Festival tops expectations
THOUSANDS of revellers lined the Top of Town on Saturday afternoon as the Ipswich Festival spilled into Brisbane St for a street party and parade.
The afternoon began with the Ipswich City Square Carnival Capers, followed by the street parade - a procession filled with colourful floats from community groups and businesses from across the city.
After the parade, the crowds merged on the Top of Town for the street party, boasting artists and acts from across the country and the best cuisine Ipswich has to offer.
Ipswich Events Corporation chairman Paul Casos hailed the evening's events as a success.
"I think this would be one of the biggest parades we've done. I'm told the crowds were right up to the top end of Brisbane St," he said.
"We had very fine weather and we thank the support of the community for the festival.
"The thing that pleased me this year is how many people took the theme seriously, which was recycling: Tales of Discarded Treasure."
Ipswich mayor Paul Pisasale said the parade and street party once again proved popular with families.
"This is what the city is about. We are doing all the development but what we do here is about the people," he said.
"Any family would have to pay a lot of money to get that entertainment, and families need something like this to when they are trying to cut back."
Jill Heidke and her eight-year-old granddaughter Hunter watched the parade from among the crowd of thousands and enjoyed every minute of it.
Hunter particularly liked the numerous musical floats treating the crowd to jazz music.
Carmen Wojcicki, of Raceview, took her daughters, who enjoyed some ice cream as they wandered through the street party.
They came to see the parade and couldn't believe the size of the crowd.
Twelve live acts performed on three stages set up on Brisbane St, including indie-pop, folk, Latin, Irish, rock'n'roll tributes to Elvis Presley and the Big-O, and The House of Gaga - Lady Gaga Experience.
The festival wrapped up yesterday with the kids' kingdom event at Springfield's Robelle Domain.