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5 June, 2021

Culture on display

Ticketed events at the Cooktown and Cape York Expo 2021 – The Rising Tide are close to selling out, but there is still plenty of accommodation available for those wanting to take advantage of 10 days and nights of free events commencing June 11.

By Peter McCullagh

First Nations arts and culture will be on display during the Cooktown Discovery Festival’s Captain Cook landing re-enactment.

Expo Creative Director Vanessa Gillen said there were almost 50 cabin-style tents still available in the Tent City and space for camping and vehicles at the RV ground.

“The line-up of free entertainment is extraordinary with headline acts Busby Marou and Troy Cassar-Daley taking to the stage on June 12, while people are rushing to buy tickets for the unique opportunity to snorkel at Cooktown’s reefs from a tall ship,” she said.

“Cooktown is the closest mainland to the Great Barrier Reef. However, commercial snorkelling tours do not operate here so this is a once in a lifetime chance to see a different part of the world’s largest reef with the Coral Trekker.

“The magnificent Derwent Hunter will offer sailing trips around the mouth of the Endeavour River each day and passengers on the tall ship will learn about the maritime heritage of the local First Nations people.

“Cooktown and Cape York Expo is a great opportunity to experience diverse First Nations culture through music, performance, art and numerous cultural workshops and demonstrations across the 10 days.

“Cooktown’s Reconciliation Rocks precinct where Australia’s first recorded act of reconciliation took place in 1770 between James Cook and a Waymburr Warra Elder will be officially opened on June 11.

“Other highlights include Cape York and Torres Strait Islander art at the Nguumbar Nhaama Exhibition, the Endeavour River creation story being performed in Warrma and free workshops in music and art.

“The three day Cape York Dynamic Business Symposium commencing June 14 has high-calibre speakers from The Cairns Institute discussing business resilience in the wake of the pandemic.

“The Discovery Festival on June 18 – 20, is the finale with the much-loved Captain Cook’s Landing Re-enactment and a re-enactment of a gold delivery to the bank.”

Four Legacy Projects will be revealed as part of the celebrations after Cook Shire Council received $5,455,000 in Commonwealth Community Development Grants.

The $1.2 million Reconciliation Rocks Precinct Development, the site of Australia’s first recorded act of reconciliation and the $575,000 Waalmbal Birri Cultural Centre have opened. Work is almost complete on a $1.98 million redevelopment of the Botanic Gardens and has started on the $1.7 million Gamaay Dreaming Track Development.

Cooktown and Cape York Expo 2021 is proudly supported by the Australian and Queensland Governments and Cook Shire Council.


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