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Celebrating all cultures

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Celebrating all cultures

A free, annual festival is set to bring the whole Sunshine Coast community together again in food, music, dance and friendship.

A popular celebration is set to return to the Sunshine Coast, allowing the entire community to engage in the many different cultural origins represented here.

Festuri is a free, family-friendly festival promoting the talents, interests and customs of people from culturally and linguistically diverse origins. The festival is at Cotton Tree on September 16 and Beerwah on October 21. Festival president Toria Mason shares her insights.

How and when did Festuri began?
Before being named Festuri, the festival began as a concert program in 1999, featuring students from the Sunshine Coast Intensive English Unit in Nambour, to celebrate and share their traditional culture. From there, it evolved and progressed into a very popular festival at the University of the Sunshine Coast for a few years, after which Sunshine Coast Council became very interested and it became Caloundra Music’s fringe festival. Four years later, Festuri separated from there and has grown to become the very popular Cotton Tree multicultural music and dance festival.

What is the festival all about?
Festuri is a celebration of culture with music, dance, arts and crafts, and more. It is a space where a family of blood relatives and/or like-minded people can come and celebrate their togetherness. The festival promotes social inclusion and helps reduce feelings of isolation in our culturally and linguistically diverse Sunshine Coast community. People of varied cultural backgrounds find a place within the network of this exciting, ethnic and fast-paced festival.

What does the term Festuri mean? Festuri is a hybrid word from many cultures, meaning festival or celebration.

What can festival goers expect?
Festival-goers can expect a fantastic program full of music and dance that is displayed throughout the entire day on two stages. There will be performances by local and international people with diverse cultural heritages, as well as delicious international food, interactive workshops and fun kids’ activities. The Children’s Carnival is set to give kids fun and engagement for the whole day, while parents enjoy the festivities. There is something for everyone at Festuri.

As a multicultural region, how important is it to have these events that celebrate diversity?
Multicultural festivals allow people from diverse cultures to bring their heritage and showcase it to the wider community, as well as use it as a tool to educate their young ones. It assists the local community in embracing the practices of different cultures and the people.

What are you most looking forward to from the 2023 Festuri?
We are looking forward to bringing the world together in one place with all the variety of music, dance, craft and food and sharing in the heritage of so many diverse cultures. Each one has such a unique offering and wonderful display that it is easy to get immersed in them all.

Event details

  • Festuri Cotton Tree – Saturday, September 16, from 10am to 4pm, at Cotton Tree Park, on The Esplanade, Maroochydore.
  • Festuri Hinterland – Saturday, October 21, from 10am to 4pm, at Beerwah Sportsground, 32 Sportsground Drive, Beerwah.

The full program can be seen at festuri.org.au.

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