It’s official the line-up for Pokolbin Pride 2017 is here
We’ve just got information that there is a concert at Hope Estate on the same weekend as Pokolbin Pride… our advice is to book accommodation now to avoid high prices or disappointment.
Here’s the line-up for the festival so far…
Friday 20th October
- Rainbow Families Lunch 12pm to 3pm – Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen
- Bubbles & Beats Welcome Party – Peterson House
Saturday 21st October
- Rainbow Families Lunch 12pm to 3pm -Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen
Pokolbin Pride Party – Cypress Lakes Resort featuring DJ Mason Andrews, Mel & Jade, Daniel Turner and the fabulous Prada’s Priscillas.
Doors Open at 6.30pm with food markets & DJ – first act at 8pm
Sunday 22nd October
- Rainbow Families Lunch 12pm to 3pm – Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen
- Recovery Party 12pm to 4pm – Ivanhoe Vineyard
- Community Markets – Draytons Family Wines
- LGBTI Art Expo – Tamburlaine Organic Wines
- Exclusive Tastings for Pokolbin Pride at Participating Wineries and Food venues – watch this space
- Rainbow High Teas at Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen from 9am to 4pm
Tickets for the Party and VIP Packages are now available.
It’s time for a teaser about Pokolbin Pride #2…
We’ve already locked in Newcastle’s cutest export DJ Mason Andrews and Central Coast local Daniel Turner as talent for the Saturday night party with more Australian acts to follow shortly.
Get in early and book your Hunter Valley accommodation early.. year one saw more than 600 people visit the festival and numbers are set to rise!
We’ve listened to the feedback and will be keeping the official events for year two consolidated over three days – here’s the beginnings of the festival calendar;
- Friday 20th October – Welcome Dinner at Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen 7pm
- Saturday 21st October – Pokolbin Pride Party from 6.30pm to 1am
- Sunday 22nd October – Recovery Party 12-4pm
- Sunday 22nd October – Closing Reception 5pm – 7.30pm
You can expect more event announcements and early bird ticket sales to start in the new year.
For now have a dazzling Christmas and a glitzy New Year
Matty & Jimmy Kerr
Thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts for helping to make the inaugural Pokolbin Pride a reality.
With 5200 followers on Facebook we saw almost 600 people come out to the Hunter Valley over the festival and 243 people along to the party on Saturday night featuring Sisco Electro, Luke Antony and DJ Dom De Sousa.
We are delighted to announce the dates for Pokolbin Pride #2 – Friday 20th October to Sunday 22nd October 2017. Make sure you are on the mailing list to receive up to date information about the schedule and early bird tickets.
As the Founders of the festival we have decided to launch two initiatives to keep the momentum going…
Pokolbin Pride Sundays at Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen
- every Sunday from 2pm to 5pm we are offering a share platter and two drinks for $45; we want to create a regular space for the LGBTI community in the Hunter Valley to hang out – friends and families welcome.
Rainbow High Teas at Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen
- Nan’s High Teas are one of our most popular items in the restaurant – from Thursday 10th November all our High Teas will be rainbow high teas and $2 from every sale will go directly into the Pokolbin Pride fund to help make the festival happen each year.
