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Australian Annual Events
In Darwin people tend to drink a few beers resulting in lots of empty beercans. Once a year the Darwinites get creative and build all these empties into boats that they race in the annual Beercan Regatta at Mindil Beach. In the old days before environmental awareness the day used to finish with a seabattle where everyone would smash up eachothers boats and mountains of empty beercans would be scattered all over the ocean.
The Beer Can Regatta is usually held in July / August , and has now diversified into lots of games and watersports, and you can now even use softdrink cans to build your boat!
The Annual Beer Can Regatta will is usually held at Mindil Beach (Gilruth Ave) on in July. The all day event starts at 10am, the Mindil Beach Sunday Market will also be open and entry is by gold coin donation which will go to charity. If you are interested in building a boat from beer or softdrink cans, help for construction can be obtained by contacting the Convenor - email to email@example.com
Race over 3010 km. by solar powered vehicles, in november 2003 the Dutch team won with their Nuna II covering the 3010 km, in only 30 hours and 54minutes beating their old record by one hour and 45 minutes. Australia came second and the U.S. team third.
The Great Australian Dunny Derby is held each year at the
end of September in Winton, Queensland, as part of the great outback festival.
The Dunny Derby involves four people pushing an outhouse on wheels up and down three lengths of the football ground in Winton. At the start of the race the jockey must dash to the loo with his undies down around his ankles then jump aboard. With assistance from the team, the jockey then jumps in and out of the dunny collecting such items as bog rolls, newspapers and even a toilet brush.First to cross the line with all the items is the winner. The competition consists of 20 dunnies, divided into four heats lined up for this prestigious event with a total prize fund of $3,000.
Earth Hour was first held in 2007 in Sydney, Australia when
2.2 million individuals and more than 2,000 businesses turned their lights
off for one hour to take a stand against climate change.
Only a year later and Earth Hour had become a global sustainability movement with more than 50 million people across 35 countries/territories participating. Global landmarks such as the Sydney Harbour Bridge, CN Tower in Toronto, Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, and Rome’s Colosseum, all stood in darkness, as symbols of hope for a cause that grows more urgent by the hour.
It is an international event now, but is started as an Australian event!
Ths event is held in Singleton, NSW, as part of the annual
Country Fest. The inaugural husband dragging race was held in March 2010.
It is the symbolical wife dragging husband out of the pub scenario, and
a follow up on the Wife Carrying Championships that have been held for
This amazing sport sees the wives running over slippery plastic to a bar where their husbands are drinking beer, they grab their respective husbands and then drag them home along the ground and then next they make them do household duties.
The game has some rules, including the husband must act as a dead weight while being pulled, he may not help his wife, the wive must have a cranky look on her face and she is not allowed to kick or punch her husband.
The 2010 winners Emma Mellows and Jacabe Wood took home the fist prize of $1000 cash.
Every year at the end of March the locals of the outback opal mining town of Lightning Ridge get together for the annual Goat Racing Championships. More info...
Be careful crossing the street here in October, the streets of Surfers Paradise fill with the roar of racing car engines that do 300 km/hr on a street circuit. There's heaps of family activity and parties going on tooaround this time. More info...
In the small town of Tully, north Queensland, locals get together once a year for this festival, of which the highlight is the gumboot throwing competition. The person who can throw a size 8 gumboot the greatest distance wins. Tully's other claim to fame is being declared officially the wettest place in Australia with an annual rainfall of up to seven metres.
Earth Hour started in 2007 in Sydney when 2.2 million homes and businesses turned their lights off for one hour to make their stand against climate change. Only a year later and Earth Hour had become a global sustainability movement with more than 50 million people across 35 countries participating and two years later in 2009 hundreds of millions of people took part in the third Earth Hour and the 2010 Earth Hour is expected to be even bigger again. More info....
This is a race with a difference; the Todd river that runs through Alice Springs is at this time of year as dry as a Pommy's bath towel ( Australian expression for very dry) . But with good old Aussie ingenuity the problem has been solved by having boats with no bottoms so people are actually running carrying the boats!
Once a year Darby's nightclub in Darwin used to organize the annual hookers ball where the main condition of entry was that you were dressed up as a hooker, we have just been informed by some Darwin residents that is is now held early December at the Discovery nighclub on Mitchell St. but we are still waiting for some photos....
The Darwin stubby contains a huge 2
litres of beer, and is a popular souvenir for tourists that visit
Darwin in the Northern Territory.
In later years Darwin Stubby drinking competitions were held in
Humpty Doo, a town on the highway from Darwin to Kakadu.
On the first tuesday of November the entire country grinds
to a halt when at 15.20 in the afternoon the whole of Australia focuses
on Melbourne when a group of horses thunder down a 3200 metre stretch
at the Flemington race track in an effort to win the Melbourne Cup and
billions of dollars in gambling money changes hands around the country.
Most Aussies will take at least half the day off to place their bets,
have plenty to drink and just enjoy the excuse to stop work for the day
because of this event that actually only runs for about three and a half
A very popular and easy way of betting on the Cup is the office sweep where everyone just puts in five dollars and gets allocated a horse at random with the money being divided between the winner and the two place getters, this way it does not matter if you don't know anything about horses or the way the betting works and you still get the adrenaline rush of hoping to win and have a great excuse to take time off work to follow the race (with a few drinks of course).
