The temperatures have dropped, the winter is upon us, and and it’s time to snuggle up in your favourite beanie. As the winter solstice draws near so does the 9th annual Alice Springs Beanie Festival. It started as festival to celebrate the humble beanie, and it has grown over the past nine years to bring the beanie fame, fashion, and a place in the art world. This year the festival has grown further with the inclusion of beanie artists from Titjikala, a small Aboriginal community 200km south of Alice Springs.

Over the past weeks beanies from Japan, New Zealand and USA, and all around Australia, have arrived in their thousands in preparation for yet another delightful 4 days of beanie madness.

If you are just looking for a footy beanie you might be disappointed, but if you want head gear of warmth and distinction, you’ll be in the right place.

˜Our beanie makers are committed to outdoing each other in terms of design and textile innovation’ said organiser Merran Hughes

Beanie Central
The key event, Beanie Central, will once again be held at Witchetty’s in the Araluen Galleries.

Over 3,000 handmade beanies will be exhibited in a wild and woolly display of colour and texture. Try on beanies with ears, beanies swathed in feathers, goanna beanies. Join the thrill of the chase for the perfect beanie. More than 5,000 people attended Beanie Festival events last year. The prediction is that Beanie Central will be a near sell-out affair.

Dates: Friday 24 June, noon to 5 pm
Saturday 25, Sunday 26 & Monday 27 June 10 am to 5 pm
Venue: Witchetty’s, The Araluen Galleries, Larapinta Drive, Alice Springs.

Special Events at Beanie Central
Free Workshops : Learn to crochet your own beanie (wool and hooks on sale)
1.00 pm Saturday 24 & Sunday 25 June

Desert Spinners : Enjoy free demonstrations of traditional Anangu spinning, basketry and other Aboriginal textiles.
Friday 24 and Saturday 25 June afternoons

Beanie Olympics: See the textile experts vie for the title of ˜Fastest Beanie Maker in the Universe’. A speed crochet event. Last year Joanna Nixon stole the title making a beanie in 13.5 minutes!
3.30 pm Sunday 25 June

Sharing Circles
In partnership with Territory Craft, the Beanie Festival is proud to announce a comprehensive program of textiles workshops. Experts from around Australia will be teaching textiles including crochet, knitting, advanced knitting, felting and basketry. Book early.

Workshop Dates: Friday 24, Saturday 25, Sunday 26 and Monday 27 June
Venue: The Alice Springs Craft Council, The Araluen Cultural Precinct

The 2005 Colourful Yarns Competition
The much loved beanie competition exhibition will be exhibited in the Araluen Galleries. Expect a special contribution from local Aboriginal communities, Titjikala and Ernabella Arts, who have been working on special entries. Intensive workshops were held in Titjikala prior to the festival.

Come and vote in the People’s Choice award, announced on Monday 27 June.

Last year’s winner a local from Alice Springs Jude Mapleson won with ˜A Colourful Bloke’ “ a beanie referencing a Leunig cartoon of a woman knitting herself a man.

Exhibition dates: Saturday 27 July to Sunday 21 August
Venue: The Araluen Galleries

The Family Night Out
The official opening of the Alice Springs Beanie Festival and its associated exhibition:

The ˜2005 Colourful Yarns’ Exhibition
Beanie Exhibitions, Competition Winners announced, food, drinks, beanies for sale and lots of entertainment. Everyone welcome. Last year more than 500 people attended.

Date: Friday 27 June 6 pm to 10 pm
Doors to the gallery open at 7pm
Venue: The Araluen Galleries Courtyard and Foyer

For further information and to arrange interviews please contact:

Co- Directors:
Joanna Nixon 08 8952 2615
Merran Hughes 0424 447736, merranhughes@optusnet.com.au
Contact Merran Hughes for photographs.
www.beaniefest.org

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Artist:

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Gallery: Alice Springs Beanie Festival ,