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Cape York News, Issue #006 -- Events 2013, Wet Season and Dengue Updates, Book Updates
April 08, 2013

Hi everyone,

Back to work after the Easter break :-)

The Wet has been very poor this year, but at least now we have a rainy week ahead.

But the main reason for this newsletter is that it is time to send you this year's events.


In This Issue

• This Year's Events

• Wet Season and Road Update

• Dengue Update

• Book Updates



Time to send you this year's events as all the organisers have finally decided on their dates and details (you would think that happens sooner but not always up here!).


Cairns Blues Festival, (07) 4057 9347, Saturday 11. May 2013 - on Fitzroy Island, about 50 min ferry trip from Cairns. Adults $60, Concession $55 (pensioners and students – proof of ID required), youth (14-17yo) $30 (proof of ID required), 13 years and under FREE (must be accompanied by a responsible adult). Ferry tickets ($64 per person) and accommodation on top of that (resort, camping). Day trip possible, many ferries.

Caravan, Camping and Boating Expo, (07) 4634 7288, 1800 671 588, Friday 31. May - Sunday 2. June 2013 (Fri-Sat 9am–5pm, Sunday 9am–4pm), at the Cairns Showgrounds. Adults $10, seniors $8, children free with an adult.

Festival of the Knob, - (07) 4055 7804, Saturday 1. June 2013, (10am-5pm), at the parklands in Wattle Street, Yorkeys Knob - one of Cairns' northern beaches. This year's theme is "Rock around the Knob" and it's the 9th festival. Entertainers, stalls, food, crowning of the King and Queen of the Knob etc. Admission FREE.

Cairns Show, (07) 4042 6699, Monday 17. - Wednesday 19. July 2013 (9am-9pm), at Cairns Showgrounds. Entrance adult $18, concession $13, child $8, family $40 (two adults, two children, additional child $8). Amusement rides, displays and exhibitions, livestock, competitions, the usual 'show day' much like in other Australian cities.

Cairns Cup Carnival, (07) 4054 1203, Saturday 10. - Sunday 11. August 2013, in Cairns Jockey Club, Cannon Park Racecourse, 585-615 Mulgrave Rd, Woree. Admission $20, concession $10.

Carma Tropical Wave Multicultural Festival, 0415 145 091, 0410 469 272, Saturday 21. Sept 2013 (10am-10pm), in Fogarty Park on the Esplanade. Traditional cuisine, arts and crafts, music and dance performances from more than 40 different European, Asian, Pacific and South American cultures. Admission FREE.

Cairns Festival, (07) 4044 3594, Saturday 24. August – Sunday 1. September 2013, consists of many different events such as street carnivals, music concerts, art exhibitions, circus, cabaret, theatre and film festivals, and of course street markets and food stalls. Some FREE some may cost.


Port Douglas Carnivale, (07) 4084 0044, Friday 17. - Sunday 26. May 2013 - entertainment, cuisine, arts and sports events over the 10 day festival. Some FREE some may cost.

Porttoberfest, (07) 4099 4540, Saturday 26. October 2013, at Lure Restaurant and the Port Douglas Marina. Beer, dancing girls and festivities at Port's official beer festival since 2007.

Great Barrier Reef Marathon, (07) 4099 4540, Sunday 3. November 2013. Free to watch, admission prices for runners between $25 and $210 depending on the running distance.


Cooktown Discovery Festival, Bicentennial Park, (07) 4069 6861, Friday 7. - Monday 10. June 2013 (Queen's Birthday weekend). This festival celebrates the arrival of Captain James Cook at his landing point in what now is the Bicentennial Park. There’s also a dress parade with prizes for best dresses, a garden party, markets, indigenous workshops, bush tucker food stalls, fireworks and more. Admission free but donations welcome.

Cooktown Show, (07) 4069 5051, (07) 4069 5444, Friday 2. - Saturday 3. August 2013. Rides, amusement, entertainment, kids activities, competitions, markets and food stalls. Gold coin donation.


Mareeba Rodeo, (07) 4092 1583, Saturday 13. - Sunday 14. July 2013, Kerribee Park, Mareeba. Bull rides, beaut ute muster, beef cattle show, agricultural show exhibition and various activities for all ages through the weekend. Admission day passes (adult $17-30, child $6-10, aged pensioner $11-15), weekend passes (adult $40, child $15, aged pensioner $25, family $75).

Mareeba Rodeo Festival, (07) 4092 1583, Saturday 29. June – Sunday 14. July 2013, two weeks of competitions, concerts, a ball, an art show, and sports activities including golf, bowls, tennis and others. Some free some may cost.