Of course the festival couldn’t have happened without the help of the local businesses that lent us their space, staff, creativity, enthusiasm, insights and financial support…
Our founding partners are…
- Cypress Lakes – Oaks Hotel Resort
- Tamburlaine Organic Wines
- Draytons Family Wines
- Peterson House
- Tinklers Wines
- Eagles Rest Wines
- Ivanhoe Wines
- Log Press Cafe
- Moorebank Private Vineyard
- Hunters Quarter
- Hunter Valley Smelly Cheese Shop
- Lucy Laqua
- Sports Power – Cessnock
- Oliver Campbell Heslop
- The Cellar Restaurant
- Hart & Hunter
- Macquariedale Organic Wines
- McGuigan Wines
- and of course ACON Hunter
See you very soon xxx
Matty & Jimmy
There’s just two more sleeps to go before Pokolbin Pride 2016 kicks off in the Hunter Valley…
Thursday to Monday
- Art Expo at Tamburlaine – FREE
- Markets at Draytons Family Wines – FREE
- Rainbow High Tea at Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen $35 – bookings on 0427 679 887 or online
Thursday to Sunday
- Picnic Spaces at Eagles Rest & Tinklers – FREE
- Oh My God, I’ve Been Kidnapped and I Hate What I’m Wearing – Hunter Valley Summer Theatre
- Canape Reception at Hunters Quarter $65 – tickets
- Bubbles, Lunch & Lucy Laqua at Peterson House $55 – tickets
- Special Tastings at Moorebank Vineyard & Hunter Valley Smelly Cheese Shop
- Pokolbin Pride Party at Cypress Lakes Resort $49 – tickets
- Spit or Swallow Recovery Party at Ivanhoe $35 – tickets
- Bubbles, Lunch & Lucy Laqua at Peterson House $55 – tickets
- Drag Queen vs Drag King Volleyball at Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen
- Pride Mass at St John the Divine, Branxton
Our supporting vineyards and wineries that you should check out during the weekend…
Eagles Rest, Tinklers, Draytons Family Wines, Tamburlaine Organic Wines, Macquariedale, Hart & Hunter, Ivanhoe, Tempus Two, Moorebank Vineyard, Peterson House, Lambloch Estate
Where to eat…
Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen, Hunters Quarter, The Log Press Cafe, The Cellar Restaurant, Blaxlands Inn and Hunter Valley Smelly Cheese Shop
How to get around…
Hunter Valley Hire Cars for travel in style and safety around the valley call 0498 492 539
Rover Coaches with services to and from Newcastle on Saturday & Sunday – book online
Have a wonderful Pokolbin Pride!
A note about the calendar
We have updated the festival calendar and removed some of the scheduled events that weren’t getting enough love.
Please appreciate that this is year one, with no council, regional government or tourist association funding so we cannot afford to run events that looked like they would be making a loss – this is a social enterprise and we want to make sure it’s a success so that we can get bigger in year 2, 3, 4 and beyond…
Much love Matty & Jimmy Kerr xxx
We are just in the process of finalizing a list of businesses that are supporting Pokolbin Pride and will publish it here very soon.
Free Activities – every day
1. Family & Pet Friendly Picnic Spaces at Eagles Rest and Tinklers – with ‘all-ages friendly entertainment’
2. LGBTI Art Exhibition at Tamburlaine
3. Markets at Draytons Family Wines
Ticketed events and entertainment (from $12.50)
Everyday and night you’ll find a wide range of opportunities to sample some of best of the Hunter’s wine and food with a LGBTI twist to it…
There’s a progressive comedy tour, hypnosis show, Drag Queen and King volley ball match, Sunday afternoon recovery party and a Gala Dinner.
We have organised dinners and canapé receptions with entertainment and speakers.
On Saturday 22nd October there’s a evening party hosted by Tatler’s Wines; free parking available.
We will be announcing more events and activities up until the 17th August. Then a downloadable calendar will be available here and printed calendars will be distributed by our partners and through LGBTI media and venues throughout Australia.
Tickets are available from
$2 from every ticket sold automatically goes to the Pokolbin Pride good cause fund and many of the event organizers have also declared that portion of any profit will be donated as well.
Thanks for your patience and support as we make this happen…
We’d love your feedback and questions 😃
Matty and I were on our way back from a camping trip and visiting his Mum and Dad in northern NSW our first real ‘holiday’ since we moved to the Hunter Valley in July 2016.
We were chatting away about how proud we were of what we’d accomplished and sharing our mutual frustration that we hadn’t really spent enough time cultivating new friendships in our new home.
It was the weekend of Lovedale Long Lunch which sees up to 20,000 people a day visit seven wineries in the Hunter Valley.
