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Festival 2018 day one events

Let’s get this party started.

It’s almost time guys. The Commonwealth Games and Festival 2018 are set to kick off next Wednesday March 4th and it feels like we’ve been waiting a lifetime.

The Festival schedule of entertainment is packed and opening night is sure to set the pace.

Here’s a rundown of what’s on Wednesday.

Main Stage, The Esplanade, Surfers Paradise

Yothu Yindi and the Treaty Project
Kicking off the Festival is this legendary act featuring original members of the band along with some very special guests. The crew will serve up some of their classic hits along as well as brand new material with an electronic twist. Stay for the screening of the Opening Ceremony, starting at 8pm on the Main Stage screen. When: From 7pm to 8pm.

The Cat Empire
Musical geniuses The Cat Empire will take the stage on Wednesday night bringing their many instruments and general love of life to the people. Suitable for the entire family, The Cat Empire are known for their happiness-filled dance tunes so make sure you don’t miss this one. When: From 10.30pm to 11pm

Queensland Music Stage, Surf Pde, Broadbeach

Amy Shark
Gold Coast local Amy Shark has taken the music world by storm of late, so it’s only fitting that she take the stage on opening night of the Commonwealth Games. Her soulful beats will be on display in Broadbeach and it might just be your only chance to catch the songstress for free. When: From 7pm to 8pm

Roundabout Stage, Broadbeach

A combination of physical theatre and acrobatics, RITE is an absolute must see. Running until Sunday the 8th of April, you’ll get a few opportunities but we hear it’s so good you might want to attend more than once. Performers will put their bodies on the line in a fierce display of physicality and power. Can’t wait for this one. When: Wednesday April 4th at 6.30pm and various afternoon/evening times until Sunday April 8th at 10.30pm.

Stay tuned for further Festival 2018 updates.

Words by Kirra Smith

5 free unmissable Festival 2018 events

Museum of the Moon by Luke Jerram
Arboria – Architects of Air
Tide by Claudio Kirac

Did you hear? The Commonwealth Games are here and a billion people are about to descend on the Gold Coast. Regardless of the logistics of that scenario, there’s a chance you might get your lid on international telly so that’s fun.

Perhaps you aren’t into competitive sports (if not, are you even Australian) but never fear, there are MANY other fun things going on and we picked five that are definitely worth braving the crazy for.

Acrobats are superhumans sent from heaven to simultaneously delight and entertain us while also inducing guilt about our daily dog walking exercise regime. We digress. RITE is described as ’10 ferociously committed acrobats putting their bodies on the line’ and there is no way we’re going to miss that. It’s also going to be an electrifying explosion of power and physicality and since alliteration and really strong people are equally welcome in our lives, BRING IT ON.
Find it: Roundabout stage, Broadbeach (various evening shows) – Wednesday 4th April to Sunday 8th April

Museum of the Moon
The moon is coming to the Gold Coast! Well, a seven-metre-wide, floating moon sculpture to be precise. It’s a replica that’s been created from detailed NASA imagery so it may as well be the real moon as far as we’re concerned. Each centimetre of the replica equals five kilometres of the lunar surface and it’s all glowy like the actual moon would be, should you ever get the chance to stand in front of it. You can also learn about the moon and listen to surround sound composition of the moon landings. Cool hey.
Find it: Chinatown, Southport from 10am to 10pm – Wednesday 4th April to Sunday 15th April

Arboria – Architects of Air
First of all, luminarium is the most magical word ever and second of all, there’s one coming to Broadbeach! What is this luminarium? Get excited gang because it’s a walk-in sculpture that’s kind of a maze, kind of a mystical light show and definitely one of the coolest things to ever hit the Gold Coast. There’s rather large domes, crazy colours and people say it’s nothing short of enchanting. We say good luck getting us to leave.
Find it: At Kurrawa Park, Broadbeach from 9am to 5pm – Thursday 5th April to Sunday 15th April

We’ve discussed this previously but repetition is the only way to get your point across (or so Mum used to say). Here’s the deal; two people (who are clearly very dedicated to their craft) are going to perform a show on a sandbar in Currumbin Creek. For 49 hours. Obviously there are a few things to be concerned about – rising tides, hungry sharks, wayward paddleboarders – we can barely contain our excitement. There’ll be theatre, dance and just general death defiance (that last one might be slightly dramatic). What a time.
Find it: Currumbin Creek, the Palm Beach Parklands side from Sunday 8th Apr at 8am — Tuesday 10th April at 10am

Fresh outta NYC comes an incredible art performance where water and the human body collide. In what might be the most terrifying thing we’ve ever heard, a tank will fill with said water with said humans inside. The humans (can’t stop now) must then perform everyday tasks such as reading the paper, making the bed etc. while the water level rises and falls. It’s pure insanity but what a time. The soundtrack is hauntingly beautiful and we’re pretty sure it’s going to one of the best things the Coast has ever seen just quietly.
Find it: Surfers Paradise Beach from Thursday 5th April – Sunday 15th April

Basically it’s a big old, 11-day party and everyone’s invited. We heart the Gold Coast.

Words by Kirra Smith

Bleach* Festival 2018

Bye January, not sure where you went but here we are in the SECOND MONTH OF THE YEAR already. It’s not all bad news though because the further we move into 2018 the closer we get to the epic celebration that will be Bleach* Festival 2018! Hooray.

The huge 18 day program was announced this week and there’ll be 140 productions and events across 31 Gold Coast locations and you better rest up until then because you won’t wanna miss a thing.

