OUTBACK FESTIVALS, SHOWS AND EVENTS
Northern Territory Shows, Festivals & Events
For details and dates of all the Agricultural Shows and Field Days held in Northern Territory each year, check out the web site at:
Country Shows: Agricultural Societies Council of South Australia: http://www.sacountryshows.com/pages/other-shows-field-days/northern-territory-shows.php
Australian Farm Machinery Field Days & Dealers: https://www.farmmachinerysales.com.au
The following web sites are worth a look to see what festivals and events might be happening in the NT:
Katherine Events & Regional Events
The Katherine region holds many events throughout the year, each containing fun and excitement for the whole family.
For a full listing of events and timings, check out the web site: http://www.visitkatherine.com.au/pages/regional-events/
Daly Waters Pub Outback B&S Ball – Easter Weekend March/April
A legendary party at a legendary pub with events and activities including a ute muster, rodeo and ball.
King Ash Bay Easter Barra Classic – Easter March/April
This is one of the best known fishing competitions in the Northern Territory and has been run for many years. Held on Easter Saturday and Sunday each year, this competition has categories and prizes that give everybody a chance to win. The Easter Classic isn’t just about the fishing. Entertainment is provided on three nights – Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Contact the King Ash Bay Fishing Club, ph: (08) 8975 9800, web: http://www.kingashbay.com.au.
Aileron Bush Weekend – Easter Weekend March/April
Aileron racecourse, 130km north of Alice Springs. Weekend of family fun, including rodeo, novelty events and a dance, BYO alcohol.
Territory Freshwater Fly Fishing Open - May
Each year the Darwin Flyrodders hosts the Territory Freshwater Open using the iconic Corroboree Billabong which has over 50 kilometers of navigable waters. The premier species targeted are Barramundi and Saratoga, with others such as Tarpon, Sleepy Cod, Longtoms, Catfish also eligible for points for length. The premier species earn double points. The base for the Competition is the Corroboree Park Tavern on the Arnhem Highway which is only a 15 minute drive to the launching ramp. This is a catch and release competition held annually at the beautiful Corroboree Billabong, part of the renowned Mary River.
For all the details and dates, go to their web site: https://www.darwinflyrodders.org.au/event-3261406
Daly Waters Campdraft and Rodeo – long weekend in May
Over the three days of the long weekend in May there’s a variety of outback, adrenalin pumping rodeo events to check out… as well as some that you can join in on if you are game. Each evening there’s live music and entertainment as only the Daly Waters pub can provide.
For more info, ph: (08) 8975 9941, or check out the web site at: http://www.campdraft.com.au/ and also Facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/dalywaters
Never Never Festival Mataranka – May
A magical weekend filled with fun for all the family. The weekend starts with a cattle auction on Friday afternoon followed by a family evening of “Walk-Up” bush yarns and poetry and a camp oven stew and damper meal. Saturday a Family Fun Day in the park, book signing at The Stockyard Gallery. Sunday a Bush Chapel service and markets with something for everyone.
Alice Springs Carnival – long weekend in May
Located at the foothills of the beautiful MacDonnell Ranges, Pioneer Park and the Alice Springs Turf Club are home to the richest county cup carnival in Australia with $100,000 in prize money up for grabs. The races run over the May long weekend, from Friday to Monday, Monday being the BIG day for the XXXX Gold Alice Springs Cup.
For more details, check out the Alice Springs Turf Club web site at: http://www.alicespringsturfclub.org.au/
Freds Pass Rural Show - May
Enjoy a country music concert, livestock and equestrian displays, competitions, arts and crafts, a polocrosse carnival, a wood chop exhibition, and a fireworks spectacular. For more information check out their web page: https://www.fredspassruralshow.com.au/freds-pass-rural-show/
Uluru Outback Fest - May
Have a true Aussie experience with the locals watching exciting camel races, visiting markets and trying the local produce and bush tucker. This 4 day event include activities such as Outback Sounds of Silence, Markets, Camel Calcutta, Camel Cup Race Day, Fashions on the Field, Frock Up and Rock Up Ball, Pancake Brunch, and much more. For more information check out their web page: http://www.ulurucamelracingclub.com/our-story
Pine Creek Goldrush - May/June
Step back in time and pan for gold. The weekend features the annual gold-panning championships, a damper-making contest, nugget hunt, food stalls and a free concert. For more information check out their web page: http://www.victoriadaly.nt.gov.au
Darwin 4WD, Boating & Outback Camping Expo - June
Bringing you the latest and greatest equipment to set you up for your next adventure is the Darwin 4WD Boating & Outback Camping Expo, one of the Top End's biggest and best events of the year. The two day event will be held at the Darwin Showgrounds, Stuart Highway Winellie NT in May. There will be a wide range of the latest gadgets, equipment, vehicles, boats and trailers on show and available for purchase; including 4WD equipment and accessories, caravans, camper trailers, and all the necessary camping gear, touring equipment, fishing rods, tackle, nets, and equipment you could think of! Web: https://darwin4wdcampingexpo.com.au
Barunga Festival – June
Experience the ways of the indigenous people in this remote region, with a sports program plus didgeridoo workshops, dance, arts and crafts demos, bush tucker tastings and spear throwing.
