IT'S SET to be 10 days of utter magic.

Maryborough's Mary Poppins Festival kicked off last night with a street party and the world premiere of Happy Ever After at the Brolga Theatre.

And Carmel Murdoch, Maryborough's beloved representation of the literary icon, couldn't be more excited.

She was set to attend the adaptation of Happy Ever After, a chapter of a Mary Poppins Opens the Door by PL Travers.

The gifted author was born in Maryborough in August, 1899, in the building on the corner of Kent and Richmond streets.


Mrs Murdoch said she looked forward to the festival each year.

"It's a celebration of storytelling," she said.

"It's great to see children and adults enjoying a variety of activities over the 10 days.

"It attracts visitors from across Queensland, who come to enjoy the magic of Mary Poppins and all she stands for."

There will be many highlights over the course of the school holidays, including a whimsical outdoor performance of The Magic Banyan Tree, visits from authors Justin D'Ath, creator of the Extreme Adventure series and Kate Knapp, writer and illustrator of the Ruby Red Shoes series.

Both will be hosting workshops and storytelling sessions.

The event will culminate with Mary Poppins in the Park on July 7.

The city's riverside parks and streetscapes come to life - just like a page from a Poppins novel.

Kicking off from 10am, a host of costumed characters, themed activities and entertainment. With nanny races, chimney sweep challenges, chalk drawings and more, it will be a lot of fun.

Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour said he was particularly looking forward to seeing Happy Ever After, which will also be performed today at 1pm and 7pm.

The building on Kent St is currently being restored by the council to become a Mary Poppins museum, but it would not be fully open in time for the festival, Cr Seymour said, adding it would be open in a few months.


Happy Ever After

  • The panto-musical production kicked off last night, but will be performed again today at the Brolga Theatre at 1pm and 7pm. Tickets cost $35 for adults, $30 for pensioners, $22 for children and $100 for a family of four.


  •  Come on a storyteller's guided tour of Maryborough. Departing from 5pm at the Bond Store in Wharf St, cost will be $10 per person.


  • A workshop with Belinda Sinclair will be held from 9am tomorrow. It will be held at Gatakers Artspace and participants will learn the basics of solar plate printmaking in this hands-on practical workshop. Cost is $90 and includes materials. From 10am, a Clay Characters Workshop with Clairy Laurence will be held, where those who attend can create a storybook character. Cost will be $50. Bookings are essential, so call 4190 5723.


  •  Enjoy Sunday Riverside with SeaNic Sounds from 3pm tomorrow at the Brolga Theatre.

Kids' Morning In

  • Join in the fun of craft, puzzles, glitter tattoos and more at Hervey Bay Library. The event will be held between 9am and 12pm on Tuesday. It will be held at Maryborough Library on Wednesday.


  • ABC Wide Bay will present a selection of radio stories, celebrating the Fraser Coast community, aired in the basement of the historical Bond Store on July 5 from 6pm. Book a spot on 4190 5722.

Creative writing

  • Learn the art of storytelling with Justin D'Ath at the Bond St Store in Wharf St on July 6. Sessions will be held at 10am and 1pm and will cost $10. Bookings are essential, so call 4122 6060.

Kate Knapp

  • Kate Knapp will hold a reading of her book, Ruby Red Shoes goes to London, outside the Customs House Residence on the courtyard lawn from 10.30am on July 6.

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