North West Fest a superb success
Well folks, in three words: It. Went. Off!
From The Bad Influence to Hilltop Hoods, Port Hedland’s inaugural North West Festival on August 18 cranked out the biggest music party this region’s ever seen and the punters were indeed impressed.
A pumping crowd of 3,500 punters filtered through festival gates from early Saturday afternoon, the first instalment setting up a slick tent city on the festival periphery.
Hedland band The Bad Influence, who’d won their rightful spot on the bill less than 24 hours prior through the festival’s local band competition, kicked off with gusto.
Within hours, festivalgoers at the Port Hedland Turf Club oval had also enjoyed San Cisco, Dead Letter Circus and Regurgitator before the three headlining acts settled in for the night.
First up after dark on the towering stage were kings of funky groovin’, The Cat Empire (oh be-have).
As a band, you’d have to know you’re cool when more than one crowd member confesses they’ve come from Adelaide for the gig and another has your band emblem tattooed on their foot.
The Living End then drove the crowd wild, pulling out their three piece brand of brilliance.
Hilltop Hoods capped off the night, making sure that from the back of the crowd, right up to the nosebleed section, the Pilbara got to party.
In the mosh pit, festivalgoer Geoff Ellis (from Karratha band “Vincent Law”, which narrowly missed in the local band stakes to The Bad Influence) was stoked seeing such high profile Australian bands in the Pilbara.
“Hopefully this will be the start of something big and will spur some local talent to pick the guitar or drumsticks up and give it a go themselves,” he said.
“We need more local musicians.”
Down at Gate D on wristband duties, North West Roller Derby president and volunteer Sherri Hughes was impressed with the whole set up.
“Sunset Events didn’t miss a beat right down to the spotless VIP toilets with perfume provided!” she said.
Sunset Events Managing Director and Promoter David Chitty, described the North West Festival’s success as “superb”.
“We are thrilled to have delivered a very successful festival by all accounts, particularly given the scale of the event in its first year in an operationally challenging remote location,” Mr Chitty said.
“A huge thanks to everyone involved, especially the incredible support from our presenting partners, Town of Port Hedland and BHP Billiton along with all our other event stakeholders and sponsors.”
And yes, the North West Fest, she’ll be back next year!