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The Garden of Unearthly Delights @ the Adelaide Fringe

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by James Newcombe (subscribe)
Freelance writer for feature articles, web content and blogs. Specializing in non-fiction articles on a range of subjects including lifestyle, travel, architecture and product reviews.
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Adelaide Fringe, Garden of Unearthly Delights
Entry to the Garden of Unearthly Delights. Image by writer.

Undoubtably my favourite thing about the Adelaide Fringe festival has to be the Garden of Unearthly Delights.

Whenever I book an act at the Fringe, I always hope it is in the garden, as this is the place to be come Fringe time. There is nothing better than soaking up the atmosphere inside the garden under the fairy lights as the sun goes down on a balmy Adelaide evening during summer.

Adelaide Fringe poster, Garden of Unearthly Delights
Fringe poster. Image courtesy Fringe website.

From humble beginnings with just one tent in 2000, the garden has evolved to become the real heart and soul of the Fringe. It's grown organically and recently spilled over Rundle road into Rymill Park where this area (known as Gluttony) has a unique look and feel all its own.

Le Casca Deur, Adelaide Fringe, Garden of Unearthly Delights
Le Casca Deur features cabaret and comedians. The number of venues has now grown to 11. Image by writer.

It's great to wander amongst the circus tents and odd assortment of temporary structures and pavilions whilst listening to the often humourous spruikers trying to convince people to buy tickets. From the comical, zany, mystifying, edgy, avant-garde to the offbeat, the Garden offers a range of cabaret, comedy, circus, physical theatre and music to thrill all ages.

Mark Ogg, Melbourne painter, Adelaide Fringe, Garden of Unearthly Delights
Some artwork by Mark Ogg-Melbourne painter. Credit Mark Ogg

This adult carnival also has amusement rides, a series of bars (one in a double-decker bus), sideshows, freakshows, buskers and stalls. The garden boasts a range of foods to tempt you including chips in a cone, corn on the cob, Chinese and Indian food, baked potatoes, healthy burgers, vegetarian options and desserts.

The Deluxe tent, Garden of Unearthly Delights, Adelaide Fringe
The Deluxe tent. Features top comediennes Cal Wilson, Claire Hooper, Hannah Gadsby and Ruby Wax this year. Image by writer.

The Garden of Unearthly Delights is open from the 14th of February to the 17th of March 2013. You can purchase tickets online at FringeTix, from the booth in Rundle Mall or at the entry. Entrance to the garden is free, but there is no stamp-out policy so if you leave you'll have to join the queue to get back in. The Garden is open on the weekends from 10am with a majority of the entertainment aimed at families. The Garden is closed to minors (18 and under) after 10pm.
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Why? Because frenzied February and mad March is Adelaideís best time of year
When: 14th Feb- 17th March 2013
Phone: For tickets ring FringeTix: 1300621255
Where: Rundle and Rymill Park, East terrace, Adelaide.
Cost: Varies - see website for details. Cheaper tickets available to previews.
Your Comment
Although I enjoyed reading your article about the Garden Of Unearthly Delights I thought I should point out a couple of things pertaining to your article.
Firstly a majority of the Bars and Box Office booths located throughout the Garden venue have EFTPOS facilities available.
Also if you don't want to line up buy a ticket to one of the shows, easiest way to get in quicker!
On the weekends the Garden is open from10.00am with a majority of the entertainment is aimed specifically at families in particular the children which goes through to the early evening and as I also understand the garden is only closed to minors (18 and under) from 10pm each day that the Garden is open.
Lastly I would also say that considering the exorbitant cost of public liability and all the health and safety factors at this point in time, unfortunately we possibly will not see the pond area used.
Hope you donít mind if I help clear up these points up for you.
by mark_ (score: 0|4) 2811 days ago
Great write up, can't wait to spend some time in the Garden!
by Hayley (score: 3|1016) 2811 days ago
Why is this article promoted as 'free' activities?
Not counting the cost of walking to the venue, there is nothing 'free' about this event
by dontb (score: 0|4) 2780 days ago
Exactly the part where if you want to go in and have a look around, its free entry.
by James Newcombe (score: 2|359) 2780 days ago
Thanks James,I haven't been for about 5 years, but you have wet my appetite, I've just checked out some acts this year and they look pretty good also thanks mark for the follow up comments about the eftpos and the 10pm close for under 18's
by samir (score: 2|126) 2808 days ago
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