Thursday, August 24, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life



Nothing lights up our region like Daly Bay Illuminate.

Queens Park will come alive with giant neon dogs, unworldly flowers, glowing sea creatures and so much more, from next Thursday, July 27, to Sunday, July 30.

Better still, entry to this all-ages, illuminated wonderland is completely free.

The event will run from 6pm to 9pm each night.

Mayor Greg Williamson said this year’s massive drawcard installation was the Lost Dogs’ Disco by ENESS.

“This is an immersive installation of 16 dogs, some up to 5.5m tall,” Mayor Williamson said.

“There are four distinct characters, inspired by three dog breeds – poodles, bull terriers and dachshunds – that are curled-up, standing and even touching noses,” he said.

“As visitors journey through the colourful pack, the dogs’ coats light up and they greet passers-by with happy grunts to celebrate each new person’s arrival.

“This is an amazing installation that will be a huge hit with families and will act as a centrepiece for this tremendous event.”

Mayor Williamson said Daly Bay Illuminate was the most attended event of the Mackay Festival of Arts calendar.

“If we get good weather, there can be up to 10,000 people a night going through this event.

“It’s an amazing drawcard event that is the perfect night out for families – they can stroll through the installations, take some fantastic photographs and relax on a picnic rug after grabbing a bite to eat from one of the food vendors onsite.”

Festivals and Events Coordinator Sarah Porter said another highlight of Daly Bay Illuminate would be Oasis by Indirect Object.

“Oasis is a glowing display of organic-shaped artworks that are crafted from consumer waste,” Ms Porter said.

“Each artwork has been handcrafted in extreme detail, with more than 100 PET bottles creating each flower,” she said.

“Neon Marine Park by Carla O’Brian is also beautiful.

“It features a cluster of colourful sea creatures found in Australian waters and will make for some great photos.”

Ms Porter said a dedicated team of local artists had also spearheaded the construction of an assortment of UV-enhanced artworks.

“Lalune Croker, Tracey Johnson, Cheb Jeffery, Lisa Roebig Holmes and Wanda Bennett have been instrumental in running community workshops in the cricket shed at Queens Park to ensure local residents have the opportunity to create works to be part of the displays,” she said.

“The talented MECC lighting team will then bring these works, and the natural landscapes of Queens Park, to life with expertly installed lighting arrays.”

Daly Bay Illuminate is an alcohol-free event and the Festivals team recommends bringing some mosquito spray and warm clothes for the evening.

Entry to the event will be via the corner of East Gordon Street and Goldsmith Street and on Goldsmith Street.

For more information and updates, follow Mackay Festivals on Facebook.

Lost Dogs Disco by ENESS is an immersive installation of 16 dogs, some up to 5.5m tall that will be a standout at Daly Bay Illuminate. (Photo: Diana Snape photography)

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