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5 Tips for Booking Your Byron Bay Blues Festival Accommodation

If you’re planning to come to the Byron Bay Blues Festival for the first time – or even if you’ve been before, there are a few things you should keep in mind as you’re looking for your ideal place to stay. Before we get to the ‘tips’, the thing to remember is that Byron Bay is a small town – the larger annual festivals do attract more people than the town can accommodate… particularly when you take into account that the festival’s artists and crew are also staying here. Plus many people who come every year – re-book the same place each year. Here are my 5 tips to booking accommodation for the Blues Festival;

1. People : You need to know how many people are staying with you. Accommodation in Byron is very strict on maximum numbers… sneaking a few extra friends in to sleep on the floor won’t be tolerated and could result in loss of bond &/or eviction. There are places to stay that sleep one to a limited number of places that sleep up to 10 people. Most places have 1, 2 or 3 bedrooms.

2. Duration : It’s a five day festival, most of the accommodation has a minimum stay of 5 or 7 nights. There are a few properties with 3 or less minimum night stay – if you can only come for a few nights, grab one of these ASAP.

3. Location : For 2008, the Festival has moved back to Belongil Fields – which is located on Ewingsdale Rd (the road you take from the highway into Byron Bay) about 2.5 km from the centre of town. Shirley St and Belongil offer a 2-3 km walk to and from the festival, all of Byron Bay is serviced by shuttle buses, with accommodation in the hinterland and nearby villages offering their own charms.

4. Price : The Easter long weekend is just about the most expensive time of year to stay in Byron Bay. As a rule of thumb the closer to the festival or Beach and the shorter you stay – the more expensive it will be. In Byron Bay expect to pay $75-$125 per person per night – more for luxury, less if you stay out of town.

5. How to Book : The sooner you start the wider choice you’ll have. You will have to secure your booking with a deposit (often 50%), and you may loose it for a late cancellation.

2007 Fatherhood Festival

The fourth annual Fatherhood Festival, to be held in and around Bangalow and Byron Bay over the weekend of August 31st – Sunday September 2nd (Father’s Day), got a jumpstart last Tuesday when Channel 7′s Sunrise program recorded live to air from Bangalow. Ken Bright ran a tool box workshop for Dads and Kids, Lisa Parkes had dads in wild relay races with their kids, and the Nappywrap founds had babies and dolls safety-pin free while attending to a parents most important task. The full weekend program of concerts, workshops and activities for the whole family will be announced shortly. Keep informed at www.fatherhoodfestival.com

New Years Eve 2006 – Safe Community Event

The Byron Bay Safety Committee has been formulating the program for a safe community event for this year’s new years eve in Byron Bay.

“With the success of last year’s low key, community based, alcohol free, new year event,  the same formula is planned for this year to ensure a safe night” said Chair of the committee, Mayor Jan Barham. “Council has sought an approval from the Minister for Local Government for the alcohol prohibition again as this was a key factor in providing safety for everyone.  This year it has been decided to not close off Lawson Street and focus the event on the beachfront reserves and minimise the impact on local businesses”.

“The event will commence at 3pm with childrens’ activities and market stalls at the beach front. The popular parade will feature again and there is a request to the community to join in by starting to prepare costumes and group presentations. The committee is also calling for stallholders to make an expression of interest to have food and craft stalls on the night and an opportunity for community groups to have free stalls to showcase their work and activities.” A grant application has been made to seek support for providing workshops to offer training in music and the performing arts to allow them to engage in the night’s event.

The committee thanks those local performers who have offered their talents for the night and buskers are invited to apply to perform on the night.

The Safety Committee also appreciates the generous donations from businesses for prizes for the parade and is hoping that there may be other support offered to assist in the provision of necessary infrastructure for the night.

I Went to Splendour

Plenty of highlights again this year - more mud too.

The Great;

  • The total excitement on my 11 year olds face
  • Sonic Youth
  • The Zutons
  • The Grates
  • ... and Brian Wilson

The Good;

  • Market stalls (same as previous years)
  • Food stalls (same as previous years)

The Bad;

  • Slow moving through the mud
  • More people (componded by the mud)

All up - another excellent Splendour. If you get the chance to go next year - you should.Enough from me, here's what the Splendour people say; Good Vibrations Abound.......

SPLENDOUR IN THE GRASS 2006 has drawn to a close, celebrating its 6th birthday with many magical musical moments. Organisors would like to praise the 17,500 strong audience for their largely sunny disposition and friendly camaraderie during the two day camp fest.

Due to overnight rain, there were delays opening gates. We thank all our patrons for their patience. Once we were up and running, the new personalised ticketing system was a smashing success.

On Saturday July 22nd, St John Ambulance treated approximately 200 patrons for minor injuries consisting primarily of blisters, bruises, scratches, headaches and vomiting. Seven people were transported to hospital for further observation. On Sunday July 23rd approximately 150 patrons were treated for similar minor complaints and three patrons were transported to local hospitals for further observation for suspected drug / alcohol intoxication.

The TENT OF MIRACLES stage performed weddings, baptisms, exorcisms and the odd confession and the WORKSHOP AND PERFORMANCE STAGE saw the whacky and the wonderful.

The inaugural G.W MCLENNAN Theatre stage proved to be a smashing success with numerous artists from BOB EVANS and CLARE BOWDITCH to MOGWAI, JOSE GONZALEZ and AUGIE MARCH filling the new space to capacity.

On Saturday, TV ON THE RADIO played an astonishing set while New York guitar heroes SONIC YOUTH blazed their way through a headline set that capped off day one in the Super Top. Meanwhile DJ SHADOW, PAUL MAC, and the AVALANCHES had punters in the Mix Up tent dancing up a storm.

The Sunday line-up was tremendous – from THE ZUTONS and YOU AM I to SNOW PATROL, YEAH YEAH YEAHS and a welcome return by mystery band THE VINES who played a scorching set – their first major Australian festival performance since 2003 Homebake. WOLFMOTHER electrified the audience in the Mix Up tent and SCISSOR SISTERS delivered a set of high camp pop tunes and previewed new material from their forthcoming album.

The legendary BRIAN WILSON and his extraordinary band delivered the sing-along set of the event, entrancing a multi generational audience with hit after hit after hit ending with the beautiful ‘Love and Mercy’.

And so it is that SPLENDOUR IN THE GRASS has wrapped up for another year. We’ve loved it and hope our audience did too.

We’d like to thank the majority of our patrons for embracing the event in the spirit in which its intended. We’ll see you next year.

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