If you are a tourist traveling in Australia do not expect any mechanic to fix your car this afternoon, a huge array of services normally available in a western country will disappear during this day so it is best to plan ahead, stay put and join in the fun.
The Melbourne Cup is a long time tradition, it has been
running since 1861.
A horse still remembered today is Carbine who ( with a "huge" 66 kg. jockey) ran the distance in a record 3 minutes and 28 seconds in 1890.
Still his fame is nothing compared to Phar Lap who, out of 51 races in his career, won 37, one of them the 1931 Melbourne Cup. This horse gained so much fame that after dying in Mexico his heart was preserved and is now held at the National Museum in Canberra, his skeleton in a museum in New Zealand and his stuffed skin in the museum of Victoria in Melbourne.
Every year in August the Barefoot Mudcrab Tying competitions are held in Darwin where contestants have to tie up as many mudcrabs as possible in a certain time while being barefoot in an enclosure with the big nippers.
The Mud Run is a cross country run held at Glenworth Valley
- 60mins North of Sydney, with some natural and often muddy obstacles
to challenge competitors.
The course will traverse the beautiful native forests but of course also, as the name suggests, numerous mudflats and bog-holes will be at the core of this event so don't bring that new set of runners, you might just lose them to the Mud Monster!
The last race saw over 700 people getting incredibly muddy and dirty so it was a great success.
If you would like to join in this run and get totally covered then check out their website for details on the next race.
The 12th Annual Nimbin "Let It Grow!" Mardi Grass
2004 will be held on 1 and 2 May, together with the Hemp Olympics and
the Nimbin Cannabis Cup will be raced around that time too.
The now-legendary HEMP Olympix comprises pothead contests around joint rolling, bong throwing and, for the more physically-minded, a Growers Ironperson competition. For this contestants pit themselves against the odds in outlandish tests of strength such as crawling through lantana tunnels dragging large bags of fertiliser.
Based (very loosely) on the Amsterdam event of the same name, the Nimbin Cannabis Cup is a nice mellow wrap-up to the heightened chaos of the previous few days. A rather broad selection of the best local buds is tasted, toked and tested by a smattering of card-carrying "expert" judges, eventually choosing a winner. If you don't make it as a judge however it doesn't really matter. Just like in Amsterdam, there's so much good pot everywhere that anyone that does make it to judge status is usually too stoned to tell anyway.
Tasmania is the unlikely home to the the nude surfing competition at Clifton Beach on December 13 2003, who would go surfing without a wetsuit in this island just across the water from Antarctica?
Every year in February, penny farthing enthusiasts converge on Evandale, Tasmania, from throughout Australia and overseas to vie for a series of races, held on a triangular circuit in the centre of the village. First held in 1983, based on an event held in Tunbridge, Tasmania, in the 1970’s. Over the past 18 years, Evandale has attracted penny farthing enthusiasts from all states of Australia and from New Zealand, USA, England, Ireland, Holland, Germany, Czech Republic, Sweden, Singapore and Japan. Recognised internationally as the largest annual event in the world devoted to racing antique bicycles. The streets of Evandale, Northern Tasmania, Australia. 20 km south of Launceston, 5km south of Launceston Airport. Evandale is one of the state’s earlier settlements, with buildings dating back to the 1820’s. A penny farthing speed race was also held on the runway of Launceston airport. More info...
The Wood family, who recently moved from Katherine to Darwin, won $250 for killing 303 cane toads filling four rubbish bins. They had been caught over three nights in Katherine by driving around in a troop carrier with the kids hanging over the side with golf clubs and a butterfly net and frozen in friends' fridges before being transported to Pine Creek, 200km south of Darwin. Mr Wood said the family took up cane toad hunting in 2002 after it became too dangerous to spear freshwater prawns because of crocodiles.
In 2005 this nude event is held on 22, 23 and 24 April. Thousands of nude people dance for three days to the tunes of live bands and enjoy body painters, performing artists, good food, drinks and all sorts of things. A security team is present to deal with any nude party goers that may go too excited.
Many Poms are surprised to find that Australians get a day off work on 14 june to celebrate the Queen's birthday! It is pretty amazing considering in England the Poms have to go to work on this day like any other day and most Aussies don't even want the Queen as their head of state! When the referendum was held on Australia becoming a republic many believe that Aussies voted against the republic for fear of losing a public holiday! If this Referendum on 6th November, 1999, had resulted in a 'Yes' vote then Queen Elizabeth II, of the House of Windsor, would have been retrenched as Head of State on the 1st January, 2001, The Centenary Of Federation in Australia.
On 11 November all Australians are meant to honour those who have fallen in World War One with two minutes silence
The Wild West is still alive in Australia, if you are traveling through outback areas in cattle country you might be lucky and get there on the annual rodeo where you can see cowboys riding bucking bulls and horses, we will try to post some approximate dates here later. More info on the Mount Isa rodeo here...
