A huge turnout of festival goers were treated to free world class live entertainment across 20 diverse stages over the past four days at Blues on Broadbeach 2017.
The event showcased a unique brand of festival – offering access to a wide variety of quality restaurants, accommodation, and all the facilities of the Broadbeach CBD. Patrons enjoyed accommodation ranging from five-star hotels to casual camping grounds, and loads of food options, from Woolworths to six-star restaurants. For music fans, Blues on Broadbeach can be either a five-star festival experience, or a relaxed family adventure.
May 21 was the pinnacle of the festival, with international headliners Bonnie Tyler, Slim Jim Phantom and Australian icon Ian Moss performing back to back on the main stage and rocking the massive crowds which surpassed last year’s attendance of 166,000 patrons over the four days. From classic blues artists to more mainstream international headliners, the exceptional line-up kept the entertainment pumping.
“The festival saw so many incredible performances in every corner of the precinct,” said festival director Mark Duckworth.
“The 50th Anniversary celebration of Jimi Hendrix’s albums was unforgettable, the international collaboration of Turner Brown Band featuring Australian blues legend Dom Turner and Sacred Steel artist Nikki D Brown was heavenly, whilst Slim Jim Phantom filled the park with cool swagger. It’s been another great year.”
The festival also had a perfect family-friendly atmosphere, with Queensland Police reporting no incidents in the precinct. The festival streets and parks are ‘no alcohol zones’, creating a comfortable environment, where older visitors feel safe and families have no hesitation attending with children. Rain on Friday did not stop the blues, as the festival had many covered areas to enjoy the fun, with 11 of the 20 stages indoors. Visitors were drawn from intrastate, interstate and overseas to enjoy the fun.
“Although we will not have the exact number of attendees for some time it would be fair to say that the festival was equal in size if not a little larger to the last year’s aggregate numbers of 166,231,” said Jan McCormick, CEO of the Broadbeach Alliance.
“With strong accommodation bookings not only in Broadbeach but across the city, indications are that the number of intrastate, interstate and overseas attendees are up on last year, resulting in a strong economic impact for our city.”
Blues on Broadbeach’s charity partner The Salvation Army were happy with the amount of donations they received, kicking off this year’s Red Shield Appeal in the area. The brand new initiative of ‘tap to donate’ doors launched at the festival worked a treat. Nearly 3000 ‘free’ ponchos were handed out on drizzly Friday to keep the party rocking at the outdoor stages, and patrons who received a poncho were asked to donate to Salvos. While tallies are still being calculated, The Salvation Army applauded the generosity of Festival patrons as the funds raised were beyond their expectations.
Overall, the free festival went off without a hitch, bringing a buzz to the streets and parks, and business to local restaurants, bars and retailers. Visitors enjoyed the choice of a five-star festival experience or a casual family holiday, and the atmosphere was ideal.