Chance to go behind the scenes of festival
Strawberry Fields Festival organisers are inviting members of the local community to a barbecue and tour of the festival site next Wednesday.
The tour will include a behind-the-scenes look at the festival grounds, with the music and arts program set to officially start the following day.
Guests will have the chance to meet SFF directors, who will lead a short tour and information session, while Tocumwal Chamber of Commerce and Tourism will provide a barbecue for a small donation.
Tocumwal Chamber of Commerce and Tourism president Sergio Redegalli is encouraging people of all ages to visit the site to see the festival’s ‘‘fantastic, world-class infrastructure’’.
‘‘People probably think the festival is just a few tents and stages, but the amount of professionalism put into the infrastructure is phenomenal,’’ he said.
‘‘For those who’ve not been there, you can’t imagine the size of it, you really need to see it to believe it.’’
Most of the festival’s infrastructure will be on show during the site tour, including two main stages, the tea lounge and market area.
This year’s art program will showcase works from all over the world. It sees the return of Melbourne creative outfit John Fish and the large-scale geometric art of Dylan Blackstone.
Strawberry Fields Festival director Tara Benney said she was looking forward to showing the community what went on behind the scenes in order to run the event.
‘‘We really want to give locals who may not want to attend the actual festival the chance to understand what it’s all about, and who the people behind it are, in a relaxed environment,’’ she said.
Mr Redegalli said regardless of some people’s perceptions about the annual festival, the positive impacts for the community could not be ignored.
‘‘From a business perspective the festival is a massive opportunity for locals to put their foot in the door and access the 6000 attendees who wouldn’t otherwise see their goods. And the construction that happens for the event, a huge percentage of the materials comes locally,’’ he said.
‘‘There’s also the huge (internet) search engine ranking that Strawberry Fields gives Tocumwal, the hashtags on social media — that’s something we would never be able to afford with Google.
‘‘It’s a win-win for our community.’’
Those interested in attending the information session and tour are asked to meet at the festival site on Lower River Rd, about 10 km west of Tocumwal, at 5.30 pm. Gates close at 8pm.
For more information phone Sophie Burge on 0428 381 269 or Shaun Connor on 0488 123 270.