Council calls on people to make festival a WOW of a time

By March 29, 2019 News

Orange City Council is calling on members of the community to put their hand up to help create and organise next year’s inaugural Way out West festival.

Orange Mayor Reg Kidd said the festival, supporting the LGBTIQ community, may be run similar to events held in Victoria, which attracted up to 25,000 visitors.

“Orange is a wonderful, multicultural, supportive city to live in and I want to showcase that to the rest of Australia,” Cr Kidd said.

“Our festivals attract people with disposable income to spend at local shops, cafes, restaurants and ideally, give them a taste of this beautiful city, which will encourage them to keep coming back.”

It is planned that the WOW Festival would be held in 2020 and would be a multi-day event, which could include a multi venue food and wine trail, similar to Forage in FOOD Week, a dance party or a gala dinner.

“But the possibilities are endless and the final plan is up to you,” Cr Kidd said.

“We want this to be an event put on by the community, for the community.

“That’s why we’ve opened up expressions of interest for people who want to be involved in the management committee.”

The role of the management committee will be to advise Council on the timing and content of the WOW Festival, work in conjunction with Council staff to establish and seek sponsorship for the festival, and coordinate with local businesses for their involvement in the event.

An expression of interest is an informal process and can be made by email to by Wednesday 10 April 2019.

Please include any experience or qualification that would apply to the role as a committee person. Positions on the committee will be limited. The more diverse the experience and qualifications, the more likely the expression of interest will be successful.

People at a wine week festival

Council calls on expression of interest for the organsing committee of the WOW festival


  • Summar says:

    Just so you’re aware, there is already a festival called WOW (Way Out West) Festival run by Casula, its for children.

  • Alan Martin says:

    Hi Reg,
    Re the proposed WOW festival which you have said is a festival supportive of the LGBTIQ community. If this is to be the case then I don’t support such a festival for the following reasons.
    1) By holding such a festival we are condoning this life style
    2) this is not the type of event that I feel comfortable as being a family friendly event
    3) I don’t feel that it is the roll of council to be a catalist in any way or fund in any way this type of event. N.B. my rates and vote go towards electing councilors and running council.
    4) Council should be, as much as possible, focusing on things that bring unity in the community not things that are potentially divisive

    • Council Communications says:

      Alan, thank you for taking the time to contact Council in regards to the proposed Way Out West (WOW) Festival. Council appreciates that you may have personal views in regards to the nature of the festival.

      Firstly, Council aims to be inclusive of all people and all lifestyles, and is not going to judge or discriminate based on the way in which the residents of the Orange Community live their life. Furthermore, Council encourages a complete portfolio of events, all of different natures and intentions, to appeal to the different interests of all members within the Orange Community.

      The content of the festival, including the type and time of the involved events, is yet to be determined. Additionally, the festival aims to attract both interstate and international tourists, many of which may have families (for example, in 2011, there were around 6,300 children living in same-sex couple families), it would be in the best interests of the WOW organising committee to develop events that are family friendly.

      Presently, no funding has been allocated, or promised to be allocated by the Orange City Council for the WOW Festival. Funding has been granted on a Federal level as part of the Building Better Regions Fund. The organising committee will also seek corporate sponsorship for the event, with the aim of the festival to become self-funding within a two to three year period. Furthermore, the WOW Festival organising committee will be a project team of Orange community members who will both organise and conduct the event.

      Council should indeed be focusing on things that bring unity in the community, and an aim of the WOW Festival is to increase social cohesion of the broader Orange community. It is important that we work toward the well-being and sense of belonging of all of Orange’s residents regardless of their attitudes, interests, opinions and values.

Leave a Reply