Top 10 things to do around the region

Published: 10 Jul 2019

There is plenty to do around the region this week…Bring the family to Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens for free lantern making workshops that will be showcased at the DBCT Illuminate event next week, meet innovative Melbourne new-media artist Kit Webster at Artspace for a free artist talk and enjoy a fun day out at Queens Park for the NAIDOC Street Parade and Family Day.

1) DBCT Illuminate Free Lantern Making Workshops

July 10 – 14, 10am to 3pm
Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens

Free Lantern making workshops for all the family! School holiday workshops at the Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens. Let your imagination roam and create a lantern to then be showcased at this years DBCT Illuminate event showing from 6-9pm daily from July 22 – 26. NO bookings required, children MUST be accompanied by an adult. For more information call Wanda Bennett: 0407 171 371 or Tracey Johnson: 0418 221 078

2) Mackay City Centre

> Scratch Art Workshop by Margaret Burgess
Wednesday, July 10, 8am – noon at Bluewater Quay
> Smarty’s ACTIVE Squirtz by Smarty’s Fit Food and Fun (2 – 5 years)
Thursday, July 11, 9.30am – 10.15am at Bluewater Quay
> Face-painting and Balloon Twisting by Fascinating Faces & Mr Poppa’s Balloons
Friday, July 12, 10am – noon at Sydney Street Markets

Please note all the above activities are free to participate and don't require bookings. For more information visit:

3) Free Artist Talk

Thursday, July 11, 6pm to 8pm
Artspace Mackay

Meet innovative Melbourne new-media artist Kit Webster! Join Artspace to meet and learn about the work of digital artist Kit Webster while he’s visiting Mackay to install his exhibition, Phaseshift in Gallery Three. At the forefront of digital and spatial experimentation, Kit has become known for his hybrid sculptural forms and immersive environments enhanced by the vivid play of audiovisual multidimensional space. His works frequently feature animations generated through 3D projection-mapping techniques, laser and LED illuminations synchronised with musical composition, shaping a fusion of light and sound through rhythm, colour and geometry. By combining art and design with technology in this way, Webster looks to define a new audiovisual aesthetic. One that is informed by the ever-increasing potential of advanced technologies and ideas that push the boundaries of new media. This is a free event - ages 13+ are encouraged!

4) Holiday crafts

July 11 – 12, 10am – 11.30am
Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens

Come along to the Heritage Gardens Shelter and learn how to make use of a small space to grow a mini kitchen garden!  We will be using recycled plastic bottles to make attractive upside-down plant hangers and learn about complimentary planting. Suitable for children aged 5 – 12 years. Cost: $5 per child.  Parental supervision required. Limited spaces, bookings essential. For more information or to book a spot, please call 4952 7300.

5) Karen Purves Author Visit

> Thursday, July 11, 5.30pm to 6.30pm at Gordon White Library
> Friday, July 12, 10.30am to 11.30am at Dudley Denny City Library

Join Karen Purves as she talks about her latest book, Gratitude Prompts. Born in Brisbane Karen went on an overseas adventure lasting thirty-five years, returning four years ago after her daughter died, to start anew. Her practice of gratitude has seen her through the crests and troughs of life. Gratitude Prompts encourages a daily gratitude practice of reflection and actions. Karen Purves will sign books after her talk. Buy a book at the event or bring your own copy along to be signed.

6) NAIDOC Street Parade and Family Day

Friday, July 12
Queens Park  

March assembles at Macalister Street from 9am for a 10am start. Family Day begins in Queens Park on arrival of Street Parade (about 11am) and runs until around 4pm. All welcome.

7) River Street Twilight Market

Friday, July 12, 4pm  
River Street  

A community night market showcasing local food, farmers and artisan makers. The River Street Twilight Markets provides a beautiful riverside experience for families, couples and singles. Bring a blanket and relax on your Friday night under the stars and by the river. Tune out to the vibes of local music and enjoy a delicious food experience.

8) Indigenous language stamping drop-in activity

Until Sunday, July 14 (10am – 5pm weekdays and 10am – 3pm weekends)
Artspace Mackay

Drop into the gallery during the July holidays because the team are celebrating the United Nations International Year of Indigenous Languages by Drawing with Language. Bring your family and friends to join the fun with art making activities inspired by Yuwibara language of the Mackay region. There’ll be rubber stamping, artists’ book making and drawing activities for all ages. Parental supervision is required, and you can stay for a few minutes or a few hours and visit as many times as you’d like. It’s free and no bookings are required.

9) Greater Whitsunday Farmers’ Market

Every Wednesday, 7am to 11am
Bluewater Quay

Join the Fresh Local Produce Revolution and support our farmers by buying seasonal local produce straight from the farmer.

10) Mackay Grant Workshop

Wednesday, July 17, 5.30pm to 7.45pm
Jubilee Community Centre

Join us for a hands on Grant Workshop! Information provided will focus on how to access our Community and RADF grants programs, the application process, concept development and grant writing hot tips including some examples of successful and not so successful grant applications/sections. Whether you’re a community organisation, sporting club, arts group or community service provider - Everyone is welcome. To secure your spot please RSVP to – limited spots available at some locations.


Mackay Festival of Arts

July 20 - 28
Our iconic Mackay Festival of Arts is going into its 33rd year and with a tremendous program ready to excite all the senses, from exciting new performances to unique tantalizing dining experiences, this is year not to be missed. Check out all the events in the program: G&S Engineering Wine and Food Day, Festival Club, Loose Ends, DBCT Illuminate, Wolfgang's Magical Musical Circus by CIRCA, Courses in Colour, Opera Australia - Madama Butterfly, Friends of the MECC Jazz Brunch, The Local Long Table Farmers Brunch and Fringe Events.