From the Newsroom

Grafton Public School students proudly display their banner ahead of the Bendigo Bank Youth Banner Competition at Market Square on December 4. Image: Emma Pritchard

Community parties during Jacaranda Festival

Emma Pritchard

The Jacaranda trees may not be blooming, but the community spirit blossomed at Market Square on December 4 as the Bendigo Bank Youth Banner Competition and Bendigo Bank Children’s Party brought families and friends together to celebrate the Jacaranda Festival and allow the kids’ creative talents to shine.

Several students representing local primary schools proudly held up their banners in front of the crowd and spoke about the inspirations behind their colourful creations.

Using recycled banners and decorations from previous competitions and incorporating their love of the Jacaranda Festival into their eye-catching design, South Grafton Public School was announced as the winner of the big school section while the judges, former Matron of Honour Suzanne Campbell and 2021 Matron of Honour Enid McKew, couldn’t split Grafton Public School and Westlawn with both schools sharing second prize.

St Joseph’s Primary School won the small school section with a bright banner commemorating community engagement during the Jacaranda Festival.

The Grafton Scout Group also presented a beautiful banner in remembrance of the 13 cub scouts who tragically drowned in the Clarence River in 1943.

The banners will be displayed in Grafton Shoppingworld for the remainder of the 2021 Jacaranda Festival.

After the winners of the Bendigo Bank Youth Banner Competition received their prizes, the 2021 Jacaranda Queen’s Party invited the youngest members of the crowd to participate in the Bendigo Bank Children’s Party.

Dressed as characters from Star Wars, the Wiggles, Disney heroes, heroines and villains, and modelling some exquisite gowns and outfits, children cheerfully joined the 2021 Jacaranda and Junior Jacaranda Queen candidates in a fun filled hokey pokey before the special Jacaranda Costume Contest commenced.  

Judges had an extremely difficult time choosing the winners.

Entrants smiled adoringly as they were escorted around the dance floor by the candidates who also handed out special toys and prizes.

Following the Jacaranda Costume Contest, children had the opportunity to have their photos taken with members of the 2021 Jacaranda Queen’s Party.


Best Jacaranda inspired costume:

1st Emily Kerrigan; 2nd Trinity Yager; 3rd Winter Worthington.


Best “I made it myself” costume:

1st Lily Saunders; 2nd Violet McKew; 3rd Layla Knight.


Best character costume:

1st Winter Worthington; 2nd Harper Hartog; 3rd Audrey-Mae English.


Most original costume:

1st Tennyson Yager; 2nd Harriett Heggie; 3rd Kayla Causley.


Best duo in costume:

1st Ryder Biggs and Gypsy-Rose Biggs; 2nd Arlo Parbery and Miller Parbery; 3rd Talia Causley and Taya Graham.