Fes­ti­val forg­ing ahead

Whitsunday Times - - LOCAL NEWS - By Sharon Small­wood

DE­LIV­ER­ING a mu­sic fes­ti­val for the Whit­sun­day com­mu­nity has been an on­go­ing bat­tle for mu­sic pro­moter John ‘Scratch’ Grey, but he says he has not given up.

The fes­ti­val “Whit­sun­day Call­ing” was orig­i­nally sched­uled for Septem­ber 2012, to be held on Coun­cil’s con­tro­ver­sial Sports Park land. For­mer mayor Mike Brunker and Whit­sun­day MP Jan Jar­ratt sup­ported the event, with prof­its to be re­turned to the com­mu­nity via a spe­cially set-up char­ity.

“Then the elec­tion came and there was a com­plete new line-up of state and lo­cal govern­ment,” Scratch said. “We had to start all over again.” With the land no longer avail­able, dates up in the air, bands lost and the char­ity un­able to be es­tab­lished, it was back to the draw­ing board for Scratch, but fast-for­ward to Au­gust 2013 and it’s a dif­fer­ent story, he says.

Posters are up for a new-look Whit­sun­day Call­ing fes­ti­val, to be held over the long week­end of Oc­to­ber 5 and 6. The venue is an 80-acre pri­vate block on the cor­ner of Gre­gory Can­non Val­ley and Richard­son Roads, pro­vided by the owner for the event.

Of the 14 bands that Scratch says have now signed on the dot­ted line, sev­eral are crowd pullers in their own right.

“And I’ve got a good mix­ture of reg­gae with Katchafire, Ash Grun­wald for the young peo­ple – he’s a killer blues player – Rose Tat­too for the old rock­ers, Jenny Mor­ris for the chilled out [and more],” Scratch said.

The fes­ti­val will also fea­ture The Dynosaurs – a su­per group com­pris­ing mem­bers of ACDC, the An­gels, Choir­boys and Hush.

Only 3000 fes­ti­val tick­ets are avail­able with an adult week­end pass cost­ing $180 and a one-day pass cost­ing $100.

Prof­its will go to Ideal Place­ments, a not-for-profit, com­mu­nity-based em­ploy­ment agency, pro­vid­ing jobs for peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties.

Scratch is en­cour­ag­ing Whit­sun­day res­i­dents to jump aboard and sup­port the event.

“It’s a fes­ti­val on a long week­end with bands we know are per­fect for here,” he said.

For more in­for­ma­tion visit www.whit­sun­day­call­ing.com.au.

WHIT­SUN­DAY CALL­ING: Mu­sic pro­moter John 'Scratch' Grey is invit­ing mu­sic lovers from far and wide to the in­au­gu­ral Whit­sun­day Call­ing Fes­ti­val, sched­uled for the long week­end of Oc­to­ber 5-6.

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