Think major musical concerts, huge contemporary dance productions (eek), giant outdoor spectacles, travelling shows on kayaks and even a big old beach sleepover.

‘Spose you want to know exactly what’s on don’t you.

How about the world premiere of outdoor music concert The Spirit of Churaki, inspired by the true story of the Gold Coast’s first surf life saver. Sounds amazing.

Also, there’s a hectic boundary-pushing thing called Home Visit that invites 10 every-day locals to open their private homes to complete strangers for a series of intimate living room performances. Which sounds FABULOUS as long as no one is planning to visit our living room (frantically kicks clothes under chairs).

What else is cool (everything, but limited typing space ya know). The Farm is the Coast’s internationally acclaimed contemporary dance company and they’ll send two of their (very committed) performers to Currumbin Estuary’s sandbar for 49 consecutive hours. So that should be the most incredible thing any of us have ever seen.

There’ll also be plenty of Aussie musicians – Kate Miller-Heidke, Amy Shark and Troy Casser Daley to name and few – and all your favourite local acts too.

How’s that hey.

Stay tuned for more updates as we count down the days to the biggest party the Coast has ever seen.

What a time to be alive.

DATES: Bleach* Festival will run from 29th March to April 15th

Words by Kirra Smith.

Where to eat near the northern Commonwealth Games venues

The Boathouse
The Galley
Manhattan on Hope
Emerald Lakes Golf Club
LakeFront Bistro
Mr PP’s Deli & Rooftop Bar
SoPo Dining Room

Sport watching is a hungry time, particularly when there are 10 events happening in one day and you managed to score tickets to all of them.

So you can make the most of your spectating time (and not starve in the process) we’ve found some of the best restaurants near the major northern Commonwealth games venues.

Coomera Indoor Sports Centre
(gymnastics and netball)

The Boathouse Tavern
A family-friendly bar and grill with all your favourites including burgers, salads, pizza and of course, seafood platters five minutes walk from the sports centre.
Where: 101 Dreamworld Pkwy, Coomera

The Galley
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and with a beautiful deck overlooking the marina, The Galley is the perfect spot to relax, soak up the sunshine and escape the crowds.
Where: 200 Beattie Road, Coomera

Manhattan on Hope
Something a little bit fancy about 10 minutes drive away, Manhattan on Hope is a fine dining venue for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Treat yourself to something special while enjoying views of the Hope Island marina.
Where: Shop 18, 10 Santa Barbara Rd, Hope Island

A short ten-minute drive down the motorway is the Coast’s beloved night market and entertainment venue, NightQuarter. Throughout the Games a ten day festival will showcase street food style restaurants and live music.
Where: 1 Town Centre Drive, Helensvale

Optus Aquatic Centre and Southport Broadwater Parklands
(swimming, diving)

Mr PP’s Deli & Rooftop Bar
A relative newbie on the Southport scene, Mr PP’s offers all the delicious eats, sweet cocktails (and cocktail jugs) and view over the city of SoPo. There’s also a deli downstairs for takeaway goodies and a café next door for exceptional coffee.
Where: 43 Nerang Street, Southport

Randy Wallhole
Bagels, coffee and good vibes are what you’ll find in the heart of Southport at Randy Wallhole. Grab yourself something to eat on the go or head in for breakfast pre-hectic day of cheering on the Aussies.
Where: 4/21 Nind Street, Southport

SoPo Dining Room
Open for lunch and dinner SoPo Dining Room, in Australia Fair, is the perfect central place to stop in for a healthy meal or tasty share plate. They’ve also got frosty cold beer and wine and a fun cocktail menu, if it’s come to that point in the day.
Where: Young St, Australia Fair, Southport

A breakfast and lunch goodie to ensure you’ve got strength to power through the day. From bagels to pork belly, anything you could possibly want can be found at 42fifteen along with exceptional coffee. Back to the bagels, there are nine varieties and we highly recommend every single one.
Where: 9 Davenport St, Southport

Meraki Wholefood Kitchen
Healthy, nourishing foods are always a good idea but particularly when you’ve got a million things to do and need all the energy you can get. Meraki offer exactly that for breakfast and lunch with gluten and dairy free options and vegan goodies. There’s even tasty takeaway raw treats. Get on this one.
Where: 55 Brooke Ave, Southport

Carrara Stadium and Cararra Sports and Leisure Centre
(opening ceremony, closing ceremony, athletics)

RACV Royal Pines Resort
Just around the corner is Royal Pines with a range of restaurants to choose from. For five star eats and stunning views head to Videre, for family friendly Italian fare go with Trattoria Amici, Kalinda is an incredible international buffet and Arakawa is traditional Japanese style eats. No need to go anywhere else really.
Where: Ross Street, Benowa

Emerald Lakes Golf Club
Just across the (extremely busy) road are all the dining choices you could possibly need after a big day of sport watching. They’ve got all the best golf club style eats including salads, steaks and pastas.
Where: Alabaster Drive, Carrara

Althenia Restaurant Bar
Greek dining at it’s finest just a five minute drive from Carrara Stadium. This place is highly recommended for groups (because you can order more) and OMG how good is Greek food (HALLOUMI).
Where: 80/3030 The Boulevard, Emerald Lakes 

LakeFront Bistro
All the European goodies are on offer here for both lunch and dinner with plenty of seafood options. The desserts are out of this world and if we could eat Rhubarb Crumble every single day forever, we would.
Where: Shop 78, 3030 The Boulevard, Emerald Lakes

Words and photos by Kirra Smith

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