The Channel 7 Mandurah Crab Fest claimed Bronze in the Major Festivals and Events category at the2017 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards in Darwin on Friday night.
The Crab Fest, WA's biggest free regional event, won Bronze against a field of strong contenders, with the Australian Grand Prix claiming Silver and Toowoomba's Carnival of Flowers taking home the Gold.
Mayor Marina Vergone said she was so proud of Mandurah after the Crab Fest claimed the Bronze prize.
“We are so thrilled the Crab Fest has claimed the Bronze Award in the „best major festival‟ category, we were up against some outstanding competition,” she said.
“This award cements that the Crab Fest is a fantastic tourism event that our community can be proud of. All the hard work, dedication and long hours that happen behind the scenes to bring the Crab Fest to life year after year is to be admired.
“Thank you to our wonderful community, local businesses, volunteers and sponsors for their contributions and valued input into Crab Fest, the event has become so successful due to this continued support and has played a huge part in the event's triumphs.”
This year's event, presented by Live Lighter, will mark Crab Fest's 19th year of delighting local, national and international visitors with an impressive program, with more than 120,000 people enjoying the 2016 event.
Crab Fest is Mandurah's signature annual tourism event, with an average yearly attendance of more than 100,000 local, intrastate, interstate and international visitors. Showcasing the best food and entertainment the Peel Region offers, this year the free, two-day festival includes 56 hours of entertainment across five stages, celebrities, unique dining experiences, waterway activations and Mandurah's famous Blue Manna crabs. The festival is an integral part of the state and delivers economic and social benefits to local businesses and the community.
This year's festival will be another show-stopper, with food set to be a major focus of the festival.
Mandurah and Peel Tourism Organisation (MAPTO) CEO Karen Priest said the accolade reflected the maturity of Crab Fest as a tourism product.
“Crab Fest is a perfect signature event for Mandurah as it builds on our region's natural assets and cultural heritage,” Ms Priest said.
“As a tourism product, it is highly accessible and, through the many free and ticketed events in the program, it appeals to a wide selection of audiences. MAPTO congratulates City of Mandurah and the many people who contribute to and facilitate this major event. To be in the auditorium and see Mandurah Crab Fest on screen as a winner in front of 700 members of the national tourism fraternity was the best moment of the evening.”
For more information about the free festival, and to scoop your tickets to this year's amazing ticketed events, go to www.crabfest.com.au