourage friendly conversation, intellectual stimulation and reflection for those living with Dementia, their family and carers. Bookings essential.

Gordon White Library

BMA Kidspace

Tuesday, 10:00am to 2:00pm

Join local artists and performers for creative art activities designed for toddlers and their adults. Drop-in anytime between 10am and 2pm (live children's music from 11.30am to 12.15pm). BMA Kidspace, Artspace Mackay’s free and ever popular toddler’s program, gives children under five a chance to explore and have fun with art in a climate of co-operative learning. The program includes free artist-run craft activities in two sessions, Sess1: Anytime from 10 to 11:30am; Sess2: Anytime from 12:15 to 2pm with live musical entertainment 11:30am to 12:15pm. Bring your children along for a fun day of art-making, singing and dancing. Space is limited, and all participants should be seated during their stay. If there are no seats available in the room when you arrive, simply try again later.

Artspace Mackay

Wednesday 17 August

Mackay Farmers’ Market

Every Wednesday, 6:30am to 10:30am

The market is a showcase of our region’s amazing produce direct from the farmer.

Bluewater Quay

World Café

Tuesday, 10:30am to 12:30pm

World Café is a free culture-sharing group that meets every Tuesday (between February and November) from 10.30 am to 12.30 pm. Activities include cooking, art and craft, conversational games, small projects, workshops, information sessions and local excursions. For more information please phone (07) 4957 7222.

The Neighbourhood Hub, 4 George Street, Mackay

Sugar City Rock 'n' Rollers Mackay Club Wednesday Night Lessons

Every Wednesday, 7:00pm

Why not come along and learn to rock ‘n’ roll in a friendly and fun atmosphere with the Sugar City Rock ‘n’ Rollers Mackay Club? Previous experience is not required. Everyone learns at their own pace and, even better, the first lesson is free on your way to learning the four step style of rock ‘n’ roll. $5 for members and $8 for non-members after that. The club caters for social activities for club members with regular dances with live bands in attendance and away trips. For further enquiries call 0408 983 911.

58 Macalister St, Mackay

Thursday 18 August

Artist's Talk: In conversation with Shelley Engwirda

Thursday, 6:00pm

Join Mackay artist Shelley Engwirda as she talks about her exhibition ‘We Rise’ on show in the Foyer Gallery at Artspace Mackay. Inspired by her experience as a new grandmother, Engwirda explores the way female artists have been regarded historically. For this exhibition she examines the success and failures of the women’s movement through her multidisciplinary practice. The artist’s large scale patchwork quilts alongside glass work respond to what she considers major moments in the women’s movement from the 1970s to present.

Artspace Mackay

Peter Williams Medium Live

Thursday, 7:00pm

After numerous sell out performances in Australia, hugely popular psychic-medium Peter Williams is returning to Mackay. On the night, Peter Williams will demonstrate his amazing ability as he contacts and communicates with loved ones on the other side. He will be delivering their messages to the audience live on the day. Please ensure you arrive around 6:45pm for a 7pm start. Peter Williams is internationally known for his heartfelt and accurate insights and continues to amaze audiences with his ability to communicate with loved ones in the Spirit world. Peter has been reading for clients in Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Hong Kong and Japan for over 10 years. During a live event Peter uses his special ability to connect with souls that have passed over and help bring closure to those in need.

MECC

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Family Fun At MCC’s Open Day

August 11, 2022

Young and old flooded through the gates of Mackay Christian College (MCC) last Saturday, for the feast of entertainment on offer through the day and night.

It’s become one of the Mackay Region’s favourite family days to attend, and the 2022 Open Day did not disappoint.

While the open day is an opportunity for MCC to showcase its school to the Mackay and greater regions, families enjoy the displays and stalls and entertainment which makes it both fun and informative.

Marketing and Communications Officer Mrs Tish Scholtz said they couldn’t have asked for better weather.

“It was a beautifully sunny day, a spectacular evening and a great crowd to help us celebrate our open day,” Mrs Scholtz said.

