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The Midsumma Carnival Scoop | Midsumma Festival eNews 21 Jan


Mick Pacholli
Mick Pachollihttps://tagg.com.au
Mick created TAGG - The Alternative Gig Guide in 1979 with Helmut Katterl, the world's first real Street Magazine. He had been involved with his father's publishing business, Toorak Times and associated publications since 1972.  Mick was also involved in Melbourne's music scene for a number of years opening venues, discovering and managing bands and providing information and support for the industry.        
After a long awaited two years, in just two sleeps time Midsumma Carnival is BACK! We know you haven’t been able to look at Alexandra Gardens without daydreaming about sunny days, picnics and day and night queer entertainment. We feel it too, which is why we cannot WAIT to bring our LGBTQIA+ communities and friends together again for another Carnival to remember.

We’ve jam packed everything you need to know in this Midsumma Carnival bumper edition, including what’s happening on our Stages throughout the day, T Dance line up, and helpful info including the lowdown on our Stalls and Accessibility.

What are you waiting for? Start reading and see you at Midsumma Carnival in your most glittery finest from 11am-10pm, Alexandra Gardens. 


Love, Midsumma

Header image: Midsumma Carnival 2020 by Suzanne Balding


Time to start studying our program and planning your day. Across our Midsumma Carnival Main and Picnic stages expect to be entranced by artists giving you a taster of their Midsumma Festival shows, plus lots of DJs for a bit of pre T Dance boogying. Our Main Stage Daytime lineup will be MC’d by Lou Wall and Geraldine Quinn, and if you’re hanging out for the Dog Show and Lipsync Limelight, you’ll be MC’d by none other than Nic Holas for the Dog Show and Frock Hudson for Lip Sync Limelight.

As usual it will be all fun and games in the Sports Precinct with demonstrations by the experts in queer sports and lots of games to participate in if you’re feeling a little bit Sporty Spice.

Thinking of bringing the fam? Bring the skates or borrow some from the YMCA crew who will be doing FREE lessons at the Skate Park from 12-4pm.

It all kicks off from 11am, with a special Welcome to Country on the Main Stage at 1:40pm.

Image featuring Frock Hudson

Image: Midsumma Carnival 2020 by Suzanne Balding

Image: Midsumma Carnival 2020 by Dean Arcuri

Image: Midsumma Carnival 2020 by Suzanne Balding


When the day turns into night at Midsumma Carnival, the party is only just beginning.  T Dance kicks off from 6pm on both our Main and Picnic Stages with a lineup of DJs, drag performers, dancers, singers (pretty much an array of amazing queer talent who can provide a kicking beat for a boogie).

Hosted by the hilarious Jordan Barr, Aurelia St Clair and Charlie Lewin on the Main Stage and Patrick Dwyer and Laura Trennery from The Pageant on the Picnic Stage.

Masks will definitely be required (and yes that means over mouth and nose) which means you can be whoever you want to be and lose yourself on the outdoor d-floor.  We love a mysterious identity (and Covid Safety).

Image: Midsumma Carnival 2019 by Suzanne Balding


Midsumma continues to work with the State Government to determine the safest way to deliver the event.

The Victorian Government has made masks compulsory at major events with more than 30,000 people. Whilst we anticipate that maximum numbers will be below this number for a lot of the day, at peak times more than 30,000 can be onsite at Carnival at any one time. Therefore Midsumma requires that for the safety of you, other attendees and event staff, that you wear a face-mask when moving about the site (masks can be removed when seated) and to maintain safe social distancing to protect yourself and others around you.

QR codes will be available to check in and please ensure you have your proof of vaccination or medical exemption ready to present if you’ll be entering the bar areas.

Please do not attend should you be presenting any symptoms of COVID-19. In that case please get tested and isolate immediately.

More info: Being COVIDSafe at Midsumma Festival.



