Port Fairy, you were amazing!

Wow! Just… wow!! That was amazing!

The curtain is closing on the 42nd annual Port Fairy Folk Festival and we could not be happier! Beautiful sunshine, smiling crowds and extraordinarily talented artists from around the world – it was a weekend to be remembered for all the right reasons.

Our heartfelt thanks to our army of volunteers who every year turn up in droves to ensure the smooth operation of a very complex event. It simply wouldn’t happen without you.

Our thanks also to the people of Port Fairy who welcome us into their hearts, homes and community for the long weekend. It’s not difficult to see how Port Fairy has been touted as the world’s most liveable small community!

And of course, thank you to YOU, dear Festival-goer, for being a part of the annual Folkie magic. We eagerly look forward to your thoughts and feedback about the 2018 Festival and can’t WAIT to see you back in Port Fairy this time next year.





Stage set for a magnificent Festival!

It’s finally here! Today marks the beginning of the 42nd annual Port Fairy Folk Festival!

And with the sun tipped to shine throughout the weekend, the stage is certainly set for a magnificent Folkie!

To help you get the most of your Festival experience, you can download the free Folkie app. The app not only details the full program, but it also helps you plan and personalise your itinerary so you’ll never miss your favourite performers.

More information about the app here.

Don’t have tickets yet? Great news – there are still a few available. But you’ll need to move quickly!

If you miss out on tickets, don’t despair. Thanks to the support of our friends at Visit Victoria, this year’s FREE Village Program has been substantially bolstered with more music, art and performance at various venues throughout the village.

On behalf of the Port Fairy Folk Festival Committee, we wish you a wonderful Folkie! We can’t wait to see you in Port Fairy!

Our community heart

The Port Fairy Folk Festival is about so much more than great music.

Community is now and always has been at its heart. In the past 20 years alone, the Folkie has returned almost $3.5 million to the local community by way of grants.

Some of the more recent grants have included:

  • $750,000 for Moyne Health Services for its recently completed Primary Health Care Centre
  • $75,000 to the Port Fairy Cricket Club for an indoor training centre
  • $75,000 to the Port Fairy Surf Life Saving Club for a new training facility
  • $18,000 to the local indoor swimming pool, Belfast Aquatics, for solar panels.

There have been countless other smaller grants allocated to local clubs, groups and organisations, including the Friends of St Brigid’s, the Port Fairy Angling Club, a heritage boat project, Port Fairy Winter Weekends, the Men’s Shed, Tarrone Recreation Reserve, the Port Fairy to Warrnambool Rail Trail, the Koroit Irish Festival and the local Cemetery Trust, to name just a few.

Beyond the twice yearly grants program, the Festival also provides significant support for local, not-for-profit organisations who help us bring the event together.

Payments are made to those organisations whose members volunteer their time to assist with such activities as venue cleaning, parking and crowd control, security and more.

In what we consider to be the ultimate ‘win-win’ situation, the Festival has contributed the following amounts to local clubs and groups over the past 20 years:

  • $502,000 for gate security, crowd control and venue cleaning
  • $824,000 for operation of the Shebeen Bar
  • $700,000 for marquee erection and dismantling
  • $321,000 for venue hire for the popular community program.

It’s our way of giving back to the wonderful community of Port Fairy that each year opens its streets, venues and hearts to people from all around the globe for the annual Folkie.

Tickets are still on sale!

Minding your Ps and Qs – Folkie etiquette 101


If you wouldn’t know a Folkie chair if you fell over it or if you’ve never had the pleasure of doing the Folkie shuffle, this quick guide to Festival etiquette is for you.


Go with the flow! We invite you to get in the Port Fairy vibe and just relax. Almost all artists will be performing at least twice during the 2018 program, so there will be opportunity to see your faves if you miss out first time around.

