Port Fairy Moyneyana Festival organisers are already turning their minds to next summer after completing, what they deem, the best program in the event’s 65-year history.
More than $30,000 was raised for various local organisations and charities from a variety of events spanning from Christmas Eve to the recent Australian Day long weekend.
The festival is credited as being a major drawcard for many of the 12,000-plus visitors to the town for summer holidays and is regarded as a benchmark for community events.
“We consider we’ve got the right formula — as much free family entertainment as possible,” committee chairman Reg Harry said.
“Once you look after the kids you look after the parents. The reason why our festival is so successful is that people from many local groups get involved.
“Proceeds are spread across the community. We’ll be meeting on Monday night to plan for next summer.”
Highlights were the New Year’s Eve street procession which drew a record crowd estimated at up to 10,000, and the street rodders show, with more than 500 entries.
“I would class this as our best-ever festival,” Mr Harry said.
“We had 12,000 programs printed and ran out. One couple came from as far as Cairns to attend a listed event. Sponsorship from the Moyne Shire, local businesses and the media was great and we worked on a budget of $65,000-$70,000. We often get asked by other communities for tips on how to run a successful festival.”
Festival founder John Brophy, now of Richmond, still takes a keen interest in the evolution of what started as a few spinning wheels on the town green to raise money for the local hospital.
“He was on the phone to me at the weekend and said how impressed he was,” Mr Harry said.