Get ready for a whale of a time

Pilbara News - - Front Page - Louise Alling­ham

Ex­cite­ment is build­ing for the big­gest event on Ex­mouth’s cal­en­dar — the Nin­ga­loo Whale Shark Fes­ti­val.

Fes­ti­val co-or­di­na­tor Branka King said the event was an im­por­tant fix­ture on the Ex­mouth com­mu­nity cal­en­dar.

“The fes­ti­val’s main ob­jec­tive is to bring to­gether Gov­ern­ment de­part­ments, busi­nesses, in­dus­try and com­mu­nity mem­bers and all the while we’re ed­u­cat­ing peo­ple of all ages about the whale sharks, their fight for sur­vival and that swim­ming with th­ese harm­less crea­tures is a re­ally mag­nif­i­cent ex­pe­ri­ence,” she said.

Shire of Ex­mouth com­mis­sioner Ian Fletcher said the Shire recog­nised the value of the fes­ti­val for the re­gion and was pleased to pro­vide sup­port.

The Shire has agreed to pro­vide al­most $7000 of in-kind sup­port for the event in­clud­ing waiv­ing fees plus the pro­vi­sion of traf­fic man­age­ment, oval mark­ing and clean­ing staff.

“It is a hugely pop­u­lar event on Ex­mouth’s cal­en­dar and we are only too happy to play a part and sup­port the vol­un­teer com­mit­tee that does such a mas­sive amount of work or­gan­is­ing the fes­ti­val each year.”

The fes­ti­val will kick off this Fri­day with a gala open­ing launch at Man­tarays Re­sort.

Ms King said the evening open­ing should not be missed.

“We’ve got some high-cal­i­bre en­ter­tain­ment from some in­cred­i­ble per­form­ers and this is your chance to leave your swimwear at home and dress up to the nines,” she said.

Per­form­ers on the night in­clude Afro-Kreol singer Grace Barbe, the Perth Sym­phony Or­ches­tra string quar­tet and didgeri­doo vir­tu­oso Mark Atkins.

Fes­ti­val Day on Satur­day in­cludes a full day line-up of events and ac­tiv­i­ties at Talan­jee Oval.

The fes­tiv­i­ties get off to a healthy start at the Ground Con­trol and Gar­den Fun Run from 8.30am. Peo­ple of all ages are wel­come to join in the 4km course, which in­cludes a healthy break­fast at the fin­ish line.

From 10am, there will be an ar­ray of mar­ket stalls, food vans, live en­ter­tain­ment, amuse­ments, rides and free events and ac­tiv­i­ties as well as lo­cal dis­plays from busi­nesses, or­gan­i­sa­tions and artists. Head­liner act the South­ern River Band will be play­ing with Datura 4 on the Satur­day night at the Cadil­lac’s Bar and Grill from 7pm.

Sun­day is the big day out on the reef, where the main stars of the fes­ti­val, the whale sharks, take cen­tre stage.

Whale Shark swim tour op­er­a­tors are of­fer­ing swims at a dis­counted rate for fes­ti­val go­ers.

But if swim­ming isn’t your thing, en­try to the Cape Range Na­tional Park will be free thanks to the De­part­ment of Parks and Wildlife.

Fes­tiv­i­ties will end at the Whale Shark Fes­ti­val Sun­down at the Ex­mouth Yacht Club.

There will be live en­ter­tain­ment, fam­ily ac­tiv­i­ties, beach games, cir­cus work­shops and food and drinks from 3pm.

Pic­ture: Louise Alling­ham

Mex­i­can fi­esta band Kal­l­i­dad at the 2016 Nin­ga­loo Whale Shark Fes­ti­val.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.