Outback Events

Tue, 19 Sep 17 - Sat, 23 Sep 17

Winton Outback Festival

 Legendary lineup for Winton’s famous Outback Festival 19 - 23 September 2017

It’s back! Queensland’s heritage township of Winton is pulling out all stops to host an extra special Outback Festival in September 2017.

Perfect for families or anyone who loves the Aussie Outback, the biennial festival will be held in the Queensland school holidays

Outback Festival event co-ordinator Robyn Stephens OAM said this year’s festival would feature a special tribute to the Anzac Centenary. “We’ll have a theme of saluting our unsung heroes,” she said.

The festival’s hilarious signature event, the Quilton Australian Dunny Derby, will top off five days of quirky events, warm Outback hospitality and nightly live entertainment which lures visitors from all over Australia and overseas.

The festival will feature a very special addition, a Sunset Dinner Extravaganza under the Outback stars. 

This spectacular outdoor ANZAC Centenary charity dinner will commemorate the service and sacrifice of Australian servicemen and women.

Australia’s famous Djuki Mala (Chooky Dancers) will kick off the festival on Tuesday night. Hailing from the Galiwinku Community (Elcho Island) in north east Arnhem Land, Djuki Mala became a YouTube sensation after a clip of them performing Zorba The Greek went viral.

Sports fans can test their skills with some grueling sporting challenges including the Outback Century Cycle Challenge – the toughest, flattest cycling event in the Outback.  Participants tackle either a metric (100km) or imperial century (160km) ride on a fully sealed road, starting and finishing in Winton.

Have you got what it takes to win the coveted Outback Iron Man, Iron Woman or Iron Junior titles or compete in the Masters of the Outback? There’s egg throwing and wobble board painting for the kids, whip cracking and True Blue Sports, a test of classic Aussie sporting skills like kicking a footie, darts, bowls, marbles and cow pat discus.

Australia’s Strongest Man, Derek Boyer, will be back to once again be at the festival to impress the crowds with his record breaking strong man challenges. In 2013, Derek broke two Guinness World Record at the festival by leg pressing a 96 tonne road train a distance of 1.5 metres, and shaving a minute of his 2011 record of flipping a car 10 times in under two minutes. Bush poets from across Australia will keep the crowds entertained at a series of breakfasts.

The festival will race to its hilarious conclusion with the “Dunny Derby” which involves more than 20 teams of five building and racing their own “dunny” around an obstacle course from a Le Mans start.

The five-day Outback Festival is held during the Queensland school holidays in Spring, the best time of the year to enjoy the Australian Outback, when the days and nights are mild. Now in its 43rd year (23rd biennial), the Outback Festival was a winner of the Festivals and Events Award at the 2012 Outback Queensland Tourism Awards.

To cater for visitors, Winton will once again host a comfortable tent community, Club Paterson with pre-erected tents and optional breakfasts supplied at very reasonable prices. Winton also offers caravan and motorhome camping, motel and hotel accommodation.

Highlight events include the Quilton Australian Dunny Derby ($5,000 prize money and trophies); Outback Iron Man and Iron Woman ($5,000 prize money and trophies), Outback Iron Juniors, Masters of the Outback ($2,000 in prize money and trophies); Outback Century Cycle Challenge; Sunset Dinner Extravaganza; Opening Night Concert featuring the Northern Territory’s Djuki Mala Dancers; Grand Parade; Bush Poets Breakfasts over three days; nightly music concerts; Derek Boyer, Australia’s Strongest Man will perform strongman challenges; and special activities for the kids including meggsie cart races, teddy bears’ picnic, wobble board painting and skateboarding workshops.

GETTING HERE: Drive the fully sealed Matilda Highway or take a flight, coach or train/coach service.  Packages will once again be available through RACQ and Qld Rail Holidays. New in 2015, join the tag a long tour from Brisbane, stopping at top Outback attractions enroute to Winton. For travel and accommodation options or more information about this unique Aussie event, visit www.outbackfestival.com.au, or follow us on Facebook.

ABOUT WINTON: Winton is located 1,300km from Queensland’s capital Brisbane and has a population of around 900 people. During the Outback Festival, the population swells to around 4,000 people.

It was in Winton that Australia’s unofficial national anthem, Waltzing Matilda was written by AB (Banjo) Paterson and first performed in public at the North Gregory Hotel. Today people can still enjoy a drink at the famous historic pub and visit the modern interactive Waltzing Matilda Centre, the world’s only tourist attraction dedicated to a song.

Winton is the birthplace of Qantas, Australia’s national airline, and home to the Australian Age of Dinosaurs Museum (AAOD) which is located on a dramatic mesa just 24km from Winton. The AAOD is a natural history museum housing the world’s largest collection of Australian dinosaur fossils. Also near Winton is Lark Quarry Conservation Park, a 93 million year old fossilized dinosaur stampede, the only trackway of its kind in the world.

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