Magic weekend stirs spirits in Bellingen
Quite simply, the weekend was magic.
The range of musical talent was huge, the quality of the production was excellent and the ambience welcoming.
Everyone found their own highlights but the ethereal voice of local Inga Liljestrom charmed many, the Koori/reggae mix of Yilila was excellent and the Crooked Fiddle Band was wild.
The unique layer of the Wanampi Inma came with its own frisson, especially when, on Saturday night, a big gutsy wind arrived right on cue at the start of the dances.
Gumbaynggir elders had invited their brothers and sisters from the APY Lands to bring their Rainbow Serpent Dreaming and help re-vitalise the spirit on the east coast and all said most emphatically that the spirit had been stirred.
The visitors also commented on the strength of Gumbaynggir culture and were pleased to see they shared the principles of promoting alcohol and drug-free environments.
Local elder Uncle Larry Kelly encouraged people to give generously when a blanket was passed around on Sunday but there still remains a shortfall for the costs of the gruelling four day trek.
Donations are very welcome and can be made at any BCU outlet - the account is: Aboriginal Men's Learning Circle, BSB 704328, Account 204552 S20.1.