Welcome to the Portland Upwelling Festival
A celebration of the natural wonders brought to the town of Portland by the Bonney Upwelling.
The Bonney Upwelling is the epic natural ocean occurrence that powers a 7 month ( November – May ) feeding frenzy of marine animals, supporting an incredibly rich ecological food web. The Upwelling is at its greatest off the coast of Portland and is the corner stone of our lucrative fishing and tourism industries.
Presented by the Upwelling Festival Committee Inc. The Upwelling Festival is a free one day event that brings the community and visitors together to celebrate what is unique about our beautiful coastal environment in Portland Victoria.
Held on the first Saturday in November each year there is music, market stalls, whale boat racing, street parade,blessing of the cross, just to name some of the days activities. This event is free for all to attend and starts at 7-30 am with Lions & Rotary holding breakfast at Henty Beach
6-30 am 3-Bays Running Festival ULTRA Marathon Starts
7-30 am Free breakfast at the trawler wharf by the Rotary & Lions clubs of Portland Bay
8-30 am Blessing of the Cross Trawler Wharf
The tradition of “blessing the fleet” dates back many centuries, to the Mediterranean. Proudly supported by the Mission to Seafarers. The blessing ceremony is at 8-30 followed by the competitive swimming for the cross.
9 am Signal Fire on Foreshore
This years festival will include a signal fire on the foreshore. Representative of the “signal fires” used by the Gunditjamara to signal the presence of a whale washed up on the shore, the various clans would gather and feast on the whale. today the signal fire is interpreted as an invitation to attend the festival in a celebration of the continuing connection of the community to this Gunditjamara tradition and the Upwelling.
9 am – 5 pm Market Stalls – Bentinick Street lawns and Henty Beach
This year there will be over 100 market stalls selling a huge array of interesting products
9 am – 5 pm Museum Victoria Marine Display Located on the foreshore lawns
Museums Victoria will offer a unique opportunity to investigate the museum specimens first hand. The hands on stall will allow you to see real marine fossils,extraordinary shells, taxidermy animal specimens and view unique Museum Victoria photos and video footage of the basking shark caught of the Portland coast in June 2015.
10 am Street Parade Bentinick Street
This not to be missed event is a highlight of the Festival, which sees Bentinick Street filled with floats from various community groups, schools and more. The road will be closed from 8-30 am till noon. The parade features the Call of the Sea at Henty Beach after the parade. Everyone is invited to participate
10 am and 2 pm Sand- sphere sculpting workshop
People of all ages are invited to participate in free sand-sphere sculpting workshops which will be conducted by Portland sculptor Andrew Walsh. Located on the foreshore the workshops will be held at 10 am & 2 pm. They are free to participate in but there will be a materials charge if you wish to keep your sculpture.
10-30 Call to the Sea.
The Upwelling of voices symbolising the natural upwelling which occurs of Portland’s Southern coastline.
11-15 am Teleah Evans Lawn Stage
Teleah is a local singer/ guitarist performing acoustic covers from a broad range of era and genre
11-15 am Ishor Gurung Beach Stage
Ish is a progressive finger style guitarist and composer
12 pm Portland Yacht Club free short sail for members of the public
Portland Yacht Club Commodore Micheal invites members of the public to join his members in a short sail around Portland Harbour. Sail times will be 12 pm and 2 pm Look for the yachts moored at the boat ramp jetties adjacent to the Portland Yacht Club
12 – 4 pm Whale Boat Races
Whale boat racing is a reminder of Portland’s rich maritime heritage. It is also time to reflect on the devastating impact whaling had on the southern right whale population and the gradual return of the species to Portland today.
Rowing skillfully as a team those tough men of yesteryear would row many exhaustive miles, in all weather and seas to capture a whale and tow it back to shore.
Today whaleboat rowing is still a test of team skill and the competitive spirit is still as strong but the emphasis is on fun.
12 – 4 pm Port of Portland tours departing at 12 pm 1 pm, 2 pm and 3 pm.
Experience on of the few opportunities to view the Port of Portland activities up close and personal while you enjoy an entertaining commentary from Jonesy on the Port of Portland tours. Jones’s Coachlines will once again be offering free tours on the hour at 12, 1, 2 & 3 pm You must get a ticket from the Upwelling Festival Committee information tent at the festival to secure your seat.
12-15 pm Lawn stage address from Glenelg Shire Council mayor Cr Anita Rank
12-30 Pyper Templeton Lawn stage
Pyper is a year 11 student who has so far performed in 3 musicals including Hairspray.
12-30 pm Snakes Don’t Need Keys Beach stage
Snakes Don”t Need Keys is a young up and coming 4 piece band blasting a fun and diverse blend of lyrically profound Indie Rock
1-30 pm Jason Bull Lawn stage
Jason performs covers and originals as a solo performer
1-30 pm Matilda Hassall Beach stage
Matilda sings a blend of folk and soul
2 pm Portland Yacht Club free sail for members of the public
2 pm – 3 pm Portland Yacht Club radio controlled lasers
Portland Yacht Club members are presenting the spectacle of racing radio controlled yachts around a short course located adjacent to the boat ramp jetties. The races can be viewed from the jetties or the lawn in front of the yacht club.
2 pm Sand-sphere sculpting workshop
People of all ages are invited to participate in free sand-sculpting workshops which will be conducted by Portland sculptor Andrew Walsh. Located on the Portland foreshore they are free to participate in but there will be a materials charge if you wish to keep your sculpture.
2-30 pm Flynn Gurrt lawn stage
On stage Flynn delivers a performance that grabs at your attention
2-30 pm Wade Northcott beach stage
Wade can play, stamp and splatter his way through almost any gig.
3-30 pm Tongue Tied lawn stage
Tongue Tied c don’t just make music they create pieces of art
3-30 pm 4 Wide beach stage
4 Wide play a range of rock, punk, hardcore, ska, dance. grunge and funk
6 pm – 8 pm Marine environment talks at the Angling Club
6 pm Andrew Christie Andrew is a lecturer in the fields of aquaculture, aquatic environmental management and marine biology
6-30 pm Mike Burgess executive officer of VRFish promoting how fantastic fishing is and improving the fishing experience for all.
7 pm Kirsten Abernethy Dr Abenethy will be presenting her most recent research on the fishing industry of South West Victoria.
7-30 Craig Fox Craig will be talking on how the Abalone industry has worked towards the recovery of the industry
All Day Bonney the Inflatable Whale