Big Skies Festival Brings Bush to the Beach
I was proud to support the efforts of my Mayoral colleague Paul McVeigh from the Western Downs Regional Council
Big Skies Festival is launching the best of the west on the Sunshine Coast, as the event organisers get ready for an even bigger experience – from 29 April to 3 May 2020 – in a bid to stimulate the drought-declared economy.
Sunshine Coast Mayor, Mark Jamieson encouraged residents to throw their support behind their country cousins and travel to the Western Downs for the five-day event, which includes a two-day music concert at the grand old estate of Jimbour House.
Western Downs Regional Council Mayor Paul McVeigh said there is an exciting line-up of iconic Australian artists – including Killing Heidi, Kasey Chambers and the Choir Boys – who will perform under the impressive country night sky.
“We established this event in 2018 to showcase the incredible experiences the Western Downs can offer but also to help and support our local business owners and community during this heartbreaking drought,” Mayor McVeigh said.
“The spirit of the Western Downs really shines through at this event which has everything from camp cooking under the stars, farms tours and of course this year there is the extension of the concert to two-days.
“We want visitors to come out for five-days of camping and really immerse themselves in the true country life – in 2019 we welcomed attendees from 87 different postcodes!”
Western Downs Regional Council is officially drought-declared, receiving just 160.2mm of rain until November this year, compared to 606.0mm in 2018.
“The agricultural industry is one of the Western Downs region’s largest employer so you can imagine the strain this is having on our community,” Mayor McVeigh said.
“Jimbour runs around 1500 high quality cattle and I think it is important that people can really see how hard our farmers and producers work.
Russell Pastoral manages the heritage-listed Jimbour House and said having the Big Skies Festival’s main event hosted on one of the first stations established in the Darling Downs is a true honour.
“The music concert is set in the grounds of the grand sand-stone mansion and the tours of the estate have become one of the highlights of the event with guided tours selling out two years in a row,” xxx said.
“It’s not often people can step back in time and see how generations of people have helped to shape this country.
“The drought has certainly taken its toll on Jimbour – our land is used to grow cereal cash crops and winter forage crops for stock.
“While we’re waiting desperately for rain, we’re so thankful for the rest of Australia to come out to the Western Downs for the Big Skies Festival and support us.”
Some of Australia’s greatest artists will headline the Saturday and Sunday music concert including Daryl Braithwaite, The Radiators, Kasey Chambers and Dragon.
There are limited number of early bird tickets which are priced from $140 for the two-day concert pass – the sale will end when the 500 tickets are sold out.
“The great news is that the early bird ticket special for the two day concert have gone on sale just in time for Christmas for anyone who is hoping to find a perfect gift – the festival truly encompasses the best of the west,” Mr McVeigh said.
Camping sites are available for up to 1500 caravans, camper trailers and motorhomes with visitors able to experience an action-packed program which includes the camp kitchen, showcasing home grown produce, a licenced bar and live entertainment.
Arrow Energy proudly support the Big Skies Festival which runs from 29 April to 3 May in 2020. For more information visit bigskiesevents.com.au.