As you read this, the granddaddy of all Australian music events – Tamworth Country Music Festival – has been run and won for the 44th year in a row. It’s rated amongst the top 10 music festivals in the world and over 10 days it features some 700 artists across more than 2,800 events. It also attracts over 213,000 music lovers, almost doubling the town’s population.
The seven clubs and 12 pubs in the town play an integral role in the event, with packed houses for their free and paid shows every night and with bars and restaurants at maximum capacity.
The Wests Entertainment Group (West Tamworth League Club and Wests Diggers) have even introduced a Festival Fan Club Membership allowing festival goers a 3 month membership to have access to shows as well as member discounts at bars, cafes and restaurants whilst they are in town. With over 5,000 people already signed up to the new membership, it also gives the group a great data base for future marketing. The Group is also in the process of developing 4-star motel accommodation.
Over in Parkes, some 22,000 Elvis fans descended on the small rural centre for the annual Elvis Festival in January. The 4-day fun festival grows year on year and just like Tamworth, the town doubles its population providing a major income boost for the 9 pubs and three main clubs in town.
The good news is that Deniliquin in the Riverina region, hopes to revise is Deni Blues & Roots Festival next year. Discussions for the resurrection of the Deni festival which was last held in 2014, were instigated by Deniliquin RSL board members and senior management. The economic impact suffered by businesses in the town due to the festivals demise prompted the move, with a view to holding an Easter event in 2017. Preliminary discussions have been held with Chugg Entertainment who introduced the original event in partnership with Rob Potts Entertainment Edge.
The town already hosts the Deni Ute Muster over the October long weekend, but that is held at a large site a long way out from the township. The proposed host site for the revised Blues & Roots Festival is the central Waring Gardens site which will benefit nearby town businesses.