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Happy 40th Araluen

Araluen’s birthday bash is here, and everyone is invited! Grab a slice of cake and raise a glass in celebration of the Red Centre’s premiere arts venue.

By Betty Sweetlove

ALONGSIDE A SUITE of spectacular programming, the Araluen team has curated two special birthday events this month. Celebrating four decades of vibrant arts and culture, the stunning anniversary exhibition, Ground Swell: 40 Years of Araluen, kicks off festivities with a free all-day party.

“We’re putting together a major exhibition, about 200 works from our collection, but also some borrowed works from the National Gallery in Canberra … it’s going to be pretty special,” says Araluen Arts Centre Director, Felicity Green.

Local favourites The Wanted Gems and Espie St AllStars are up first on the line-up, with coffee and food vans at the ready to kick off the festivities. Green says it wouldn’t be a party without speeches from extra special arts royalty.

“Doris Stuart Kngwarreye is going to say a few words as a custodian of Araluen, and then we’ll have a big cake cutting ceremony – free cake for everyone! There’s a free sausage sizzle as well, face painting for the kids, and 8CCC Community Radio is doing a live broadcast from the venue.”

An afternoon panel discussion illuminates the inspiring artists and dazzling artworks of Central Australia, before more musical acts take to the stage.

“It’s really about 40 years of collecting … We’ve got an amazing collection that’s here, housed for our community, so it’s a celebration of that and what we’ve achieved,” says Green.

Later on in the month, Warren H Williams and Family Band raise the roof at a special birthday concert. Expect glorious harmonies, and old and new favourites from the legendary desert musician.

“He’s composed songs for our birthday, so that’s going to be very, very, very special.”

This is shaping up to be the birthday party of the year. Make tracks to Araluen, and celebrate four incredible decades of art and culture in Mparntwe/Alice Springs.

Araluen Birthday Party & Ground Swell Opening
WHEN SAT 1 JUN | 10.30AM-2PM 

Warren H Williams and Family: Araluen’s 40th Birthday
WHEN SAT 15 JUN | 7-9.15PM 
COST $10-$30


Photo: Library & Archives NT. (1983). Alice Springs, Performing Arts Centre, Araluen Northern Territory Government Photographer Collection, PH0136/0025

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