7 Southern Downs Events to Add to Your 2020 Calendar Now

Planning a trip to the Southern Downs and Granite Belt but don’t know when to visit? Tie in one of these awesome events to get the most out of your trip!

Fill your calendar with these huge events and get ready for a memorable 2020!

1. Stanthorpe Apple and Grape Harvest Festival

Celebrating the wine industry at the Stanthorpe Apple and Grape Festival

Stanthorpe’s Apple and Grape Harvest Festival is a celebration of the Granite Belt’s produce and booming wine industry. This biennial 10 day event culminates in an unforgettable weekend of colourful street carnivals and the renowned wine fiesta.

When: 28 February – 8 March 2020
Where: Stanthorpe CBD, with some events around the Granite Belt
More information: Head to the event website or Facebook page
Local tip: The main weekend of events is the 7-8 March. If you prefer less crowds and a larger choice of accommodation, check out their mid-week events.

2. Killarney Picnic Basket Day

Signposts, Killarney Picnic Basket Day

Image by Bec Findlay

One of Queensland’s most spectacular gardens, Melrose Station, hosts local producers and makers on their rolling lawns. Bring your own picnic blanket, settle in for the day and graze on luscious local food while supporting the Killarney community.

When: Sunday 5 April 2020
Where: Melrose Station, Killarney
More information: Head to the event website or Facebook page
Local tip: Killarney is a beautiful country town surrounded by rolling hills and the Main Range National Park. Make a weekend of it and explore Queen Mary Falls the day before.

3. Allora Autumn Festival

Allora & District Historical Society Museum in Autumn

Old Allora Shire Hall

Celebrate the change of the seasons in ‘the best little town on the Downs’. The Allora Autumn Festival brings the main street alive with local produce, art and craft stalls, open gardens and more. Follow penny farthing bikes and vintage cars as they cruise the streets and don’t miss checking out the museums and historic homes.

When: 2 May 2020
Where: Allora CBD
More information: Head to the event Facebook page
Local tip: Make sure you check out the Mary Poppins House – where author PL Travers lived as a child. History buffs should head 10 minutes down the road to the spectacular Glengallan Homestead and Heritage Centre. 

4. Grazing the Granite Belt

Lazy grazing experience, Grazing the Granite Belt event

Enjoy two days of lazy grazing around the Granite Belt with award-winning wines and dozens of gourmet food dishes. Use the hop-on hop-off bus to visit wineries and indulge in locally inspired meals by our food artisans.

When: 16 – 17 May 2020
Where: Around the Granite Belt – Stanthorpe, Ballandean and other villages
More information: Head to the Granite Belt Wine Country website or the event Facebook page 
Local tip: Once you’ve got your ticket, make sure you print or download the bus schedule so you can plan your trip to make sure you are on the right bus and get to go to all the wineries you’d like. Time to get the highlighter out!

5. Jumpers and Jazz in July

Jumpers & Jazz event at Warwick Art Gallery

Warwick’s Jumpers and Jazz in July is Queensland’s quirkiest yarnbombing and jazz winter festival. With live jazz, trees covered in jumpers, tastes of country cuisine and a huge program of events spanning 10 days, the festival is bookended by two big weekend of celebrations.

When: 16 – 26 July 2020
Where: Warwick
More information: Head to the event website or Facebook page 
Local tip: If you’ve got kids, make sure you head to the Killarney Bonfire Night – it’s one of the biggest events in the program. You;ll get to see heaps of unique fire drums with a massive bonfire in the centre! Great to keep warm on the freezing winter night.

6. Historic Leyburn Sprints

Vintage Caravan Competition at Historic Leyburn Sprints

Vintage Caravan Competition, part of Historic Leyburn Sprints

The 25th Historic Leyburn Sprints will return to the streets of this quaint town, with over 200 cars racing around Leyburn. Celebrity drivers, country markets, live music, Shannon’s show and shine and the Vintage Caravan competition all add to the entertainment of this unique event!

When: 22-23 August 2020
Where: Leyburn
More information: Head to the event website or Facebook page 
Local tip: Don’t miss a visit to the Royal Hotel for a pub meal, noted as the oldest continually licensed hotel (c.1863) in Queensland.

7. Warwick Rodeo and Gold Cup Campdraft

Campdrafter, Warwick Gold Cup 2019

Image by Storm Lahiff

Every year the nation’s top rodeo riders and the best broncs and bucking bulls gather for the Warwick Rodeo, known far and wide as ‘Australia’s most famous’. Keep the action going as you party on with live bands into the night. Never been to a rodeo or campdraft before? This classic country experience is a must do!

When: 19 – 25 October 2020
Where: Warwick
More information: Head to the event website or Facebook page 
Local tip: Book your accommodation as early as possible! If you’d like to camp near the action, there is camping available in Australiana Park each year, but bookings for this won’t open until much closer to the event.

Other events in Warwick, Stanthorpe and surrounds

There’s always something on in the Southern Downs and Granite Belt. Don’t miss a range of events held at cellar doors throughout the year celebrating local wine, food and entertainment. Rev heads should visit the Morgan Park Raceway website for event details – and to check out why it’s one of Australia’s busiest regional raceways! Keep your eye on our events calendar for a full list of what’s on.

While You’re Here

Make a weekend of it by checking out these other things to do in the area:

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