Eat, Laugh, Play and Stay at the 2015 Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers: September 18-27

Josh Pyke and the Toowoomba Concert Orchestra
Multi-award winning floral design artist Bart Hassam
Chelsea Flower Show award winner, gardening guru Charlie Albone
Pseudo Echo, The Audreys, The Beautiful Girls, Taxiride
Ben Wright Smith, Thelma Plum, Meg Mac, The Preatures, The Boys in the Band, Nathaniel
Culture to Couture
Celebrity chef & author Fast Ed and Monica Topliss
20 cellar doors, Talking Pubs and Bite & Brews Lane
And hundreds of thousands of flowers!

Prepare your petals, ready your ears and cleanse your palates … it’s Carnival time!

From September 18 to 27, the colour, sounds, flavours, laughs and adventures of the 2015 Toowoomba Carnival will hit full bloom in a stunning 10-day celebration! There’ll be breathtaking moments, flavour-filled bites, surprising adventures, inspired sights, a star-studded lineup, sounds that ignite, catwalk colour and delicious nights.

And the perfect canvas for this most delicious, funniest, fashionable, floweriest Carnival ever? The thousands of blooming flowers that every Spring carpet the city that sits atop the range high above Brisbane, the result of months of loving care by gardeners and volunteers, a love handed down over 66 colourful years. With a theme of EAT, LAUGH, PLAY, STAY, the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers has defied drought and flood to grow bigger, brighter and more colourful each year, attracting tourists from Queensland, interstate and internationally. It is the longest-running floral event of its kind in Australia and is rightly no longer just famous as the premiere celebration of flowers, but a cultural event for food, fashion, wine, culture, entertainment and all things Spring.

The just unveiled program features more than 50 unique events and experiences of international headline names, spectacular gardens, colours of the rainbow, tastes of the region, food and wine events, high fashion, intriguing adventures and a marquee musical lineup. Bringing serious floral kudos to the 2015 Carnival is Chelsea Flower Show award winner and gardening guru and Selling Houses Australia presenter Charlie Albone and four-time Australian Interflora Florist of the year Bart Hassam. Several celebrity chefs will also be hitting the stage, including Monica Topliss and Fast Ed from Better Homes & Gardens.

Musically, the program is almost as stunning as the blooms – ARIA Award-winning folk rockers, The Audreys, join an all-star list that features national and internationally acclaimed acts like The Beautiful Girls, Taxiride and Josh Pyke, who will be combining his crooning talents with the Toowoomba Concert Orchestra. For the kids, Hoot & Hootabelle will be coming to town for a very special performance!

Families, creative types, music fans, food lovers, flower fans, fashionistas, wine connoisseurs and beer drinkers alike will all find something on the program to excite, whether for a day or a week-long Spring break. There’s the best produce in the region at the Ergon Energy Flower, Food & Wine Festival, and the iconic Floral Parade which winds through the city and of course, the splendour of the September garden tours. Four private Exhibition Gardens have been selected for tours in 2015, each an exercise in dedication and a multi-sensory experience for guests.

Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio said the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers was Australia’s longest running horticultural event for good reason – because, like a good garden, it continued to evolve and nurture new elements, new areas and new experiences, bringing fresh colour every year. “The 2015 program is one of the most exciting programs we have ever staged, focussed around our key themes of Eat, Laugh, Play and Stay,” Mayor Antonio said.

Last year, of the 112,000 Carnival goers, some 44,005 were from outside our region! With an economic return in the vicinity of almost $30 million, Carnival is a major economic driver for our city and our region.”

The program perfectly merges incredible local and national talent both in the garden and on the stage and showcases the wonderful local produce we have on offer in the region. The event once again successfully combines fashion with gardens, music with food; and shines the light on the paddock to plate movement.”

Last year’s popular Gala Dinner returns for the second year on Thursday 17, featuring the best Southern Queensland Country produce in a four course degustation under the stars in Queens Park’s beautiful garden.

Toowoomba is a city steeped in tradition, yet bold with ambition, and the Carnival is an event of which we are all immensely proud. It represents 66 years of pure joy.”

Heritage Bank General Manager Marketing Jane Calder said the Live Concert Series read more like a music festival than any other year.

What a coup to have Josh Pyke perform here in Toowoomba with our own Concert Orchestra! And the national names keep coming with The Audreys and The Beautiful Girls, Pseudo Echo and Taxiride to just mention a few. It’s such an exciting time to be in Toowoomba, we can’t wait to hear what Carnival sounds like this year,” she said.

