Mary River icons in lantern pa­rade

The Gympie Times - - NEWS -

A SPEC­TAC­U­LAR laser light show and an evening lantern pa­rade fea­tur­ing gi­ant lanterns of the Mary’s rare and threat­eneds will be just a cou­ple of the high­lights of this year’s Mary River Fes­ti­val at Kandanga to­day.

This year, a newly-cre­ated lung­fish lantern will join the Mary’s other icons – the Mary River tur­tle and the Mary River cod, the mi­gra­tory shore­bird, the eastern curlew and, to fur­ther re­mind fes­ti­val­go­ers of the marine con­nec­tion, a dol­phin.

Across the coun­try, the whole week­end will be a time of re­mem­brance, with to­mor­row mark­ing the cen­te­nary of the sign­ing of the Ar­mistice to end World War I.

Re­mem­brance Day in the Mary Val­ley has an added di­men­sion, this year mark­ing nine years since then Fed­eral En­vi­ron­ment Min­is­ter Peter Gar­rett said “no” to the ill-con­ceived Trave­ston Cross­ing dam.

The three-and-a-half-year cam­paign that led to the Re­mem­brance Day 2009 an­nounce­ment gave Mary Val­ley lo­cals a whole new mean­ing to fight­ing for your coun­try.

Fes­ti­val com­mit­tee or­gan­iser Glenda Pick­ers­gill says the fes­ti­val cel­e­brates not just the “no dam’”de­ci­sion and the peo­ple who fought to bring it about, but also the spe­cial com­mu­ni­ties along the Mary, both hu­man and eco­log­i­cal.

The theme of this year’s fes­ti­val is ci­ti­zen sci­ence, not a new con­cept for the Mary, where eight teams of vol­un­teer wa­ter watch­ers take monthly wa­ter qual­ity read­ings for the Mary River Catch­ment Com­mit­tee.

The fes­ti­val has earned a strong rep­u­ta­tion for its great mu­sic pro­gram, heaps of chil­dren’s ac­tiv­i­ties, an in­for­ma­tive as­sem­blage of pre­sen­ters in the speaker’s tent, great food, stalls, raf­fles and lots more.

This year marks the fourth year of MRCCC’s Spring in the Mary pho­tog­ra­phy com­pe­ti­tion with win­ners an­nounced at the fes­ti­val, along with op­por­tu­nity to vote for peo­ple’s choice.

An­other high­light this year will be the largest cat’s claw weav­ing work­shop, which has re­ceived as­sis­tance from the lo­cal RADF.

Col­lec­tors with a keen eye for the bright yel­low flow­ers have been out col­lect­ing the en­vi­ron­men­tal weed, cat’s claw creeper but par­tic­i­pants are also en­cour­aged to bring their own.

Gates open at 11.30am with the pro­gram kick­ing off at mid­day. Or­gan­is­ers have kept this year’s en­try at just $5.

For de­tails phone Glenda Pick­ers­gill on 0411 443 589.

Photo: Con­tributed

OUR ICONS: The Mary River tur­tle and Mary River cod will be joined by a lung­fish at to­day's Mary River Fes­ti­val evening lantern pa­rade.

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