Woodford Folk Festival has launched a world-first innovative and ambitious arts camp experience, after being forced to cancel its multi-award-winning festival due to COVID-19 uncertainty, social distancing and travel restrictions.
As General Manager Amanda Jackes explains, two, five-day September school holiday camps, called Bushtime, will instead offer small-scale Woodfordia experiences with some live concerts, workshops and environmental education projects.
There will also be a program of activities for children, with the event perfectly timed to coincide with the school holidays.
Organisers believe the two five-day Bushtime programs to be the first of their type anywhere in the world.
The full program for the two camps is on the Woodfordia website and the cost is competitive with the best caravan parks.
Last year, just before the Woodford Folk Festival, organisers launched Lake Gkula, the largest purpose-built swimming and sustainable recreation lake in the world.
Woodfordia Executive Director Bill Hauritz says it has received positive international recognition.
“The swimming experience will be better for many families than the beach - It’s that good” Bill says.
Woodfordia has developed during the past 26 years as a superb camping ground, with shade and excellent facilities.
The basic price of Bushtime covers camping and core events with a selection of priced events (more than 80 workshops) on offer as an addition.
“We can curate an entire experience for individuals, couples and families along with food and bars – the numbers will be capped and all inside the limitations imposed by a comprehensive Covid-19 plan. If an outbreak threatens Queensland, the events will be cancelled and all tickets will be refunded,” Amanda explains. “People can feel safe”.
Some of the 70 Queensland artists involved in Bushtime are Shellie Morris, Linsey Pollak, Bearfoot, Tenzin Choegyal, Hat Fitz and Cara, The Dreggs, Barleyshakes, Karl S. Williams, Hussy Hicks, Youkali, Company2 and dirtgirl and scrapboy.
“We think this is an incredible offering and our wish is that it will provide a way for musicians and many artists to find hope in an otherwise devastating circumstance,” Amanda says.
“With many of us all so accustomed to attending live performances as part of our normal lives, the thought of sitting on a grassed amphitheatre, under the stars experiencing a live concert with my family is something we’re really looking forward to” says long-time Woodford Folk Festival patron Sarah Hillhouse.
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