“There was entertainment on stage throughout the event delivered by MCC’s Creative Academy. We had a great outcome from MCC students competing in the Lego and Baking competition, look out for future Master Chef and Lego Masters winners from MCC,” she said.

“Our house family mascots were interacting with the crowd, sharing chocolates and getting into mischief.”

With a variety of food, drinks and sweets on offer and the excitement of the amusement rides, young and old had a lovely day. The night concluded with a fantastic firework display.

The open day would not be a success without the hard work from the MCC staff, community support, and local Mackay business sponsorship.

Keep an eye on MCC’s Facebook page for the date of its Open Day in 2023.

Mackay Christian College

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Dancing In The Sunshine

August 12, 2022

Last Saturday exemplified what north Queensland winters are all about and it couldn’t have been a more perfect day for the return of BE Social Fest, bringing some of Australian music’s biggest names to Mackay.

The festival was the chat of the town and excitement was high; it had been a while since Mackay’s last opportunity to dust off their best festival ‘fits and check out some live music.

The festival’s objective is to bring together a fun bunch of festival goers to enjoy each other's energy and just BE, and when paired with an epic line-up and Mackay’s tropical winter climate, it was looking to be one hell of a night.

It’s no secret that Mackay isn’t on every musician’s touring radar but, with the support of Mackay Regional Council, Mackay Tourism and triple j, BE Social delivered a line-up and an event that organisers hope will put Mackay on the Australian music map.

BE SOCIAL

It was the locals who delighted the eager early afternoon crowds first, with Mackay’s Ruby Sue and Rockhampton’s The Stone Apes kicking off proceedings in style.

The Stone Apes’ lead singer Jye Kennedy has a swagger that has been likened to that of Gang of Youths’ Dave Le'aupepe, and the band’s catchy indie rock and captivating stage presence suited the Mackay winter afternoon perfectly.

LO'99 graced the decks next, mixing original heaters with songs from friends like Dom Dolla and more.

A deep house remix of Pink Floyd’s The Wall echoed between the Main Stage and the rave-tailored Social Stage with punters who were looking for a boogie spoilt for choice.

There was a noticeable abundance of pink scattered throughout the hair and outfits of punters and Peach PRC joined the pink party when she took the stage next.

Possibly the most TikTok famous person to visit Mackay, the rising pop star had the crowd in her hand the whole set, singing along to her viral hits God Is A Freak, Josh and a cover of Wheatus’ Teenage Dirtbag.

Middle Kids have been providing heartfelt, energetic and catchy indie rock for years and their 2021 album Today We’re the Greatest was no exception.

No strangers to Mackay, they delivered a set of youth-defining hits spanning both albums with the crowd singing and bopping along to songs like R U 4 Me?, Never Start and Edge of Town.

It’s always a treat when electronic and hip-hop acts perform with live percussion and Thundamentals provided the goods.

Their set of Aussie hip-hop anthems brought the crowd’s hands to the air, traversing through classics like Sally, Smiles Don’t Lie and their cover of Matt Corby’s Brother.

As the sun set in the west, the crowd grew, gearing up for an evening of epic electronic music and endless boogieing.

KLP was next behind the decks on the Main Stage with local producer Clovr closing out the Social Stage at the same time so there was plenty of dancing to be done between the two stages.

Hermitude were next to the Main Stage and played a career spanning set that indulged fans old and new.

The duo’s style has varied over the years, but the quality of heaters has remained consistently high.

There were many shoutouts to their early fans as they played classics like HyperParadise, Speak of the Devil and Through the Roof.

Hermitude once again proved why they’re considered icons and pioneers of the industry with a huge set that definitely had the crowd feeling “The Buzz”.

Mashd N Kutcher closed out the excellent day with a DJ set brimming with bangers that, of course, included their Dan Andrews-featuring viral hit Get on the Beers.

Punters dispersed, making their way to either of two official after parties organised by the BE Social crew, bringing an end to a day that proved Mackay is hungrier than ever for live music and good times.

