Bundaberg’s Agnes and Gary Wone at Vintner’s Secret Vineyard.
Bundaberg’s Agnes and Gary Wone at Vintner’s Secret Vineyard. Gary Hutchison

Crush festival a huge success

THE month-long Crush festival had a fitting finale yesterday afternoon with music, wine and revelry at Vintner's Secret Vineyard in Childers.

Vineyard owner Marion Lethbridge said musicians Treble performed a specially created program as the sun set over the fields.

“Long shafts of sunlight poured over the grapefields. It was a magical ending,” Ms Lethbridge said.

“Everyone was dancing and singing along.”

She said about 80 people travelled from Bundaberg, Hervey Bay, Gladstone and as far away as Perth to take part.

“There has been a good contingent of young people here to view the artwork of artist in resident Sandra Jarrett, and that's what it's all about — spreading the love of art,” Ms Lethbridge said.

Creative Regions director Shelley Pisani said this year's Crush festival had exceeded all expectations, and was a huge boost to tourism.

“The Sydney Travelling Film Festival reported its audiences were up 30% on last year, and the Bundaberg Regional Art Gallery Art Market doubled its attendance,” Ms Pisani said.

“A lot of tourists have started booking in to come back to Bundaberg especially for Crush next year.”

She said new events such as Art On The Grass, which showcased local artists at the Botanic Gardens, had added to the hype.

“It was a great way for local artists to showcase themselves,” she said.

“The Children's Crush Day and the mocktail/cocktail competition were also very popular, and empowered young people to get creative.”

Ms Pisani said next year's Crush would be even bigger, with several conferences booked to coincide with the event..

“We aim to ultimately build a national presence as the arts and cultural hub of regional Queensland,” she said.

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