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5 Weird & Wonderful Australian Festivals

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by Lesley Mitchell (subscribe)
Author/lecturer/Intuitive/Natural Therapist/Artist/Soap-Maker/Chef. WEBS: www.RenascentBathBody.com.au or www.RenascentCollege.com Also find us under RenascentBathBody or RenascentCollege on eBay, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram
Published June 20th 2022
Have you heard of all these? Are you a true Aussie?
Lockdown is over, we banded together and now we really want to come together in the quirky, fun events that truly make us Aussies. Not an Aussie but a visitor, a tourist? These wacky things are for you to share in too.

Let's get the ball rolling (In no particular order):
1: Broken Heel Festival, Broken Hill
Broken Hill is famous for a lot of things, and some may argue that it was put on the map by the film The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.

Whilst this film is now heading towards its 30th anniversary, Broken Hill has claimed it as its own, with stage productions abounding all around the world, it is imperative that it lives on in the fabulous LGBT event Broken Hill's delights us with: the annual Broken Heel Festival.

In a fabulous celebration in September, the festival amazes people with three stages, and features an incredible and diverse line-up of comedy, cabaret, and themed fun activities. Click HERE for the website

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Some of the fun acts at the Broken Heel Festival. *Image Broken Hill Festival website


2: Abbey Medieval Festival, Caboolture (Brisbane)
If the thought of dressing up in a mediaeval costume, perhaps duelling or simply studying art and archaeology, the Abbey mediaeval festival will tickle your fancy.

This fun festival incorporates chainmail, re-enacted mediaeval periods, costumed battles, knightings and many performances from the mediaeval times. You will feel like you have stepped back in time.

Along with all of this revelry are amazing ye olde food vendors. Come along and see if you can find your knight in shining armour. The event is held in July in Caboolture north of Brisbane, at the Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology. Click here for the website.

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Dress up to join in the fun at the Abbey Medieval Festival. *Images AMF Website


3: Beer Can Regatta - Darwin Lions
Way back in 1974, Lutz Frankenfeld and Paul Rice-Chapman created the Darwin Lions Beer Can Regatta, promoting the local Swan Breweries. The fun and festivities carry on to this day where this event is attended by thousands of people.

Not only racing boats but these boats must also be made entirely out of beer (or soft drink) cans and they come in all manner of shapes and sizes. The race is one when somebody finds the hidden object and returns to the shore.

Not only the sailors but the general public getting on all the fun with flour bombs and many pirate-inspired tactics to fight off the other boats, in true Aussie fashion, anything goes. Click here for the website

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A fun Beer can boat at the Regatta. *Image Bjørn Christian Tørrissen, CC BY-SA 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons


4: Rotary Henley on Todd Regatta
What could be more Aussie than racing boats in a river with no water? The participants are encouraged to do the craziest activities throughout the day including five team players pulling the sixth one on a boogie board as fast as they can on a dirt track.
Shovels are used in place of paddles and there are many other events including participants carrying their boats.

The largest event is the battle of the boats where vessels, which are built on top of four-wheel-drive vehicles, into combat with each other using water cannons and flower bombs. Held in August each year. Click here for the website.

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The battle of the boats. *Image Henley on Todd website


5: Australian Wife Carrying Competition
The statement picking up a wife has never had more meaning than in this wacky festival in Singelton. You need a pretty strong sense of humour, a good marriage and strong shoulders to compete in this festival where the husbands will literally pick up their wives (or girlfriends, sisters, cousins or friends) over their shoulders and run through the 250-metre obstacle course in an effort to beat all of the other couples to the finish line.

On the way, they will have to undertake limbo bars, a water course with sand trap and various hurdles. You would definitely want to have a good relationship and one that is not challenged by ultimately being dumped in a muddy pool of water. Click here for website.

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Not always flattering, but certainly hilarious at the Wife Carrying Competition. *Image Singleton Show Website


What other events do you know that make us proud to say we are Aussies. Use the comments box at the top of this article to share your great ideas with us.
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Why? Aussies love wacky, quirky events
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