Celebrating its 25th year, the Lismore Lantern Parade is an annual community arts festival held on or around the longest night of the year, the Winter Solstice.
Attracting in excess of 25,000 people each year, the festival celebrates community, art and nature with arts, crafts, workshops, regional cuisine, a spectacular parade, lanterns, parade bands, street theatre, music, carnival dancers, illuminated puppets, fire art and pyrotechnics.
“Lanterns, fire and outdoor celebration are deeply embedded in many cultures from China, Japan, Burma and Vietnam to Europe and Africa,” says Jyllie Jackson, Artistic Director and CEO, Lismore Lantern Parade. “The lantern represents a positive metaphor for community optimism and hope throughout the world and it was from this tradition that the Lismore Lantern Parade was born.”
Celebrating 25 years of bringing light to the heart of Lismore, this year’s theme Rivers of Light – represents all the community events that the Lantern Parade has travelled to over the years. These communities will be invited back to the heart to celebrate this grand occasion.
Each year the Lantern Parade involves participants from Lismore, throughout the Northern Rivers and visitors to the region who have attended workshops in lantern, mask and costume making. School and community workshops start at Easter each year with many other volunteers travelling from across the Northern Rivers region, South East Queensland, around NSW, South Australia and Victoria to participate in this event.
In 2019 the event will be held on Saturday 22 June commencing at noon with a unique art and craft market, street food vans, children’s activities, a youth hub, workshops, lantern decorating and a festival stage featuring local musicians and dancers.
At dusk illuminated puppets in the Lismore Library tell the story for the year and the Lantern Parade dances through the streets of the Lismore central business district (CBD) and culminates at the Lismore Quadrangle, a public meeting square in the heart of the city centre, for a fiery theatrical finale and fabulous firework display.
New program events include a Gala Concert featuring Moorambilla Voices, a banquet dinner, and a photographic exhibition at the Lismore Regional Gallery.
The 2019 Lismore Lantern Parade will be held on Saturday 22 June. For more information and program overview, visit: www.lismorelanternparade.com.au for details.
Image: Illuminated lanterns at the Lismore Lantern Parade – courtesy of LightnUp Incorporated