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Byron Shire
April 11, 2021

Celebrating 25 years of the Lismore Lantern Parade

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Jyllie Jackson at the launch of Lismore’s 25th Lantern Parade. Photo supplied.

It is a feast of the imagination from the Lismore community and Wednesday saw the launch of the what will be the 25th Lismore Lantern Parade.

‘Imagine – bizarre medieval fayre meets carnivale and goes to the circus. Coming from the dark into the light – this is the Lismore Lantern Parade,’ say organisers.

This years festival will span three days beginning on Friday June 21 with a gala concert at City Hall with the Moorambilla Voices, MaxedOUT Ensemble from Far West NSW and over a hundred young Lismore people presenting works by three emerging Australian composers and Lismore’s own Tilly Jones.

From 10am on Saturday it will be Finland games at the KidsArtFest – with lots of wonderful creative activities for kids of all ages. There will be a retrospective photographic exhibition in the Lismore Regional Gallery and the inaugural Buskers’ Festival throughout the CBD.

The Lantern Parade will then leave Market Street at 5.30pn and wind its glittering way to the Quad and Fredrick’s Car Park for the Fiery Finale – an amazing feast of fire art, lanterns, pyrotechnics and a bonfire before a celebratory firework display.

Finally at dusk on Sunday night, a small flotilla of lantern lit kayaks and canoes will sail down the River from Ballina Bridge to the Winsome Hotel to celebrate the birthplace of the Lantern Parade 25 years ago.

If you are interested in getting head to the Lantern Parade website.

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  1. The Lantern Fest was very disappointing. Even the “big bonfire” was a small camp fire in sensible, non threatening confinement and the fireworks went for all of 40secs.

    Nothing like the first one I saw (2016? 2017?) which was much longer, louder, bigger, with far more imaginative armatures and floats, as well as the many individuals in their own creations.

    This time they were mainly approved groups & schools, very prosaic and poorly executed models, with an unexplained penchant for Alice-in-Wonderland themes.
    The bucket collectors had various Hearts playing cards on their costumes.

    I wonder if some genius in the organising committee decided that co-opting kids and schools would sanitise the greenies, druggies and politics from the evening?

    No Hemp Fairies, Medical Marijauna, Ganja Greenies etc.
    It certainly seemed the epitome of bland & boring respectability utterly uninspiring.

    Even the very few Vikings were lack lustre, no attempt at colour or display, stumbling along – possibly hung-over & stumbling from too /too early quaffing?

    At least the weather was kind, mild evening and clear stars. Pity the moon was way past full but even a big full wouldn’t have made this anything special.


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