Dungog Festival attracts thousands

The Festival's gala street parade on the Saturday featured a procession of vintage tractors.
The Festival's gala street parade on the Saturday featured a procession of vintage tractors.

Organisers of the Dungog Festival held over the October long weekend believe the new format centering around Dowling Street was a success.

Nancy Knudsen from Dungog Arts Foundation, which runs the festival, said while Destination NSW was yet to finalise the exact numbers, it is estimated 5000 people flocked to the area.

Close to 300 people dined under the stars for the Long Table Dinner in Dowling Street and the Long Lazy Lunch which traditionally closes the festival  was the largest ever with 180 guests. Oktoberfest at Wallarobba Hall attracted three times its previous record and huge crowds attended the Sculpture on the Farm event at Fosteron. The annual garden ramble also attracted large crowds.

“We are particularly pleased that with the new model in running the festival, proceeds went to 30 local or non profit or community organisations who took part,” said Ms Knudsen.

“We have had wonderful feedback from all the stall holders from Sunday’s event who said they would be back next year.”

On the Sunday night the entertainment was competing with the rugby league grand final but still managed to attract a healthy crowd.

Ms Knudsen said the festival was run with 99 per cent volunteers.

“It was just amazing the way the volunteers all came together.”

She said the committee had a good formula to work with and looked forward to further improving the event.

“We will never change the date, it will always be held on the October long weekend,” she said.

“The goal is to benefit  Dungog for the other 51 weeks of the year.”

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