In case the nippy mornings and non-stop London-worthy rain haven’t been enough of an indication, this is your PSA that autumn is well and truly here. While we welcome a respite from the lingering summer humidity, it’s no secret that this in-between weather can be a bit… indecisive. Some days it’s sunny with a chance of beach-bummin’ and other days we’re rugged up in sweaters and avoiding the rain. If you're looking for things to do in Brisbane this autumn, we've done the legwork for you.
In the nature of ‘carpe diem’, we’ve rounded up a list of 8 things happening around Brisbane this autumn that you should add to your hit list before winter sets in.
Big Skies Festival | Sat, Apr 27 – Sun, 5 May
If you’re hoping to escape the big smoke for a day or two (or even a whole week) the inaugural Big Skies Festival in the picturesque Western Downs is calling. Celebrating all the sights, tastes and experiences that make outback Australia so incredible, Big Skies is a 10-day festival that includes everything from camping and hot air ballooning to live music and the best local food. The weeklong event kicks of Saturday, April 27 with the 107th Dalby Picnic Race Day, followed by a free outdoor cinema under a blanket of stars you’ll never see in the city.
The final weekend of the festival will see Jimbour Amphitheatre come alive with a line-up of Australia’s best Rock ‘n’ Roll artists for Day on the Plain, and the skies filled with dozens of hot air balloons. If you prefer to keep your feet firmly on the ground, the Hot Air Balloon Breakfast will let you take in the splendour of the event with a hearty meal in hand. Follow it up with the local food markets, Food And Fibre, showcasing the best of locally grown and sewn produce from the Western Downs. MasterChef’s own Hayden Quinn will be there on the day sharing his unique take on healthy, fresh and vibrant cooking. Whether you choose to rough it and camp or keep things comfortable in one of the local motels, the Big Skies Festival is the ultimate escape for a day or two or even the whole week.
Banff Mountain Film Festival 2019 World Tour | Mon, Apr 1 - Sun, April 6
The Canadian mountain town of Banff is home to the iconic annual Banff Mountain Film Festival. And it’s coming to Brisbane… sort of. The Powerhouse Theatre will be featuring the Australian two-and-a-half-hour showcase of exclusive film footage. Think towering Canadian pines, snow-covered mountains, winding valleys and icicles forming down cascading waterfalls. Selected award winners from 300 films from the Canadian film festival are what we get to see here in Brisbane. From stimulating picturesque moments to adrenaline pumping, hand gripping seconds of suspense, this collation of films will transport you to the depths of Canadian forestry, and deep into the Banff National Park. You’ll suddenly feel a lot colder this autumn, so pack a jumper!
Harlem Globetrotters | Thur, April 11
Whether you’re a Basketball fiend, follower or friendly player, this is your event. From 7pm to 10pm, the Gold Coast Sports & Leisure Centre will host the well-travelled iconic Harlem Globetrotters. Formed in 1962, this basketball brand has become an entertainment sensation, performing an impressive array of basketball tricks, skills and moves. They hold a whopping 17 Guinness World Record Titles, which is enough to get us to the show! This family-friendly event is sure to wow attendees, although we're sure we'll just be sitting there and questioning our own coordination.
22nd Spanish Film Festival | Wed, Apr 24 - Wed, May 15
Hola, mis amigos! The Palace Cinemas is hosting the 22nd annual Spanish Film Festival in Brisbane this autumn! We’d recommend catching The Tribe on the opening night, for a female-driven comedy about street dance giving us serious Bad Mom vibes (girl power!). Definitely a night for the girls, this film and fiesta will finish with an after-party featuring Torres Wines, tapas from Moda Restaurant and live entertainment. Showing in Spanish with English subtitles, we have an inkling that drinks were purposely made after the 90-minute film. Get those salsa shoes out and click ‘going’ on Facebook because the girls won’t turn down this event.
Noosa Food & Wine Festival | Thus, May 16 – Mon, May 20
Once again, Noosa’s iconic Hastings Street, Noosa Main Beach and Noosa Hinterland will be taken over by the humming activity of the much-anticipated Noosa Food & Wine Festival. With everything from local produce and brewery trails to mastercasses and garden parties, this is not your typical beach getaway. While the annual devotees of the Noosa Food and Wine Festival booked their tickets right off the bat, there are still tickets left for any last-minute planners. Get ready to shuck, sip, and savour the best of the Sunny Coast.
Fish Lane Festival | Sat, May 11
In case you missed it, Fish Lane Festival is back! Serving up tasty eats, premium brews, Brisbane's best live music and more, this laneway foodie festival is a celebration of everything we love about the River City. Kicking off from midday until late on Saturday May 11, the free, fully licensed festival will take over the South Brisbane through to Grey Street in West End with plenty of gourmet foodie spots along the way. Expect to see the likes of l’ School, Nom on Melbourne and Kiss the Berry make their Fish Lane Festival debut and take in the latest from urban artists Elizabeth Woods and Kevin Leong.
Winter Racing Carnival | From Sat, May 11
Going to the races is something to look forward to when the temperature starts to drop. There is a distinctive, playful ambience rather than going in the summer with sweaty bodies galore! The thoroughbred Queensland Winter Racing Carnival is spread across five Queensland venues, including our very own Brisbane Racing Club’s Doomben Racecourse! What better autumn event to style your new winter coat and felt fedora together than the Treasury Brisbane Ladies Oaks Day on May 26? For those that are also interested in the actual horses, the grand thoroughbred competition commences on May 11. Doomben will be bustling so order some cocktails, place some bets and it’s sure to be a charming day at the races.
The Powerhouse Knockoff Fridays | Every Friday
Every Friday, laughter reverberates off the roof of the Powerhouse. For those that are still depressed having to wait 365 days for the next comedy festival, this is the event for you. Hilarious national and local comedians take up the Turbine Platform with the funniest material they can muster on Knockoff Friday nights. For an impromptu routine, the last Friday of every month also hosts ImproMafia, Brisbane’s longest established comedy group! Make the most of your visit and head in early to one of the Powerhouse’s two restaurants for a riverside meal and a glass of wine (or three). It’s Friday, it’s funny and its free – post-work drinks sorted!
Not enough for you? Try these on for size.
- Before the cold weather really sets in, squeeze in one last dip in one of the watering holes around Brisbane.
- Fight the hump-day blues with Ramen Wednesday's at one of our fave BNE bars.
- Challenge your sea legs and enjoy a cocktail or two at Brisbane's favourite boat party.
- Text that friend you've been meaning to catch up with and plan a BFF date.
- Enjoy 2-for-1 burgers at (in our opinion) one of the best burger joints in town.
Feature image: Pinterest
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