Energetic dance performances today (August 14, 2023) provided a colourful prelude to the exciting program that awaits visitors to the second International Street Fiesta at Toowoomba’s Queens Park on Saturday, October 28, 2023.

A Fijian folk dance by Sylvia Cakau, a traditional Indian dance by Amutha and tribal belly dancing by Madonna and the Drumdance Belly Dance group offered a glimpse of the Fiesta’s entertainment program that will run from 3 to 8pm in October.

Toowoomba Region Mayor Geoff McDonald today launched the 2023 International Street Fiesta before a welcome and overview from Fiesta organising committee chair and Toowoomba International Multicultural Society president Gitie House OAM.

Mrs House said the Fiesta was a great family outing that celebrated the Region’s rich and diverse cultural heritage. Entry to the Fiesta is free, with food and drinks available to purchase.

“Toowoomba continues to draw new residents from across the world. The Fiesta is a chance for our different cultural groups to showcase their individual customs and heritage through songs and dance,” Mrs House said.

“The multiple award-winning Red Dragon School of Martial Arts will perform the traditional Lion Dance and traditional Dragon Dance with an additional martial arts demonstration.

“Starting from 3pm, the program features non-stop performances by more than 30 cultural groups. Residents can enjoy browsing the laneway stalls and an array of tempting international cuisine into the spring evening. There will be an animal farm and a small charge for children’s rides.

“We encourage families to enjoy seeing the talents and meeting the many different faces that comprise Toowoomba’s modern population. The evening will conclude with fireworks.”

Mayor McDonald praised organisers and sponsors for contributing to one of the Region’s most lively events.

“The Fiesta is a joyous celebration of the talented groups that are proud to share their traditional songs and dance routines with the community,” Mayor McDonald said.

“It’s impossible not to be swept up by the passion of the performers and gain a better appreciation of how important these customs are to individual groups and how much they contribute to our modern identity.”

TRC Environment and Community Services Committee chair Cr James O’Shea said Council was pleased to support TIMS with $25,000 in event sponsorship to help stage another exciting family event.

More information about food and stall applications and how to volunteer is available at the festival website by visiting www.tims.org.au 

The event is supported by the Queensland Government through Multicultural Affairs Queensland, Multicultural Australia and the University of Southern Queensland.

Caption: Performers including Madonna Teitzel (left) with fellow members of Madonna and the Drumdance Belly Dance group Peter Van Vuuren (third from right), Kim Brauer and Philippa Harvey (right) join Fijian folk dancer Sylvia Cakau (second from left) and traditional Indian dancer Amutha Kandasamy (third from left) to launch the 2023 International Street Fiesta with TIMS president Gitie House OAM (centre) and Toowoomba Region Mayor Geoff McDonald.