For more details, check out their web site at: https://www.barungafestival.com.au
Brunette Downs Races, Campdraft and Rodeo – June
Held in June the on Brunette Downs Station, which is situated on the Barkley Tablelands of the NT, 135kms north of the Barkly Homestead, and approx. 350 kms North-East of Tennant Creek. The station hosts four days of non stop outback fun and entertainment including amateur horse racing, campdrafting, rodeo, gymkhana, kids and adult events as well as art and photography exhibitions.
Web site at: http://www.abcraces.com.au
Artback NT's Malandarri Festival – June
Celebrate the history and culture of the Top End and Gulf with performance from Yanyuwa, Mara, Garrwa, Gurdanji and Wandangula peoples . For more information go to: https://artbacknt.com.au/what-we-do/indigenous-traditional-dance/malandarri-festival/
Borroloola Show - June
The show combines a gymkhana with agriculture, gardening, lifestyle, arts, crafts and competition in an entertaining day out.
For all details, web: https://northernterritory.com/katherine-and-surrounds/events/borroloola-gulf-show
Finke Desert Race - Australia's Greatest Desert Race – June
The Tatts Finke Desert Race is an off road, multi terrain two-day race for bikes, cars, buggies and quads through desert country from Alice Springs to the small Aputula (Finke) community. The race is held each year on the Queen’s Birthday long weekend in June. “Finke” as it is commonly known, is one of the biggest annual sporting events in the Northern Territory and has the reputation of being one of the most difficult offroad courses in one of the most remote places in the world. Finke is unique and the most fun you can have with a helmet on! Check out the web site at: http://www.finkedesertrace.com.au/
Camel Cup Alice Springs – July
Camel Cup is an amazing race that is iconic, quirky and its reputation reaches far beyond Northern Territory soil.
The Cup is held annually on the 2nd Saturday in July in its own arena at Blatherskite Park, a section of the Central Australian Show Society grounds. The family and fundraiser event is well known for its unpredictable and very entertaining camels as well as the brave and crazy riders.
Entertainment is assured, with nine unique races scheduled throughout the day. There will be lots of action between races, too. Belly dancers, rickshaw races, 'Kids Kamel Dapers' hobby camel races, rides, Mr and Miss Camel Cup challenges, food stalls and bars will add to the carnival atmosphere.
For all the details web: https://northernterritory.com/alice-springs-and-surrounds/events/apex-camel-cup
Tennant Creek Show - July
When the show comes to town, the bush folk roll in and join with the town folk for this once-a-year event that showcases some of the agriculture of this region of the Northern Territory. The Tennant Creek Show public holiday is in the dry season on the second Friday each July. Aside from the cattle yards, crafts and competitions, there’s a chance for locals and tourists of all ages to have fun on rides, eat some great food and pick up some show bags. Check out their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=tenant%20creek%20show. For more details on shows check out: https://www.tennantcreekshow.com.au
Darwin Lions Beer Can Regatta – July
The Darwin Lions Beer Can Regatta is a project of the combined Lions Clubs of Darwin and is held at Mindil Beach, Darwin. Come and enjoy a great family day. There are beach events for all ages and the water events will be spectacular! Entrance is by a gold coin donation. Proceeds go to projects of the combined Lions Clubs of Darwin. Bar facilities are available. There is no BYO due to their licence. Soft drinks and water will also be available. Mindil Market food and craft stalls will will be trading all day.
For all the details and dates, check out their web site:
Alice Springs Show, Blatherskite Park – July
Alice Springs’ premier two-day event, the Alice Springs Show brings the community together each July. The first show was held in 1960 and the event retains a certain nostalgia and magic, the opportunity for experiences which happen ‘Only at Showtime,’ whether that be a dagwood dog, ride on the dodgems, catch up with old friends or the delight as your child sees they’ve won a prize for their cupcakes. Beside all the normal show events and activities there’s an art & photography display, craft display, hobby display, and lots more.
