Council reveals big changes to Ipswich Festival
A PARKLAND event village will become the centrepiece of revised Ipswich Festival that will run across four days in April.
The historic two-week event has been consolidated to one weekend from April 11 to 14, with Ipswich City Council hoping it will lure more people to the region.
The annual Mayor's Festival Ball is no more, but popular events such as the Parade of Light, Fire on the River, Jazz and Blues, Art Awards, Unmasked and honk! vehicle display will continue.
"It's going to be a fantastic festival of arts culture and music celebrating everything about Ipswich," administrator Greg Chemello said.
The council will fence Timothy Molony Park across from St Mary's Church and transform it into a village hub; with stages and entertainment.
"The classic events of Ipswich festival will be held," he said.
"The key ones are still there and they're the ones that are most well attended and the ones that I think truly represent the arts culture and music of the city.
"The council really have had a good look at the events and the history of the events."
Mr Chemello said the shortening of the festival from two weeks to one weekend would define the event and allow it to be marketed.
By creating a hub at the parkland, the council will better measure attendance in an effort to secure funds from Tourism and Events Queensland.
"Modern festivals really are consolidated around a core hub as opposed to spread across," Mr Chemello said.
"It's a must more efficient and effective way of delivering a festival."
The council has taken over the running of the event for the first time in 17 years.
The council expects about 25,000 visitors, some from outside the region, will attend this year's revised schedule.
Mr Chemello said the cost of the event was not a factor in shortening the event, but instead it was for "better profiling and marketing".