Once a year the men of the town of Weipa, a mining town
in the middle of nowhere up the top of the Cape York peninsula in North
Queensland, get together for a lap around the town in the nude. Though
one of the highlights of the year in Weipa it was fairly unknown in the
rest of the world until the rumour spread that American singer Madonna
might join the race, to many people's disappointment the rumour proved
to be false.
This was not the first false rumour to hit North Queensland, one time the servers of the Port Douglas Tourism website nearly went up in smoke after the world massively logged on when the rumour spread that Monica Lewinsky was holidaying in the town.
When school finishes thousands of teenagers converge on the Gold Coast for some serious partying. In recent years the situation has got out of control a bit, often because of people joining in that look a bit too old to have just finished school and police is keeping a very close watch on things now.
Sexpo is an annual event about anything and everything to do with sex. Even the Australian Taxation Office had a stall here to try and convince sex workers to declare their income and pay GST. To make it even easier for you to visit this event, it is held in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth. Find out when it is on and where on Sexpo.com.au
Smoke-in - Held annually since 2002 in Darwin's
Raintree Park but at varying times so for this year's date check
the website of the Network
Against Prohibition (NAPNT) who organizes this annual event
to protest against the Labor government's drug-house laws and as
an expression of human
The Irwin's family spokesman John Stainton announced in
2007 that 15 November had been declared Steve Irwin Day, the Irwin family
was hoping that everyone would take a day off work, and they hoped that
it would even become a national public holiday, also people were encouraged
to wear khaki to work.
The Queensland Premier Peter Beattie said there were no plans to make November 15 a public holiday, and he doubted Steve himself would have wanted that much fuss. A few people saw it as just another ploy to get more crowds to come to the Australia Zoo festivities and spend money....
A tradition of well over 30 years, the Mardi Gras parade started out as a protest march for gay rights in 1978, while most participants then were arrested it has now become an annual street parade watched by well over half a million people that pack Sydney's streets.
Gay and lesbian party animals fly in from all over the world for the celebrations that carry on for much longer than the actual parade runs. Valuable to the Australian economy as many of the party goers continue to other parts of the country to recover from the hectic festivities in quiter places and see a bit of Australia. Even places like Cairns where council went all-out to close a swingers B&B realize the value of the 'pink dollar' and publish a special 'pink guide to Cairns' to entice gay tourists into a visit.
The annual Sydney to Hobart yacht race starts in Sydney
on 26 December and runs for 630 nautical miles, roundabout 1200 km., to
the Tasmanian capital Hobart. The start is always spectacular and risky
as hundreds of other boats steam along to farewell the racing yachts resulting
in many near misses or the occasional collision.
In 1998 the race was hit by a severe storm and out of the 115 boats, five sank, 66 retired, 55 crewmembers had to be rescued and 6 drowned.
Only hours after the start of the race the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) issued a storm warning, but received no answer when phoning the race committee. They then faxed a warning to the yacht club, which took some time to get through to the organizers. They were also slow to act again to pass the warning on and communicate the severity of the storm, even when the first reports of 75 knot winds started arriving.
The 2004 race was won by the 27 metre $5 million Nicorette in 2 days and 16 hours after bad weather forced half the boats of the 116 strong fleet to abandon the race. This was skipper Ludde Ingval's second victory in this race. The AAPt came in six hours later and Brindabella came third.
Toad Day Out was advocated by politician Shane Knuth and
takes place on the 29th of March and aims to reduce the population of
the invasive Cane Toad.
Toads are captured and taken to be humanely destroyed with prizes awarded for children who find the heaviest toads, and schools which capture the most amount of toads (by weight).
Every year the town of Port Lincoln in South Australia holds
its annual tuna tossing competition. In January 2006 no less than 85 tossers
competed but Steve Hitch, from the Eyre Peninsula, proved to be the biggest
tosser of all when he managed to toss a dead tuna for the considerable
distance of 17.1m and was crowned the 2006 champion, earning himself $7000.
His nearest competitor Martin Tregoning had tossed a 10kg tuna 17.06m, but this was still peanuts compared to the effort of former Olympic hammer thrower Sean Carlin who had proved himself a super tosser in 1998 by tossing the tuna a whopping 37.23m!!!!!!!!!
Every february the tiny town of Riana, near the town of
Penguin in northwest Tasmania fires up for the Undie 500 race. Competing
Tasmaniacs have to run a 400 metre relay race wearing their undies over
their clothing Superman style.
(Due to the local climate a running of the bulls like Weipa as described above seems like a bad idea.)
Port Douglas in north Queensland also runs an Undie 500 every year to raise some money for charity, this one takes place around late January / early February, the 2010 race had to be cancelled because cyclone Olga was expected to make landfall in Port Douglas the afternoon of the race, but it failed to arrive.
Every year in August the world lizard racing championships are held on the famous 'Paroo Track' in Eulo, which is only a one-pub, one-general store town and found 64 km west of Cunnamulla and 887 km west of Brisbane. If you're in the area go and watch the races and send us some pics.
You know of a good annual event? Then contact us!