Friday, September 28, 2012

Newtown Festival takes the plunge – ‘bottled-water’ free

Almost certainly an ‘urban first’ for Australia, Newtown Festival is to go ‘bottled-water’ free this November.

Building on its eco-festival record (think bio-diesel generators, solar powered stages, and bio-degradable catering products just for starters), the community-run festival has embraced the need to reduce festival waste, and welcomes this opportunity to showcase their ability to provide water to 80,000 festival-goers without the need for 100,000 plastic bottles.

“Newtown’s having a birthday so to celebrate the big ‘1-5-0’ we’ve chosen performers and artists who have a connection to Newtown whether that’s living here now or having lived here in the past or some other unique link” explained Festival Co-Director, Sue Andersen.

“So when you’re dancing till you drop to King Tide or Regular John or rocking out to The Preatures or Collarbones, you’ll be quenching your thirst with FREE tap water from refill stations dotted round Camperdown Memorial Park.”

Unlike many highly priced festivals that are struggling both nationally and internationally to attract crowds , Newtown Festival has been free for more than 30 years and continues to draw crowds of well over 80,000.

“We love that we’re a free festival and that around 33% of festival goers donate gold coins and notes into our buckets at the site entrances,” said Ms Andersen. It’s this money, all 100% of it, that goes back to the Newtown Neighbourhood Centre to provide essential services for the diverse community that makes up Newtown.

“Just imagine what we could provide if 70% of festival goers popped a gold coin in the bucket, or if a few more coins turned into notes!!” exclaimed Ms Andersen.

When asked why Newtown continues to grow whilst some of the major festivals were having a hard time (even Glastonbury is struggling and having 2012 off!), Ms Andersen thought that “being run by the community for the community makes a big difference to the life and sustainability of a festival... and if you join us on Sunday 11 November you’ll see the Newtown community set a new benchmark for festivals when we go bottled-water free!”


Media Contact - for more information, images or interviews please contact:

Sue Andersen, Festival Co-Director, 0427 863 486, or
Cathy Wills, Festival Co-Director, 0412 214 844, or

Media Images: a gallery of high res festival images are available on the Media page

What: Newtown Festival 2012
When: Sunday, 11th November 2012
Where: Camperdown Memorial Rest Park, Newtown
Time: 9.30am – 6.00pm

Further Info: Visit festival website for more information
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