The inaugural Caba Creative Carnivale held last Saturday in Cabarita Beach was so well received that the volunteer committee plan to run the community event on an annual basis. Organisers estimate between 1,500 and 2,000 people attended through the course of the day.
Carnivale coordinator, Duke Albada, said, ‘We are stoked and overwhelmed with the huge numbers of people who came, many more than we dreamed of. And the friendly vibe had visitors hanging around for hours. Caba Creative volunteers worked endlessly for the past few months to get the Carnivale organised and it was an amazing job.’
Tweed Mayor Barry Longland opened the Carnivale and enthusiastically proclaimed his support for the Carnivale, local initiatives and his passion for the ‘specialness’ of Cabarita Beach.
The stage was a central gathering and hangout space, with Tom Benditz the MC. Shamaran unleashed the varied music line-up by introducing the seductive sounds of Turkey to an enthusiastic crowd. Other performances included an endearing debut by Alan Kirk’s young son, the grungy beat of Magnetic Drillbits, lyrical thoughts by a Sufi poet of Thomas Keily and the beautiful voice of Devon Plumley.
Studio 44 transformed this area into an artistic wonderland – presenting amazing huge canvasses and metallic fish sculptures. Carnivale ‘central’ offered a lot of different activities. A second area was abuzz with community art and workshops including the production of a shell-mosaic mirror, tie-dyeing and a hand collage. A third area had rows of excited children waiting their turn to get a balloon artwork or their faces painted. There was a wide array of creative stalls. The areas were beautifully tied together with festive Bali flags and romantic full-moon lights.
‘The participation from local business was incredible,’ said Lindy from the Stunned Mullet, who oversaw the business involvement. ‘Over $3000 worth of vouchers was donated for the Ultimate Caba Experience Raffle, the K9 fashion prize and the kids Wing It art making. Other businesses came aboard by donating money to cover organisational costs. Several restaurants had Carnivale specials on the menu. We made a conscious choice not to sell food at the market; instead we asked the Carnivale-goers, locals and visitors alike, to explore our main street, and with huge success.’
Jeremy, a TAFE Events teacher, brought several of his students to join as day volunteers. Their late-evening debrief in the pub was all smiles and enthusiasm about the smooth running, the overwhelmingly positive feedback and the weather which favoured us. Shaun, Caba SLSC barman said, ‘We got absolutely slammed; it is fantastic’. Similar sentiments were shared by the waitresses from the downstairs cafe who were bubbling over in their enthusiasm about how much fun they were having. John from the Beach Pub completely agreed: ‘What a fantastic day – the atmosphere was wonderful. We have to do this more often.’
Check www.facebook.com/CabaCreative for responses from the public and more images.