Arts spectacular comes to Forbes this weekend

Dancers Lillian Hodges, Fletcher Browne, Matilda Crawley, Jenna Redfern and Lily Gharib and drummers Sheryl Garner, Rob Shannon and Rose Mannion.
Dancers Lillian Hodges, Fletcher Browne, Matilda Crawley, Jenna Redfern and Lily Gharib and drummers Sheryl Garner, Rob Shannon and Rose Mannion.

Music, dance, art, markets and food will all be part of this weekend's River Arts Festival.

It's all based in the historic Victoria Park precinct, and gets under way tonight with the opening of the FLOW art gallery in the Town Hall.

Midday Saturday sees the launch of the community festival fun in Victoria Park.

Throughout Saturday afternoon there will be music in the park, poetry in the Presbyterian church, and more live music in the Town Hall where there's an exhibition by artists from around the region.

Part of Harold Street will be closed Saturday afternoon, with food providers, seating for eating and artisan stalls in the space connecting the park to the other venues.

Bring your water bottle, there will be refill stations, and bring your keep cup for hot drinks to minimise waste.

Forbes' own local musicians Lucy Simmonds, Lily Gaffaney and Georgia Sideries will be performing alongside visiting choirs and bands from Canowindra and Bathurst.

There will be entertainment across the venues throughout the afternoon, then all will come together in a spectacular finale in Victoria Park from 5pm, Rob Shannon says.

The River Spirit dancers return, and Bedgerabong school's "wacky instruments" and marimbas, the 44 Gallon Festival Drummers and Kristen's Dance Studio performers take the event into the evening.

It will have a different feel to the types of finales we've seen down at Frog's Hollow, but Shannon, who has been working with the performers separately for months now, can't wait to see it all come together.

"It will be all about water - rivers, rain," he said.

Entertainment in the park will continue with Bathurst band The 10th Man, or at the Forbes Services Memorial Club with young local vocalists.

The events can all go indoors if it rains - the outdoor events will shift to the Forbes Services Memorial Club and the Vandenberg Hotel - but it doesn't look like that will be necessary.

Still, after a pleasant afternoon with a top of 17 degrees 16 degrees you can expect the temperature to drop quickly when the sun goes down.

Organisers are encouraging people to rug up and make themselves comfortable to enjoy the show.

"Bring your fleecy blanket, bring your hot water bottle, bring your chair," Shannon said.

All entertainment is free.

When you visit Town Hall on Saturday, pick up a map for Sunday's artist trail - an extension of the festival.

Four local artists will be opening their studios between 10am and 3pm, Town Hall and the Platypus Gallery also have special exhibitions.