The biggest and best-loved free community event of the season, Mardi Gras Fair Day, returns on Sunday 17 February with over 80,000 people expected to come together in Victoria Park in Camperdown for a day filled with live entertainment, over 200 stalls, and food and drink outlets. 2019 will see the all new Doggywood and Sports Village and the official Fair Day After Party extravaganza at the Seymour Centre.
Fair Day 2019 will shine a light on rising LGBTIQ music stars that are reshaping the Australian contemporary music landscape and breaking new ground. Hosted by Faustina Agolley, you will discover a heady mix of queer trailblazers including soulful electronic pop duo and Eurovision contenders Electric Fields, genre-defying J Award winner Mojo Juju and breakout electronic tomboy-pop artist HANDSOME.
Also taking the stage are Detroit-based alt-pop singer-songwriter Flint Eastwood, fierce R&B storyteller & producer Maribelle and Melbourne-based synth-pop duo The Marion Cranes plus super DJ duo stereogamous spinning tunes between sets.
“Fair Day is such a special event for the community,” said Mardi Gras CEO Terese Casu. “It is a loud, proud and welcoming celebration of community spirit and connectedness and a wonderful opportunity for the LGBTIQ Community, their friends, families and supporters to come together and enjoy a blissful day of fun, food and festivities.”
Creative Director Greg Clarke added “This year’s Fair Day features two very exciting new additions, an amazing concert championing queer music artist from within our diverse community on the ANZ Main Stage, and The Arena – an undercover space with raked seating to house both Doggywood and Team Sydney’s sports demonstrations.”
The Arena morning program is a dog-lovers dream. Be sure to not miss the Doggywood Pageant presented in partnership with Hush Puppies, as Sydney’s finest dogs battle it out for the coveted titles of Best Dressed and Most Talented. Registrations are open pre-event at the Mardi Gras website and also next to The Arena on the day.
There are two sessions (11.00am and 12.30pm), and plenty of great prizes for both dogs and owners. Get a front row seat to witness some spectacular canine acts as Kelly Gill and the Wonderdogs team of talented Border Collies, team up with celebrity vet Dr Katrina Warren for two show and trick demonstrations at 10:30am and 12:00pm.
In the afternoon Team Sydney takes over The Arena, with demonstrations and activities including Volleyball, Tug of War, the Speedos Fashion Parade, the Swing Out Dancers, Martial Arts and Fitness.
Victoria Park Pool will be open on Fair Day, so be sure to pack your swimmers if you want to take a dip. Especially for Fair Day, the pool will be offering free entry for children under the age of 10 years.
The mid-morning program on the ANZ Main Stage will start from 10:30am and will feature performances from the NSW Police Band, Swing Out Sydney Dancers and the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Choir. In the early afternoon you will be able to get a taste of some of the extraordinary queer performance, cabaret and burlesque artists performing throughout the Mardi Gras Festival.
Everyone’s favourite Fashions of the Fair will be held on the ANZ Main Stage at 1:30pm, so prepare those glittering summertime picnic looks and get ready to strut-your-stuff. Mardi Gras talent spotters will be roaming the Park handing out Golden Tickets for you to compete in Fashions of the Fair and you could be in the running to win tickets for you and 3 of your best friends to Mardi Gras’ new retro pool event, Strictly Kaftan Party.
For those looking to dance the summer day away, the new Absolute Dance Floor will feature an electric line-up of DJs GI Jode, Victoria Anthony and Amanda Louise and as the sun-sets two of Sydney’s iconic DJs, Kate Monroe and Dan Murphy will take to the decks on the ANZ Main Stage to keep the party vibes pumping until close at 9:00pm.
The official Fair Day After Party this year will be across the road at Mardi Gras’ new late night Festival Club at the Seymour Centre. After a day of soaking up the rays in Victoria Park with Sydney’s LGBTQI community head to the Festival Club for a night of entertainment and dancing featuring a stellar line-up of artists hosted by NICOLA and Kryptonite including DJ sets by Betty Grumble and pop-up performances from Trigger Happy and Garret Lyon. Entry to the official Fair Day after Party is $5 or free with any ticket to a show on that night at Mardi Gras Central.
Mardi Gras Fair Day 2019
Victoria Park, Corner City and Parramatta Roads, Broadway (Sydney)
Event: Sunday 17 February 2019 – from 10.00am
Image: Mardi Gras Fair Day – Jeffrey Feng Photography