“There should be a LLL for the gays” said Matty innocently “then we’d make some new friends”.
When we first launched the Facebook group ‘Pokolbin Pride‘ we both thought we’d end up hosting a lunch sometime at our restaurant, Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen, and connecting with some of the LGBTI locals that we knew were out and about but we just hadn’t met them yet.
What happened next was astonishing…
- Overnight we gained about 400 followers, mainly locals, all voicing their excitement that someone was creating a gay and lesbian festival in the Hunter Valley
- Not really knowing what to do next we said we’d announce the details of the festival when we hit 3000 followers (we thought this would kick the project into the long grass for a bit)
- About 10 days later we’d notched up about 3100 followers
- True to our word we’d did a quick sense check of what else was going on in the valley in the spring and found a ‘clean’ weekend (20th to 24th October 2016)
- We now have a five day festival of LGBTI events and activities being hosted by us and a collection of other businesses in the Hunter Valley running as a social enterprise
Our ‘corporate’ kicked in and we created a survey to ask our audience what they wanted from a regional LGBTI event and we’ve shared the results with business community – Cessnock Council threw a business networking event so that we could share the story and more than 100 people showed up.
The outcome is that we’ve put together a calendar of events that the community said they wanted – this won’t be a Sydney Mardi Gras in the vines.
We have a number of free events including
- a family and pet friendly picnic
- an art exhibition
- markets featuring LGBTI businesses and crafts alongside community groups and charities.
There’s entertainment from local and national talent starting at $12.50 a ticket and a host of spectacular dinners and parties to attend over the five days and nights.
Everything is going to have special LGBTI twist so expect performers popping up all over the valley.
A portion of every ticket sold and the overall profits from the festival will be shared with the LGBTI community through a good cause fund.
You can get involved by bringing your local or national business or community group along to the markets (apply here).
You can register your interest as a performer of any description here.
Or you can just join our mailing list to make sure that don’t miss out on what’s happening and when.
See you in October xxx
On Saturday 4th June we hit 3000 followers on Facebook and officially launched the 2016 Festival;
- Community Survey Open (closes 10pm Friday 17th June)
- Public Consultation Meetings Sunday 19th June to Tuesday 22nd June (Checkout the Facebook page)
- Partner Development Meetings 23rd June to 30th June
- Festival Calendar Launch 9am Monday 4th July
- Campaign Launch Monday 8th August
- Festival Launch Thursday 20th October 2016
- Festival Closing BBQ Monday 24th October 2016
Media Coverage so far…
In less than two weeks you’ve grown our online community to more than 3000 followers on Facebook.
So it’s time for us to honour the commitment and reveal the brand and dates for the 2016 Festival.
- Opening is Thursday 20th October 2016
- Closing BBQ is Monday 24th October 2016
Our next milestone will be 10,000 followers on Facebook; at which point we will make a very special announcement.
The full Festival Calendar will be revealed at 9am on Monday July 4th 2016.
Have your say right now…
tell us what you’d like to feature at Pokolbin Pride
In the meantime we have released information about our Partners program so that not-for-profits and businesses can get involved in making the festival big and beautiful.
We are also looking for performance artists of all sorts of shapes, sizes and genres so please do share the opportunity or register your interest.
Pokolbin Pride is the Hunter Valley’s first LGBTI Festival; providing an opportunity for the communities of Pokolbin, Cessnock, Maitland, Kurri Kurri, Rutherford, Singleton, Branxton and surrounds along with LGBTIers, their families and friends from elsewhere in NSW, Australia and beyond to come together and enjoy the fine wines, flavours and fantastic countryside that the Hunter Valley has to offer.
The Festival is taking place from Thursday 20th October until Monday 24th October 2016.
Pokolbin Pride is open to any business or organisation operating in the Hunter Valley region as a partner.
Matty Kerr & Jimmy Wright
Owners of Nanna Kerr’s Kitchen