The Heritage Bank Live Concert Series program!!
Friday, September 1:
4.30pm Ben Wright Smith
6.00pm Thelma Plum
7.30pm Meg Mac
9.00pm The Preatures

Saturday, September 19:
5.30pm Pseudo Echo
7pm Taxiride
8.30pm The Boys in the Band

Sunday, September 21:
12.30pm The Audreys
6.00pm The Beautiful Girls
7.45pm Josh Pyke and the Toowoomba Orchestra

The Florals, Flowers & Gardens:
o Grand Central Floral Parade
o The Chronicle Garden Competition
o Fresh Flower Market
o Changing Blooms
o Ready, Steady, Snip! floral arrangement competition: Better Homes & Gardens’ Fast Ed
o The Garden Space demonstrations: Selling Houses Australia’s Charlie Albone, 1) The Chelsea Flower Show, 2) My favourite gardens from around the world, 3) Tips and tricks for a successful garden
o The Chronicle Exhibitions Gardens self-guided tour: Ron & Val Peachey, Sue Hawkins, Marj & Philip Martin, and Mark & Ann O’Brien
o Parkland Experience: Picnic Point, Queens Park, Laurel Bank Park
o Garden Tours: Morning Gardens Galore, Afternoon Garden Lovers, Full Day Grand Parade & Garden, Colours of Spring,
o Ikebana Exhibition: Toowoomba Ikebana Group floral arrangements
o St Patrick’s Cathedral Floral Festival
o Brindabella Rhododendron & Rose Festival: Brindabella Country Gardens
o Harrow Homestead and Garden
o Spring Orchid Show: Toowoomba Orchid Society
o Bromeliad Show
o Toowoomba Clivia Show: Toowoomba Clivia Society
o ‘Nosti’ Spring Show: Native Orchid Society of Toowoomba
o St Luke’s Flower & Music Festival: Toowoomba Floral Art Group
o St David’s on Display: St David’s Presbyterian Women’s Association
o Toowoomba Bonsai Group Annual Show
o Hanging Basket Display: Cobb + Co Museum
o Interflora Floral Design Competition
o Hop On, Hop Off Garden Shuttle
o The Play Space: Kids in the Garden and Farmer Rob Workshops

· The Food & Wine, Regional Produce:
o Regional produce flavours – think Banyard Birds quail, Tillari Trotters pork belly, Killarney eye fillet, TJ & RM Dunn and Wickham Farms vegetables, Hampton Blue and Wrenco berries, Lerinda apples, Apthorpe rhubarb, Symara Organic Farm herbs, Hampton Blue jams, Bunnyconnellen Olive Grove & Vineyard products, Mother Meg’s biscuits
o Better Homes and Gardens’ Fast Ed
o Monica Topliss
o Bites & Brews Lane
o City Golf Club: Executive Chef Ryan McBurney
o The Play Space: Kids in the Kitchen workshops
o Tastes of the Region: The Angel Café, Rendezvous Café, City Golf Club
o Gala Dinner
o Farm to Plate Space demonstrations
o Talking Pubs Tour
o Progressive Food and Wine Tour: Inbound Restaurant, Encores
o Foodie’s Delight Package
o Paddock to Plate Tour: Local growers in Hampton
o Anthorpe Farm Market Place
o The Woolshed at Jondaryan: Woolshed Café Restaurant and Damper Hut
o Dinner at Sauce

· The Fashion and Arts:
o Culture to Couture Space: fashion show run by Caroline Taylor-Smith
o Handmade in Country Market
o Woodcrafters
o Pop-up Paint-Along

· The Music:
o Ben Wright Smith
o Thelma Plum
o Meg Mac
o The Preatures
o Pseudo Echo
o Taxiride
o The Boys in the Band
o The Audreys
o The Beautiful Girls
o Josh Pyke and the Toowoomba Concert Orchestra
o Ayla
o The Seven Ups
o Babaganouj
o Free Loves
o The Space Cowboy
o Odd Mob
o Fireworks and laser light show
o Nathaniel Willemse
o The Toowoomba Vocal Ensemble
o Women in Harmony
o The Jim Miller Big Band
o Divas in the Park
o Double Delight: Armonico
o JB’s presents The Wonder Years: Chapter III, The Beauman, 12×5 Unlimited
o Empire Theatre: Bell Shakespeare’s Hamelt, The Cowgirl and The Showgirl, Johhny Cash the Concert
o Kid’s Day Out: ABC’s Hoot & Hootabelle

· The Carnival:
o Carnival Classic Car Awards
o A Bloomin’ Scary Night at the Inn
o Teapot Extravaganza
o Cobb & Co. Museum: National Carriage Collection
o Diesel Train rides to Spring Bluff: Spring Bluff Gardens
o Steam Train Tour (Full day): Australian Railway Historical Society, Bris – Toowoomba, Artisan Pizza & Sandwich
o Silver Bullet Express Tour (Full day): Lockyer Valley – Spring Bluff – Toowoomba, Inbound Restaurant

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