It’s a fest of the best

By Michael Mattingly

THE second year of the Heathcote Fringe Bendigo Blues and Roots Festival is almost upon us.

In its inaugural year in 2017, the event proved highly popular, bringing an incredible amount of visitors to town to share in the fun with the locals.

Like last year, this year’s event, on November 11, will run across five different venues.

“We had five venues last year including wineries, olive groves and restaurants where the top acts from the Blues and Roots Festival came out to be part of open-air concerts on the Sunday afternoon in some of Heathcote’s most picturesque settings,” Peter Maine, president of Heathcote Tourism and Development, said.

“This year we have five venues again but have added more great bands and will be kicking off the music at each venue from 12.30pm on the Sunday.

“The idea is to spend a relaxing afternoon enjoying quality music and some great food, wine and beer.”

The venues this year are Shiraz Republic, which also includes the Cornella Real microbrewery, Bridgeward Olive Grove, Munari Wines, Heathcote Winery and Merindoc Café and Cellar Door.

Each venue will have a range of singers and foods to choose from.

Bridgewater Grove will play host to Sarah Wilkinson and Maja. Dan Duggan, Rhyley McGrath and Doggn it Blues will play at Heathcote Winery. Ben J. Carter and Wayne Jury will serenade the Merindoc Cellar Door. Bill Barber and Harry Coulson’s Blue Dogs will play at Munari Wines, while Andy Garlick, Mast Gully Fellers and Nation Wild will take their talents to Shiraz Republic.

“A big part of the success last year was the tremendous support of the local community,” Mr Maine said.

“They took the opportunity to spend a great afternoon with family and friends. We hope the word has spread and we get even more locals enjoying this great event again this year”

The Wine Down Sunday festival is on Sunday, November 11 from 12.30pm.

Pre-purchased discount tickets for $12 can be bought at or by dropping in to the Visitor Information Centre.