Parrtjima – A Festival in Light draws record crowds to the Red Centre

NT Government

The Red Centre was illuminated by Parrtjima – A Festival in Light with record crowds immersed in stunning light installations and Aboriginal culture, earlier this month.

Set against the ancient MacDonnell Ranges, an average of just over 2200 people visited Alice Springs Desert Park (ASDP) each night to see Parrtjima.

Increased mid-week programming and a new, more accessible layout for the 2023 event helped attract the biggest Monday, Tuesday and Thursday crowds since Parrtjima began in 2016 (more than 2,200 attendees on Monday, more than 2,400 on Tuesday and more than 2,800 on Thursday). Workshops were also at capacity with more than 1000 people attending the Eastern Reggae Band concert.

Desert Park was forced to close due to inclement weather on Saturday, however, festival programming was moved to Araluen Arts Centre with almost 600 people attending the talks and music events.

This year’s theme, Listening with Heart, was inspired by the artwork surrounding the Statement from the Heart, and encouraged people to come together, meet and take time to contemplate and reflect in the beautiful Red Centre.

Grounded saw artworks projected onto the red sand of ASDP, featuring six artworks from artists across the Central and Western Desert region while the MacDonnell Ranges Light Show remained a favourite, turning the ancient landmark into a natural canvas.

Relive the magic of Parrtjima and stay up-to-date with the latest news via the Parrtjima social media channels or []

Quotes attributable to Chief Minister, Natasha Fyles:

“Parrtjima – A Festival in Light is one of Alice Springs’ most highly anticipated events each year for locals and tourists, and 2023 was no exception.

“The benefits of events cannot be overstated, and independent research shows Parrtjima 2022 generated a total expenditure stimulus in the Northern Territory of $14.7 million, with 81 per cent (that’s $11.9 million) being new money to the Territory.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Major Events, Paul Kirby:

“With three record-breaking nights, Parrtjima is only getting brighter by the year, with those attendances bringing in significant return to the economy.”

“The Alice Springs community and visitors have truly embraced Parrtjima 2023 with a total of 20,271 attendances across the festival. There was roughly a 60/40 per cent split between Territorians and interstate guests, as well as international visitors thrown into the mix.”

Northern Territory Government

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