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Saturday, June 19, 2021

Float Your Boat festival to light up the lake

Spectacular sea creatures and mythical maritime characters are set to light up Lake Macquarie this month as part of the 2021 Float Your Boat weekend.

A flotilla of illuminated vessels decorated with lights and other glowing elements will cruise the lake across two nights for the festival, heading around the western side on Friday 18 June, then around its eastern edge the following evening.

Lake Macquarie City Council Manager Arts, Culture and Tourism Jacqui Hemsley says the event is one not to be missed.

“Our boaties put an incredible amount of time and effort into making their vessels look really amazing,” Ms Hemsley said.

“Their creations in past years have blown crowds away, so we’re really looking forward to seeing what they come up with this time around.”

This year’s weekend will include a range of shore-based activities, with a Friday night live-site at Toronto Foreshore and community event at Wangi Wangi, and another live-site on Saturday at Warners Bay.

Both the Toronto and Warners Bay events will go from 5 to 9.30pm, featuring live music and entertainment, magic shows, illuminated art installations children’s activities and food trucks.

The Wangi RSL live-site will run from 6 to 9pm and feature live music, creative workshops and a community bonfire.

The eye-popping visuals at the festival will be further enhanced this year, with the council commissioning a trio local artists to bedeck three vessels in themed lighting.

Artist Bliss Cavanagh described her lighting concept as “a magical under-the-sea world brought to light”, including fish, coral and other sea creatures.

“The inspiration for this work is drawn from the natural beauty of the lake and the magical world that lies under the sea,” she said.

“I want to bring this world to light in a fun and colourful way to give joy to the people watching from shore.”

Boats participating in Float Your Boat will be in the running to win a $2,000 People’s Choice Award, a Mayor’s Best Boat Award for vessels 5-10m, and a Mayor’s Best Boat Award for vessels over 10m.

Fans can go in the running to win a $100 gift card by casting a vote for their favourite boat following the weekend’s action.

Go to lakemac.com.au/floatyourboat for more information.

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