Who else has been checking the weather for Midsumma Carnival on Sunday?! It’s not just our stage line up that is going to be hot that’s for sure! We will have professional risk assessors to monitor the weather on the day, but follow these hot tips to be cool:

Wear sunscreen and cover up. You can still make it #fashun

Seek shade under the trees or under our umbrellas. Midsumma will provide umbrellas around the event precinct for the public to use. The City of Melbourne absolutely bans pegging any structures into the ground or placing them close to trees. If you do bring a structure it must be weighted to ensure it is safe in wind gusts, and it cannot be located anywhere that it will block views for other attendees.

Slide on those sunnies and hats

Bring a bottle of water and refill throughout the day at our water stations

Take breaks throughout the day.

Image: Midsumma Carnival 2020 by Suzanne Balding


If you’ve been to Carnival before, you know just how big the precinct is! Take a screenshot of the site map via the link or keep the tab open for easy access on the day. And if you get lost, head away from the river and towards St Kilda Road for our Main Information Tent where we can help you find your way.


Barefoot wines are treating you to a day of wine tasting at Midsumma Carnival on 23 Jan. Meet their team, sip on their Chardonnay, or taste the Rose. Whether you’re on the go, or sipping and celebrating at home – Barefoot has a wine for you.

FAQs: Yes… No BYO Alcohol

Oh hey there, we hear you have a question. There’s no such thing as a silly question. But before you ask us, here are some answers we prepared earlier. We’ve had a lot of questions asking about BYO Alcohol. To confirm, this year Midsumma Carnival is a NO BYO event. Read more info on this and other questions via the link.

Midsumma Carnival 2020 by Suzanne Balding


Take some time out and have a stroll through our Stalls Precinct – the queer market you never knew you needed. We have a feeling there’ll be lots of freebies and activities happening (chill zones, glam tents, selfie stations, craft… just to name a few things).

See our full stalls list A-Z via the link.

Midsumma Carnival 2019 by Suzanne Balding


Midsumma Carnival has something for everybody, including many facilities provided to assist those with special accessibility needs. There is clear directional signage across the site indicating facilities and services.

Some of our access offerings include: accessible drop off/pick up zoneswheelchair access, hearing access and audio describers. We also have access champions on the day to provide one-on-one support.


We mean it when we say your feedback is important to us. Our amazing volunteers will be walking around on the day with surveys on iPads for you, our audiences to tell us how we’re doing.

If you think we can do something better or you’d like to tell us something that we’ve done well, let us know! You can even win a VIP experience for Midsumma Festival 2023, worth $900 just for sharing.

Image: Midsumma Carnival 2020 by Dean Arcuri


Still searching for the perfect Midsumma event? Stop by our Midsumma Carnival Box Office where our friendly ticketing team and vollies can give you the scoop on the best shows for you.

You can even purchase your tix then and there so you won’t get distracted scrolling through other shows and then end up buying nothing because #overwhelming (yes… we see you “leaves-item-in-cart” people).

Image: Midsumma Carnival, 2020 by Dean Arcuri


Refuel at one of the MANY (and we mean many) food trucks throughout the precinct. First course snacks may look like a coffee from Roadshow Coffee with a side of donut from Gippsland Organic Doughnuts. 

Hungry for more? Main course may include a curry from Two Fat Indians or Schnitty Schnitty Bang Bang because who doesn’t love a schnitty.

Cool down and top it off with dessert from 196Below Nitro Ice Cream.


Enjoy a cycle in the sun to Midsumma Carnival without worrying about the safety of your bike with FREE Bike Valet thanks to arevo by RACV. Follow these 3 simple steps for bike peace of mind:

1) Enter the Bike Valet at the Flinders St end of Boathouse Drive (Swipe across for the bike symbol on the map)

2) Download the free arevo app (show arevo staff the app on your phone)

3) Register your details (arevo staff with ipads loaded with T&C/waiver form for riders to sign) and they’ll park your bike for you (ticketing system with rows/column number/letters so it’s easy to locate the bike).


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