By HARRY CLARKE | SPONSORED
THE tiny Western Downs town of Tara will come alive with colour, culture and camel races next weekend for what organisers anticipate will be the community’s biggest biennial celebration yet.
More than 8,000 tickets to the Tara Festival of Culture and Camel Races are expected to be snaffled up by the time the festival begins next Friday, meaning the town’s population will more than quadruple throughout the three-day event.
If the novelty of having herds of loping camels pounding around the local racecourse wasn’t enough to attract the crowds, this year the event’s live music bill will be headlined by the crème de la crème of Australian country music.
The Wolfe Brothers, who earlier this year took home two Golden Guitar awards from the Tamworth Country Music Festival, will be supported by James Johnston, one of the industry’s most exciting newcomers whose single Raised Like That last week became an ARIA-certified gold record.
The main event will see roughly 30 professional racing camels and jockeys compete in various sprint races throughout Saturday and Sunday, with teams from the camel racing scene all around Australia.
The event program also comprises roving cultural performers and entertainers, yabbie races, an afternoon of barefoot bowls, sheep shearing demonstrations, fireworks, markets and a “Fiesta Tropicana” party on the Friday night.
“When the Tara Festival of Culture and Camel Races was first held 22 years ago, no one could have foreseen that the event would one day grow to this fame and size,” said Kerry Kelly, president of the festival organising committee.
“There is a passionate team of local volunteers who are behind the success of the festival and for us it’s just one more reason we’re so proud of our little town.”
Festival and camping tickets are available from the Tara Festival of Culture and Camel Races website.