Take a seat. We’ll be offering permanent, auditorium-style seating in Stage 3 at the 2018 Festival. For all other venues, you’re welcome to bring a rug or a chair. But unless you’ve got a note from your mum, we really do prefer you have a traditional ‘Folkie chair’ – the low beach chairs that you see slung across the shoulder of experienced Festival-goers everywhere – as opposed to a throne or step ladder.

Get in the zone. To make sure everyone gets a view, our larger venues will have line-markings to delineate areas that are OK for regular camping chairs, and areas for low, Folkie chairs. To avoid committing the ultimate Folkie faux pas (ie setting up a high chair in the midst of a sea of Folkie chairs), check the zones.

Dance like no one’s watching! We love to see folk up on their feet! But, because gyrating bodies can obstruct the view of seated patrons, we will have designated ‘dance zones’ marked. Dance-friendly venues will be highlighted on your Festival program, so if your feet are getting itchy, check your program to see where you can join other Festival groovers!

Do the shuffle! Between performances, our MCs will invite you to stand up, stretch your limbs and do the Folkie Shuffle! This clever little ritual not only guards against pins and needles (yours), but also ensures there’s room for others to come on in and join the fun.

Share the space. Reserving space for extended periods of time is a definite Folkie no-no (insert frownie face). By all means, pop to the loo, or grab a coffee, but if you plan to be gone for any length of time, please take your chair/rug and belongings with you. Otherwise, you may return to find another family has moved in to claim adverse possession in your absence! Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

Be a good neighbour. And whilst we’re on the topic of territorialism, do be kind to those around you. Try to avoid stepping on limbs (or heads) whilst picking your way through venues. And try not to spread out more than you need to. Manspreading is actively discouraged in Port Fairy!

Be kind to our volunteers. Our volunteers are almost all locals who are passionate about their community and their music. As volunteers, they don’t get paid enough to get yelled at, so think happy thoughts and give them a smile!


The Port Fairy Folk Festival all happens over the long weekend in March. Tickets are on sale right now!

We’re declaring our own war on waste!

Did you know that the majority of single-use coffee cups can’t be recycled?

Here at the Port Fairy Folk Festival, we’re waging our own war on waste! In 2018, we’ll be trialling the use of reusable coffee cups throughout the Festival arena.

Our committee has purchased 500 12oz re-usable, souvenir coffee cups for use at any of the five coffee vendors within the arena. They’ll be easy to spot as they’ll be emblazoned with the Festival brand.

And coffee lovers can rejoice in the fact that they will receive a 50-cent discount each time they refill their souvenir coffee cup!

We’re so committed to this idea that we made it a condition of trading at next year’s Festival that all coffee vendors had to agree to the discount arrangement.

And it will be up to individual vendors as to whether they choose to offer a discount to those who present with other re-usable coffee cups.

So pick up your special souvenir coffee cup at the 2018 Festival and join us in our ongoing war on waste!

Remember – Early Bird tickets end this Friday 8 December!

Camp without the hassle – the Folkie’s new Tent City option!

Finding accommodation during the Folkie need not be intense. Instead, it can be in tents – literally! (Sorry, we couldn’t resist!)

In 2018, Port Fairy’s Consolidated School will be transformed into a fully-equipped tent city just 500 metres from the Festival arena.

This is a brand new accommodation option available to ticket holders only.

Options range from a one-person tent through to tents larger enough to sleep six people.

The best part? You don’t even need to bring all the gear! The basic pricing option includes stretcher beds, mattresses, an LED lantern, regularly serviced toilets and hot showers, use of a small camp kitchen with cool room and car parking.

Bring your own sleeping gear, or book additional extras including sleeping bags, eskies and pretty much everything else you might need for a camping holiday!

Breakfast is even available at an additional charge.

This fabulous initiative is managed by the lovely teachers and families of Port Fairy Consolidated Primary School with the expertise of the Rent A Tent Group.

But remember – you must be a ticketholder for the 2018 Port Fairy Folk Festival to make a booking for the Tent City accommodation.

Bookings available here.

Early Bird tickets for the 2018 Port Fairy Folk Festival are on sale until December 8. Book online via our website today!