Thursday, May 9, 2024


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Introducing Mackay’s 2024 Festival Of Arts

Radiant smiles and laughter filled the Sarina Sugar Shed last Friday night, as creative members of Mackay gathered together for the kick-off of the 2024 Mackay Festival of Arts. Approximately thirty events will combine to make the 2024 Mackay Festival of Arts a dynamic showcase of art, culture, cuisine and entertainment. This year’s program promises to delight all your senses, broaden your horizons and leave you with memories that last a lifetime!

Festival and Events Officers Tia Gostelow and Phoebe Short, Executive Manager MECC and Eventsand Graphic Designer Chantelle De Meillo. Image Credit: Mackay Regional Council

Igniting Creativity At The 2024 Mackay Festival Of Arts

Mayor Greg Williamson said there will be sensational new events that will create a buzz for the community.
“This is the thirty-seventh year of the arts festival, so thank you very much for the people that actually make this happen, we couldn’t do it without all of the sponsors and, all of the favourites are back this year of course.
“There’s comedy combined with wine appreciation, a massive all-in pub choir music experience, a free form dance event in the dark and an exciting new children’s wonderland at Wisely Wine and Food Day complete with 12,000 bubbles, every minute,” Mayor Williamson said.
“Wisely Wine and Food Day will also be bringing food to the fore this year with multiple exclusive pop-up restaurants that combine gastronomical delights with prime positioning to allow festival goers to enjoy a culinary experience that will be on a whole new level.”
Mayor Williamson said the Whitsunday Wealth Festival Hub would return to the Bluewater Quay this year, with a fresh approach to showcasing local music talent, pop-up bars and street cuisine.
“Each night a new band and genre of music will take centre stage to provide free entertainment for those looking to relax on the riverfront,” he said.
The Mayor also acknowledged the amazing local artist whose work was chosen as the cover of the Festival program.
“We reached out to local artists to create an original cover for the Mackay Festival of Arts 2024 program and then put these out to the public to vote on,” he said.
“The people’s choice was Lian Meaney’s 'Outside the Lines', which is a mixed media piece in acrylic and ink and includes a collage of found materials.
“Not only is the work beautiful – it also makes this program a work of art in its own right that will be a collectors’ item in years to come.”
Festivals and Events coordinator Sarah Porter encouraged residents and visitors to get outside their comfort zone and explore the many experiences on offer.
“This program is so diverse – there’s First Nations storytelling, literature, photography, art exhibitions and workshops, wine tastings, performance art, ballet, chamber music, arthouse films and jazz,” Ms Porter said.
“Add in pub rock, paint and sips, a folk music concert, pop culture, craft brews, local band showcases, karaoke, comedy, family theatre and, of course, the festival features that are Daly Bay Illuminate and the Wisely Wine and Food Day, and you have every reason to be in Mackay in July,” she said.
“July is going to be huge, and we really couldn’t be more excited to welcome festival goers to our region.”

Festival and Events Officers Tia Gostelow and Phoebe Short, Executive Manager MECC and Events and Graphic Designer Chantelle De Meillon holding the 2024 Mackay Festival of Arts Program. Image Credit: Mackay Regional Council

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