Middle Kids brought the energy to BE Social Fest on Saturday afternoon. Photo credit: Sam Gillespie

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A Man On A Mission

August 4, 2022

On May 8, 2021, 33-year-old Holland resident Tom Boerman departed his home country, embarking on a journey of incredible proportions.

Mr Boerman is on a trek across all continents on foot – a 25-thousand-mile-long walk through seven continents including Antarctica.

Last week, on day 435 of his journey, Tom made his way into Mackay, posting on a local Facebook group looking for a place to stay.

“I travel for the experiences, and I walk for the talks,” Mr Boerman said.

“For example, I posted something in the Facebook group in Mackay and a few people replied.

“I stayed with my host, and he said that he had an airplane, so he took me flying – this is how it goes.

“He said, ‘if you take a day off, I will take you flying,’ so I’m not going to say no to that.”

Mr Boerman says he wasn’t happy with the life he was living in Holland and needed to do something about it.

“I was depressed, suicidal and addicted; it was time for a change,” he said.

“I sold everything and started travelling.

“Nowadays I’m just walking around the world meeting people; it’s an awesome experience.”

Mr Boerman’s travels have taken him from Holland through Europe and into Asia where he got stuck in Iran with border closures.

He made his way through the Middle East and America and eventually flew to Cairns, now making his way down the coast and into Adelaide.

He says he was pleasantly surprised with what Mackay has to offer.

“Mackay’s actually a really nice city,” he said.

“Everyone who lives below the equator is more laidback and chill.”

As Mr Boerman walks across the world, he relies on the generosity of strangers for things like water and space to set up his tent.

He loves meeting strangers all over the world and getting their perspectives on life and politics.

With this unique insight into humankind, Mr Boerman says humanity still exists.

“It doesn’t matter where it is … people are keen to help,” he said.

“If you show vulnerability, they will answer that with vulnerability.

“It’s not a fairy tale – it’s the worst way to have the best time of your life, that’s what I always say.”

Having made such a drastic change to his circumstances, Mr Boerman’s advice to people is to avoid getting stuck in a rut.

“Make sure you don’t become the prisoner of your own life,” he said.

“I always say ‘never sacrifice happiness for achievement’, and I see people in the western world striving for whatever, they just try to reach goals and achievements and I see people running and I look at their faces and I’m like, ‘why are you running? To me, it doesn’t look like you’re enjoying it.’

“I would say to people if you had only 90 days, what would you do?”

While Mr Boermn is driven by the challenge and experience, he is also walking for a cause.

“Now that I am 35 years old, I simply cannot travel for pleasure only,” he said.

“I want to give back.”

He is raising money for the Bungamati Foundation, a Nepalese social organisation assisting marginalized, poor children, women and people and strengthening the capacity of schools and communities.

“I do think we all have the right to dream, but in order to dream one needs access to education,” he said.

To find out more about Tom Boerman’s journey and to donate to his cause, visit www.iwalkaroundtheworld.com.

Tom Boerman is walking across the globe. Photo: supplied

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Local Author Launches Second Novel In Trilogy

August 4, 2022

You may know her as the beloved author of children's books starring Berky the Bush Turkey, but Pamela Gargett has recently finished penning her second book for adults drawn from inspiration from the Pioneer Valley.

Based in regional Queensland, titled The Quilted Valley, Ms Gargett’s novel is the second in The Cane Suite trilogy.

The Quilted Valley begins in Longreach with the return of a World War I soldier, and ends up in the Pioneer Valley – the namesake of the book.

A Mackay resident, Pamela has travelled extensively throughout Queensland – with the people and places she has come across helping to fuel her books.

“I’ve always thought of the Pioneer Valley as a patchwork with the spread of farms – all the interconnecting properties and the people who live there – forming a beautiful vista,” Pamela said.

“It was this view of the Valley, and how those people live alongside each other – all connected yet separate – that set the foundation for the interlocking stories in the book.”

While the third book is in the making, Pamela describes The Cane Suite trilogy as a set that can also be read as standalone books.

“The Quilted Valley has some totally new characters – with many strong, independent females leading the story threads.

