Car­ni­vale party

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - THE GROVE - Jessie Tol­son

PORT Dou­glas Car­ni­vale is turn­ing 20 and to cel­e­brate this mile­stone this year’s Car­ni­vale is set to be the big­gest one yet, aimed at not only of­fer­ing the favourites but bring­ing in some new events to keep things fresh and of­fer more.

Car­ni­vale 2014 will be held across 10 days from May 16 to 25 and will likely see more than 20,000 peo­ple from around Aus­tralia con­verge on the re­gion for the fes­tiv­i­ties.

This year’s pro­gram will see events and ac­tiv­i­ties such as the first Yabusame tour­na­ment to be held out­side of Ja­pan, which will take place at the Fam­ily Beach Day.

Yabusame, Ja­panese archery on horse­back, will bring a lot of at­ten­tion to Car­ni­vale, as fully trained archers and horses will hit Four Mile Beach for some fierce com­pe­ti­tion, fol­lowed closely by last year’s ad­di­tion me­dieval joust­ing which is back by pop­u­lar de­mand.

An­other new­bie to the ar­range­ment is the Car­ni­vale Gar­den Games, an­other spec­tac­u­lar day of good old fash­ioned fam­ily fun, with games such as gi­ant darts, gi­ant jenga and bocce just to name a few in Rex Smeal Park.

The Gar­den Games is set to be­come an an­nual event so the win­ners will be able to de­fend their ti­tles ev­ery year and gain the ul­ti­mate brag­ging rights.

Port Vil­lage Shop­ping Cen­tre will play host to the Street Art and Mu­sic Fes­ti­val which will run from Mon­day to Fri­day 11am-7pm where each day buskers, per­form­ers and artists will sing and dance their way through the cen­tre for the en­joy­ment of crowds and the chance to be ti­tled the Car­ni­vale 2014 Street Per- for­mer of the Year.

Car­ni­vale gen­eral man­ager Roy Weavers said the 20-year an­niver­sary will be a huge cel­e­bra­tion and a pat on the back for the Dou­glas re­gion.

‘‘There is such an air of pos­i­tiv­ity this year,’’ he said.

‘‘Ev­ery­one wants to cel­e­brate, and there is so much to cel­e­brate this year all over.

‘‘From the new coun­cil, all the plans around town from the Ma­rina to the Sher­a­ton and the fact it’s 20 years since Car­ni­vale be­gan.

‘‘I am de­ter­mined with these new events to kill of any neg­a­tiv­ity around Car­ni­vale and of­fer some­thing for ev­ery­one.

‘‘I’ve also changed the event spon­sor­ship em­pha­sis of pre­vi­ous years from try­ing to es­tab­lish a ma­jor big money spon­sor for each cal­en­dar event to of­fer­ing a lot of smaller op­por­tu­ni­ties to a lot more lo­cal busi­nesses.

‘‘ These shared spon­sor­ships now start at just $550 which I hope al­le­vi­ates any pres­sure on mar­ket­ing bud­gets which I know are al­ways over-stretched.’’

There are some great spon­sor­ship op­tions avail­able to busi­nesses look­ing for max­imise ex­po­sure, es­pe­cially with Yabusame, which will likely re­ceive na­tional tele­vi­sion cov­er­age.

Op­tions in­clude hav­ing one of the horses named af­ter you or your busi­ness for only $550, and with com­men­tary on tele­vi­sion, it sounds like a win­ner.

Al­ter­na­tively, a back cloth and tar­get where archers will be shoot­ing and where all eyes will be look­ing for max­i­mum cov­er­age is avail­able for just over $1000.

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