Culture, environment celebrated at festival

Warren HatelyAugusta Margaret River Times
Wayne Webb and Rachelle Cousins will play a key role in this weekend's festival.
Camera IconWayne Webb and Rachelle Cousins will play a key role in this weekend's festival.

This year’s Aboriginal cultural celebration sets up at Riflebutts tomorrow.

The Undalup Association’s free Bunuru Festival prom-ises a range of fun and activities for families.

It celebrated the hottest of the six seasons in the Aboriginal calendar, often called the “second summer,” organisers said.

Festival event co-ordinator Lisa Chatwin said the Bunuru Festival allowed local Aboriginal people a chance to continue their cultural traditions and respect for the land.

“Indigenous peoples from around the State will be attending to represent their community and connect with the local elders, continuing cultural knowledge-sharing and traditions,” she said.

The festival also features a sharp environmental focus, with Tracy Lansdell running “bee hotel” workshops to highlight the critical importance of the insects to the region’s environment.

The day features craft activities, food and vendor stalls, music workshops, and grassroots entertainment, and is smoke and alcohol-free to promote healthy lifestyles.

Tamara Jarrahmarri, of Nyul Nyul country in the Kimberley, is hosting the event and will run drumming circle workshops throughout the day.

Festival director Rachelle Cousins said artists including Downsyde, Struggling Kings and Billy Woodley would play during the festival, which starts at 1pm and continues into the night.

Bunuru will also see the launch of a local tribute tree project, developed by Georgina Kelly on behalf of the wider community.

Ms Kelly told the Times she wanted children and families to write short love letters to the natural world, which would be affixed to a mock tree, fashioned by Cowaramup Men’s Shed.

Ms Kelly will look for a permanent site for the project after the festival.

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