Wagga Wagga City Council (WWCC) has agreed to sponsor the Wagga Wagga Mardi Gras, Gear and Beers and the upcoming TEDx event as part of the second round of the 2023/24 Major Events and Sponsorship Program.
After a successful outing in 2023, the 2024 Mardi Gras Festival will receive $20,000 from the council to continue the development and expansion of the festival in the city.
The Gears and Beers festival has been backed for the next three years, with the council promising $20,000 each year until 2026.
The popular festival has become an attraction for cyclists across the country and a mainstay on Wagga’s festival calendar.
November’s TEDx event has also received a boost of $10,000 to ensure the conference’s first trip to Wagga is successful.
TEDx is one of the biggest and most popular conferences in the world and regularly features world leaders in technology, entertainment and design who provide insight into their field.
Bidgee Strawberries and Cream was the only applicant that had its application declined. WWCC said the reasoning behind its decision was that a previous event from Bidgee Straweberries and Cream had received $6000 from council earlier this year.
WWCC’s destination and events coordinator Kimberly Parker said it was important for WWCC to sponsor a variety of events and cater for a range of demographics.
“Each year we donate $100,000 to a variety of new and existing events as part of the major events, films and festivals,” Ms Parker said.
“It is a competitive funding stream, so it is important to showcase a variety of types of fans that have come to this city.”
Ms Parker said she was excited to see the diverse applications across both rounds of funding in 2023.
“There’s definitely a variety of events there; the Mardi Gras is such a vibrant event that people continue to visit each year, it continues to grow into the future and really showcases our community here in the city,” she said.
“It’s quite pleasing to have a world-renowned brand like TEDx which showcases different minds, different creative thoughts and innovation, come and visit our city as well as Gears and Beers which is another very popular event, which is going from strength to strength – the variety of the city is one of its great strengths.”
Events funding has officially been exhausted for 2023 with applications for the next round of funding due to open in May 2024 following the announcement of the 2024/25 budget.