“In this book, we watch those characters evolve from that post-WWI time through to the 2000s – with the third book then bringing those characters to the present day.”

Pamela is a former lecturer, teacher, and mentor to aspiring educators and has also authored two children’s books with the well-loved character Berky the Turkey – Birds Don’t Have Birthdays (2019) and How the Brush Turkey Lost His Egg (2017).

The Quilted Valley can be purchased at bit.ly/thequiltedvalley or on Amazon.

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Event Guide

August 4, 2022

Friday 5 August

Friday SUN.sets

Every Friday Evening From 6pm

Knock off drinks, lakeside dinner, good friends, and LIVE MUSIC.

Wake House Australia

Mackay IFF 2022 Opening Night Event: Official Competition

Friday, 7:00pm

Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Mackay International Film Festival, Film & Arts Mackay warmly invites you to this special Opening Night event.

BCC Cinemas Mackay

Latin Roots Night

Friday, 7:30pm to 10:30pm

Get your ticket and join in Latin Roots Night with the best Latin music, enjoy a complimentary drink and enter for the chance to win a Latin Roots t-shirt!

The Gallery Lounge and Bar

Saturday 6 August

Big Boys Toys Expo 2022

Saturday, 8:30am to Sunday, 3:00pm

The Ultimate Adventure Expo showcasing boating, fishing, camping plus a huge range of caravans, campervans, 4x4s, classic cars, performance cars, clothing, spas, DIY, mowers, excavators, sheds, tools, BBQs – you name it. And as always, stunt riders and fun for the whole family.

Mackay Showgrounds

BE Social Fest 2022

Saturday, 1:00pm to 9:00pm

BE Social Fest is back for its second year and is bringing some big names to the sugar city. Catch Hermitude, Middle Kids, Thundamentals, Peach PRC, The Stone Apes and more.

Harrup Park

Mackay IFF 2022

Saturday, 2:00pm to 8:00pm

2:00pm – Blind Ambition

4:00pm – Hive

6:00pm – Drive My Car

BCC Cinemas Mackay

Artists' Books on Show: Director's Choice from the MRC Collection

Saturday, 2:00pm to 3:00pm

Meet Artspace Gallery Director Tracey Heathwood at ART ON SHOW and see her present a selection of her favourite artists’ books from the Mackay Regional Council Art Collection. The Art Collection holds over 600 artists’ books and every two years Artspace Mackay hosts a national artists’ book prize, the Libris Awards. Tracey has a long association with the gallery and its collection of artists’ books and is herself a practicing printmaker. She will share personal insights into some of her favourite artists and artists’ books.

500 Pavilion, Mackay Showgrounds

Mackay Christian College Open Day 2022

Saturday, 3:00pm to 7:00pm

Every year, MCC has amusement rides, a variety of food and beverage stalls, displays, and activities, and not to forget our fantastic fireworks show to conclude the night. Tickets can be purchased through the Senior Campus front office or the Junior Campus reception, by cash or EFTPOS.

Mackay Christian College

Sunday 7 August

2022 Mackay Weddings & Events Expo

Sunday, 11:00am to 3:00pm

The annual Mackay Weddings & Events Expo is happening again in 2022! Fashion parade from 1:00pm. Food, coffee and beverages available. Prizes to be won on the day. Gold coin donation at the door for Headspace Mackay. There will be a wonderful choice of local vendors from our Mackay region ready to help you plan your special wedding or event!

St Pat's Hall Mackay

Sunday Live Music – One for the Road

Sunday, 2:00pm to 5:00pm

Music every Sunday from 2pm - 5pm. Head down to the Seabreeze Hotel this Sunday for some fresh tunes, delicious food, and ice-cold brews.

