CANCELLED: Tara Camel Races to wait out COVID ‘hump’
THE organisers of the Tara Camel Races announced they won’t proceed with the festival in August 2021, opting to wait out the ‘hump’ of Covid-Safe uncertainty.
The festival’s monumental growth and success is the pride of Tara’s small community, with 25,000 attending the 2019 festival.
Last year’s festival was the largest crowd to ever be seen in Tara, with caravanners, campers and day-trippers, swelling the population tenfold to 10,000.
Tara Festival of Culture and Camel Races Festival President Kerry Kelly, promised the camels and all the festival fun will return to Tara sometime in the future year.
“We had to make a call either way about next year and we had to make it quite early because there is major infrastructure works which need to be scheduled at the festival Showgrounds venue next year,” said Mrs Kelly.
“We’re pleased to see the COVID-19 restrictions eased in Queensland, more so since we made our recent decision, but the environment for anyone delivering a large-scale event like ours is still considerably challenged.
“So while our festival is on a break next year, there’ll be plenty happening with infrastructure upgrades and this means that when we do return we’ll have a better venue, with important improvements to things like site power capacity.”
Mrs Kelly said in the meantime the committee will continue to meet, and keep an eye on when the time is right to jump in head first into the next big festival.
“We are completely volunteer run and between us we give thousands of hours to stage the festival, so when we hit go on our festival planning we want to feel confident our investment will pay off and be successful as it has been these past years,” Mrs Kelly said.
“We thank our festival fans, the camels, cameleers and trainers, entertainers, performers, stall holders and our supporting festival partners for their patience while we continue to navigate the uncertainty of these changes.”
Next year would have been the 11th Tara Festival of Cultural and Camel Races, held biennially over the last 22 years.
Organisers encourage visitors to check out their cousin event held next year in the neighbouring town of Miles, with plans going full steam ahead for the Miles Back to the Bush Festival on 9 to 12 September 2021.