For all the details and show dates, web: https://alice-springs.com.au/
Katherine Show - 3rd Friday and Saturday of July each year
Enjoy the rodeo, campdraft, dressage, show jumping, polocrosse and side shows and stalls at this rural show. Held at the Katherine Showgrounds, Victoria Highway.
For all details, web: http://www.katherineshow.org.au/
Darwin Festival - August
Darwin Festival is held over an exciting 18 days and nights, with local and touring performances and events including outdoor concerts, workshops, theatre, dance music, comedy and cabaret, film and visual arts. Web: http://www.darwinfestival.org.au/
Desert Harmony Festival Tennant Creek - Aug
The Desert Harmony festival celebrates and promotes the rich cultural diversity of the Barkly region. Come and immerse yourself in the local Barkly Indigenous culture at the Arts Culture Experience Day. Enjoy Arts markets, damper making, traditional dance and indigenous comedy. You can find out more information on their Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/desertharmonyfestival, or check out the web site: http://www.desertharmonyfestival.com/. You can also find out more information at the Barkly Regional Arts web site: http://barklyarts.com.au/
Alice Springs - Henley-on-Todd Regatta - 3rd Saturday in August
Australia is known as a very big island nation. At its geographic centre 1,500 kilometres from the coast is Alice Springs, which hosts the famous Henley-on-Todd Regatta on the 3rd Saturday in August. Join in, have fun, or just enjoy the hilarity from under the shade of gum trees on the edge of the dry Todd River bed, and help raise funds for charity. You could make your own boat and even join in the Grand Parade! Alice Springs Rotary Clubs have had over 50 years to perfect the one-day event. Henley-on-Todd Regatta begins with a street parade of all entrants through Todd Mall to the Todd River.
For all the details of this fabulous event, and dates, check out the web site: http://www.henleyontodd.com.au/, and their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/HenleyonTodd
Garma Festival - August
Embrace and learn the ways of the Yoingu community, with visual arts, ancient storytelling, dance, governance and education. You can find out more information on the web site: https://www.yyf.com.au
Desert Song Festival Alice Springs – September
Held over 10 days usually in September, singers, musicians and audiences from Alice Springs and Central Australia and visitors to the region experience something special with choirs from the vibrant multi-cultural community coming together to present a series of events that showcase the unique culture of Central Australia. For more details go to: http://www.desertsong.com.au.
Jabiru Mahbilil Festival - September
The Jabiru Mahbilil Festival is a one-day celebration of cultural diversity and community. Running from midday to midnight, Mahbilil is orchestrated to shift in mood as it progresses.
During daylight hours, it is a family friendly event crammed with activities, workshops for kids, rides, displays, Indigenous art exhibitions & demonstrations of weaving, painting and other crafts. Local showcasing includes the art and performance workshop products from the Jabiru Youth Centre and The Jabiru Area School. Food features prominently with large earth ovens with buffalo, barramundi and the speciality of the region, magpie goose. Join in the fun with competitions that include spear throwing, didjeridoo blowing, magpie goose cooking and kite-making and flying.
At sunset the festival transforms with projections, lightshows, music and dance till late. The music is diverse and includes funky bands from across the Top End and Darwin. For all the details of the Festival, and dates, check out their web site: http://mahbililfestival.com/
Red Centre Bird Festival - late Sept
Festival includes early morning and evening bird watching field trips, tag-along tours, photography workshops, wildlife photo gallery and a special presentation showing the behind the scenes of the Eagle Cam viral videos. You can find out more information on the web site: https://alicespringsdesertpark.com.au/main/news/red-centre-bird-festival-in-full-flight
Barkly Muster Gold Rush Campdraft – September/October
Muster the troops for a real outback bush experience with horsemen, rough riders and cowboys test their might in a weekend of country fun, with daredevil events, live music and onsite camping. For more information go to: https://www.facebook.com/BarklyGoldRushCampdraft/
Arnhemland Bird Week – September/October
Get your twitter fix at Arnhemland Barramundi Nature Lodge on a tour where bird leaders provide visitors the chance to view endemic, rare and endangered bird species and visit a range of habitats. For more information go to: http://barralodge.com.au/birding-culture/
Marrara Christmas Craft Fair – November
Beat the heat and shop up a storm at the indoor Marrara Christmas Markets. Over 130 stalls selling quality local arts and crafts and products unique to Darwin will be on display and there will also be live music and plenty of food and drinks. For more information go to: https://www.marraracraftfair.com
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