Seabreeze Hotel

Mackay IFF 2022

Sunday, 2:00pm to 8:00pm

2:00pm – Hit the Road

4:00pm – Compartment No 6

6:15pm – A Stasi Comedy

BCC Cinemas Mackay

Tuesday 9 August

Mackay Plumbing & Gas Trade Expo 2022

Tuesday, 4:00pm to 7:00pm

MPAQ invites you to attend your local Plumbing & Gas Trade Expo. Set out exhibition style, the event is FREE to attend and you'll have the opportunity to view trade displays and grab some delicious food and drinks, all while networking with industry representatives. A new addition in 2022 will be the interactive learning hub, giving attendees the opportunity to learn more about industry-related products and/or services in short, engaging presentations run in conjunction with the Expo. Registration and Expo Start Time: 4:00pm | Expo Concludes: 7:00pm. Complimentary canapes and drinks provided.

Magpies Sporting Club Mackay

Wednesday 10 August

Mackay Farmers’ Market

Every Wednesday, 6:30am to 10:30am

The market is a showcase of our region’s amazing produce direct from the farmer.

Bluewater Quay

Thursday 11 August

Art talk: How to start an ARI

Thursday, 6:00pm

Artist Run Initiatives & practical advice with Hamish Sawyer. Hear from Brisbane-based independent curator and writer Hamish Sawyer about what makes a successful Artist Run Initiative (ARI). Hamish will provide some relevant case studies, offer practical advice on how to start an ARI, and identify pitfalls to avoid. Hamish will also discuss his involvement with Outer Space, a Brisbane-based contemporary art organisation, its current SUPERCUT initiative and opportunities for Queensland artists.

Artspace Mackay

Envoy: Shark Cull Screening

Thursday, 7:00pm

Community screening of the ground-breaking documentary Envoy: Shark Cull – exposing the truth about shark culling programs on Australia’s East Coast. Join Humane Society International for the screening with a brief Q and A to follow.

Red Dog Brewery

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From Reel To Reef

August 4, 2022

Celebrating its 10th year of hosting the Mackay International Film Festival, Film & Arts Mackay has curated another exhilarating program of award-winning film titles from across the globe which will screen this weekend at BCC Cinemas in Mt Pleasant.

Starting at 7pm tonight, the Opening Night film event is the bitingly funny comedy from Spain Official Competition about a mismatched collective of artists and investors making a film for all the wrong reasons. The film boasts a wicked dialogue and stellar acting from Spanish greats Penelope Cruz and Antonio Banderas. After the screening, the audience are invited to enjoy some delicious Tapas and drinks in the cinema foyer. Tickets are $22 and are available online through www.eventcinemas.com.au or at the box office.

One of the films on offer at this year's festival is the multi award-winning drama from Japan, Drive My Car, playing on Saturday, 6th August. Drive My Car is a beautifully haunting and absorbing recreation of a short story collection by the renowned Japanese writer Murakami which focuses on exploring emotions like regret and sorrow. The film won multiple awards including the Academy Award for Best International Feature Film in 2022 as well as a Golden Globe and a BAFTA Award.

Other award-winning titles on offer are the Iranian drama Hit the Road playing on Sunday, 7th August.  This striking feature debut is a sincere and moving comic drama that follows a family of four as they drive across the Iranian countryside. In addition, screening on Saturday 6th August is the Australian-made documentary Blind Ambition, a true story of an unlikely team of Zimbabwean refugees turned sommeliers who shake up the international wine establishment when they compete in the World Wine Tasting Championships.

The closing film on Sunday, A Stasi Comedy, is a hilarious and brilliantly acted comedy from Germany which follows a man’s double life as an underground poet and a Stasi agent in East Berlin in the 1980s which comes back to haunt him 30 years later. Also in the program are films from Albania (Hive) and Finland/Russia (Compartment No 6).

In addition, and as a result of generous funding from the Queensland Government (Flying Arts Alliance and Regional Arts Australia), there will also be films shown in Sarina on August 13 and Proserpine on September 25 as part of the program.

Film & Arts Mackay President and film programmer Sally Marsden says it is evident that people are not staying away from the cinema, but rather grabbing opportunities like the film festival and the monthly film screenings to watch quality, independent cinema on the big screen.  

The full program and ticket details can be found on FAM’s website filmartsmackay.weebly.com or on their Facebook page and programs are available at the cinema box office.

Blind Ambition

Drive My Car

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