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Riverfire 2013

Home > Brisbane > Community Events | Family | Festivals | Fireworks | Nightlife
by Geraldine Massey (subscribe)
I'm an experienced corporate communicator and editor with an eye for interesting events and an attachment to my trusty Oxford dictionary.
Watch Brisbane Festival go out with a brilliant bang
Brisbane's favourite festival winds up on Saturday 28 September with the ultimate celebratory conclusion. Last year the annual Sunsuper Riverfire fireworks extravaganza moved from the gala festival opening position to valedictory status. It will take this role again this year, ensuring that the Brisbane Festival goes out with the glorious bang it deserves.

riverfire, sunsuper riverfire, brisbane fireworks
Image from Brisbane Festival website

For one night only the Brisbane nightscape will be aflame with what pyrotechnicians call comets, flash pots, wheels, gerbs, and airbursts but what you and I know as shimmering, sparkling explosions of colour, light and sound that will coax "oohs" and "aahs" of wonder and appreciation from enthralled crowds. And I do mean crowds: almost 500,000 people attended last year's event, squeezing their way into a number of river vantage points including South Bank, the CBD, and Kangaroo Point.

Fireworks won't be the only entertainment above Brisbane. The official program kicks off at 12 noon with the Australian Defence Force Open Day at South Bank and aerial displays by a number of ADF planes and helicopters. Alas, the legendary F-111 'dump and burn' spectacles will no longer light up the night. The official aircraft participants will be announced closer to the event because operational requirements take precedence, but last year saw Black Hawks, Super Hornets and ARH Tigers take to the skies.

riverfire, sunsuper riverfire, brisbane fireworks, brisbane festival fireworks
Riverfire 2012. image from Brisbane Festival Facebook page.

The fireworks themselves will be choreographed to a brand new soundtrack, which will be broadcast live on Triple M. If you can't make it to the event you can watch it all on Channel Nine from the comfort of your lounge chair or bed.

You also might consider dining at one of the many restaurants that will offer ringside viewing of the spectacle. This can be a great way to beat the crowds and enjoy the fireworks in pleasant surroundings with a glass of something refreshing in hand. Check out the South Bank website for dining options and remember to book early.

See a day in the life of Sunsuper Riverfire 2012 below:

If you are going to brave the crowds and the chilly night air and want to get the most out of your family's Riverfire experience there are a few simple rules you should follow:

1. Plan ahead. Take advantage of the downloadable map of vantage points to plan where you will watch. Winging it on the night just won't cut it. The most popular vantage points are South Bank Parklands, Dock Street, Kangaroo Point Cliffs, Victoria Bridge, Wilson's Lookout, City Riverwalk, and Captain Burke Park.

2. Go early. As usual, huge crowds will flock to the key vantage points, with some hardy fireworks tragics camping out to get the best spots. Don't think you can arrive just before 7pm and still get a great view.

3. Take public transport. Parking will be strictly limited in most popular areas and the necessary road, bridge and river closures will complicate things even further. Find out about closures here. Translink is your festival fireworks friend.

4. Find out what you're allowed to take. South Bank Parklands is an alcohol-free zone for Riverfire. You're also not allowed to bring pets, bikes and scooters, any drink bottles with broken seals, cutlery or glass.

5. Be polite and considerate. At Riverfire venues a lot of people are squashed into very small spaces. Don't let 'familiarity breed contempt'. Have some consideration for those around you and everyone should be able to enjoy themselves.
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Why? It's a wondrous spectacle
When: Saturday 28 September. ADF Open Day and aerial displays from 12 noon, fireworks from 7pm.
Where: South Bank
Cost: It's free
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