Mareeba Multicultural Festival, 0418 770 095, Saturday 24. August 2013, (9.30am-6pm), Arnold Park, Mareeba. Costume parade, entertainment, art and craft stands, traditional food stalls. Dance performances by Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, Greek, Spanish, Italian, Philippine, Papua New Guinea and Australian performers. Admission FREE.

Chillagoe Festival, 0403 603 983 Friday 19 - Saturday 20 July 2013, at Chillagoe Town Hall. Friday: arts and crafts exhibition with wine and cheese. Saturday: Markets (handicrafts, produce and food), bush poetry in the morning, and country music from midday onwards.

Chillagoe Rodeo, (07) 4094 7119, Saturday 11. - Sunday 12. May 2013. A weekend of bull rides, music, markets, displays, food and drinks. Premises licensed all weekend.

Wheelbarrow Race, 0427 673 954, Friday 17. - Sunday 19. May 2013, Fundraising teams race wheelbarrows from Mareeba to Chillagoe. Friday: Mareeba to Dimbulah. Saturday: Dimbulah to Almaden. Sunday: Almaden to Chillagoe.


Laura Dance Festival, 0438 952 263, Friday 21. - Sunday 23. June 2013 (8am-8pm), Laura Festival Ground, Peninsula Developmental Road, 15km south of Laura. The largest indigenous festival in Australia with people from at least 20 different communities (from Cape York and elsewhere) gathering to share their culture in form of traditional dance performances, cultural workshops and displays, entertainment and art for sale as well as exhibition. Alcohol free event. Adult $150, concession $90, Aboriginal Cape York locals $60, Sunday only $50, Sunday only Aboriginal Cape York locals $20, children under 16 years FREE. Early bird special until 30. April: Adult $120, concession $45, Aboriginal Cape York locals $45, Sunday only $40, Sunday only Cape York locals $15.

Laura Rodeo and Horse Races, (07) 4092 2019 or (07) 4091 1511, the following weekend, Friday 28. - Sunday 30. June 2013, Laura Rodeo Grounds. Friday: horse sports, Saturday: races, Sunday: rodeo. Entertainment, food stalls, licensed bar, camping with amenities. Admission $15-35 depending on what you want to attend.


Torres Strait Cultural Festival, (07) 4069 1336, in September every second year (unfortunately not this year - 2014, 2016 etc; dates for 2014 not confirmed yet). Along with Cooktown and Laura Festivals, this is one of Cape York's three most spectacular events. Torres Strait islanders are different from Aboriginal people, and this is an excellent opportunity to learn about their culture. Admission FREE.

Torres Strait Music Festival, (07) 4069 1336, 20-22. September 2013. Admission FREE, (or could be $5 they said).

The above is an example on how much detail you get about EVERYTHING in the Destination Guide (and it's all updated yearly).


My prediction in the last newsletter didn't turn out entirely true.

Once the ex-Cyclone Oswald had drifted south to flood south eastern Queensland, north Queensland's skies were sunny again, the Peninsula Developmental Road road re-opened and stayed so for quite a while, leaving us all to wonder again where the Wet Season was.

The Wet Season has been poor ever since, and the main road up is all open at the moment - quite unusual this time of the year.

But we are predicted rains for the coming week, so that may well change quickly.

While April used to be the month when the main road north started to open, in a couple of later years we have had some very late openings, one as bad as early June. So it is still way too early to say that the road won't close again before the start of the Dry Season.


Since the last time that I mentioned the current dengue outbreaks, Cairns has gone from 23 to 84 cases, and Port Douglas has joined the club with 13 cases so far.

There is nothing to worry about for you as a traveller. I have spent a fair bit of time in north Cairns lately, and was in Port Douglas as the outbreak started. People live normal lives, go out enjoying themselves, I am sure not every one is covered in mozzy spray.
By the time you get here the outbreaks may be out as the authorities are of course working on stopping them. Even if they are not out it would be very unlikely that you'd get dengue fever on your short stay while 99.9% of people who live here haven't.

Just remember to use the repellent and you'll be fine.


There have been small changes made to the Destination Guide, about Port Douglas, Mossman Gorge, Low Isles and Kuranda. They are not big enough to change any of your plans (so I decided not to bother every book owner by sending the newest version this time), but if you are a book owner and want the newest version, please contact me and I will send it to you (I do have the list of book owners).


I really appreciate any kind of feedback on the guide book.

Please let me know if you enjoyed it while planning before the trip, and while using the information once on the trip.

If you get any questions about anything, please feel welcome to contact me.

That's all for this time - happy planning, and, till the next newsletter if I don't hear from you.

Have a great day :-)


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