New partnership aims to reduce waste and environmental impact of our festivals

Major Events Gold Coast (MEGC) has partnered with Clean Vibes to help reduce waste at the city’s major music and entertainment festivals and minimise the impact on the environment.

The partnership will see Clean Vibes become the Official Cleaning and Waste Management Services Provider for all four of MEGC’s festivals in 2023 – Blues on Broadbeach, Cooly Rocks On, SPRINGTIME and Groundwater Country Music Festival.

MEGC CEO Jan McCormick said partnering with Clean Vibes was a smart way to manage waste and the environmental footprint of MEGC’s portfolio of award-winning festivals.

“As our festivals grow in popularity, we’re seeing attendance increase and with that comes additional waste challenges,” said Ms McCormick. “We want to make sure we continue to give our fans the best possible festival experience and that means ensuring we are following best practice when it comes to sustainable waste management. We also want to make sure our festivals don’t impact negatively on the beautiful locations we deliver them in.”

Clean Vibes National Operations Manager Nick Viner said Clean Vibes was proud to partner with Major Events Gold Coast to bring sustainable waste management and cleaning services to the Gold Coast community.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the MEGC team to maximise recycling and promote sustainable initiatives across its portfolio of festivals on the Gold Coast,” said Mr Viner.

Some of the initiatives that have been introduced at MEGC’s festivals are waste sorting onsite and implementing the can and bottle return scheme. Vendors are also asked to put in place sustainable practices to reduce overall waste and maximise recycling.

“Clean Vibes works closely with MEGC and all stakeholders to make sure we are being as sustainable as possible,” said Mr Viner. “We work with all festival vendors to ensure they are using approved recyclable or compostable serviceware products onsite and the Clean Vibes team sort through all waste into their appropriate waste streams. At MEGC’s festivals we also use waste stream bin covers to promote and educate festival patrons about waste separation which has already led to great outcomes on general waste being diverted from landfill.”

“MEGC is committed to continuing to find ways to reduce the amount of waste from our festivals that ends up in landfill,” said Ms McCormick. “We are proud to work with Clean Vibes to embrace new recycling and other sustainable initiatives, and encourage our festivals fans to do their part to reduce the impact on our environment as well.”

Rise in alternative investments – classic cars soar in value

Now the third highest performing luxury investment category, with a 190% return*, the classic car market is experiencing a boom as alternative investments – along with coins and whisky – are on the rise.

Shannons Auctions holds four major auctions a year, with over 650 vehicles on offer and has seen a 15% jump in volume from last year.

National auctions & external relations manager, Christophe Boribon, says collector vehicles have soared in value because they’re considered by many as a tangible asset.

“They are something you can actually use, be enjoyed with family and friends and open you up to a community of like-minded vehicle enthusiasts. You can’t do that with shares,” said Mr Boribon.

“There’s also been a new wave of interest in the classics,” he added.

“Recently a cherry red 1997 Porsche 911 (993) Carrera S Coupe sold for $303,000. Built-in limited numbers with worldwide production reaching just 3,714 units, it is one of the rarer 993 models.”

“These cars have become hugely collectible in recent years growing in value by more than 7.5% each year since being launched in 1994.”

“We have seen a number of Australians redirecting the cash they might have spent on overseas trips into the cars market.”

Mark Duckworth, the director of festivals and events at Major Events Gold Coast, which is behind one of the largest classic car gatherings in the country, Cooly Rocks On, agreed.

“Classic cars really maintain their value, or even rise in value over time. In 1969 you could buy a brand-new Dodge Charger Daytona for less than $5,000. This exact car is now worth close to $100,000,” says Mr Duckworth.

“These vehicles quickly become even more valuable if there were only a limited number of that particular model car made, or if the company has shut down,” he adds.

“It’s also often about the memory and attachment to a certain timepiece and era. It could be a motor vehicle or a comic book – people like to capture a memory and hang onto it.”

Shannons Insurance arm is also seeing the strong appetite for classic cars remain steady, particularly some of the Aussie and American muscle varieties.

Business Development Manager Phil Ross says demand for insurance is flat out as people see cars as a safer and more enjoyable market to be involved in.

“There are plenty of car enthusiasts who see vehicles as a better investment than shares. You can’t drive your Woolies shares to Cooly Rocks On in June but you can drive your Hot Rod or Muscle car,” said Mr Ross.

Shannons Hub Cooly Rocks On 2022
Shannons Hub Cooly Rocks On 2022







Mr Boribon from Shannons Auctions, says there was the potential for classic car values to slide during the onset of Covid-19, but the opposite actually happened.

“Many experts view part of the collector market as a solid investment, the vehicles that were produced in smaller numbers, special coachwork, or high powered whether from the 1950s or on more modern classics from 2000s, many have seen great growth in recent years.”

“We’re seeing new and different types of buyers – there are the people who don’t have the time to do restorations and want something that’s restored and functional, there are the buyers with emotional attachment to a certain vehicle – but there are also people who love to tinker with their vehicles, adding value, in their garage.”

In the last two years Mr Duckworth said they have seen a big increase in the number of people attracted to classic cars with record numbers attending Cooly Rocks On, Australia’s largest nostalgia festival, held on the Gold Coast each June.

“Our fan base has really grown, there were record crowds last year,” he added.

“Australians have a wonderful connection to the music, and culture of yesteryear. Holden cars, rock’n’roll and trips to the beach remain some of the fondest memories of decades gone by.”

The event attracts nearly 1000 participating classic, hot rod and muscle cars. While the Show ‘N’ Shine display, spanning nearly two kilometres, attracts car enthusiasts from across the country and from overseas.

“It’s amazing to see so many beautiful cars in one space, the attention to detail and the story from the owners makes it so special. From Go Go Mobiles to Mustangs and everything in-between it’s one of the country’s biggest showcases of classic cars.”

“The feeling you get from driving a car can take you back to a certain time in your life. It talks to so many different people about a time of innocence – family holidays during the 1960s, reminding us of simpler times.”

Some of the highest-earning classic cars include:

  • Flash and fun: Built in limited numbers with worldwide production reaching just 3,714 units making the cherry red 1997 Porsche 911 (993) Carrera S Coupe one of the rarest 993 models. Sold late last year for $303,000.
  • Classic Australian models: Even the traditional Holden Kingswood can fetch about $50,000, a Ford Cortina $70,000 and a Ford Escort around $30,000.
  • Vintage four-wheel drives: These cars still pack a punch with something like a simple 1971 Toyota Landcruiser FJ40 worth almost $120,000. The FJ40 was Toyota’s best-selling model in the US between 1961 and 1965 and it solidified the brand’s reputation for building strong, reliable vehicles.

Shannons Insurance is to be a supporting partner of Cooly Rocks On 2023.

The world’s best beach volleyball players to go head-to-head on the Gold Coast

When it comes to beach volleyball, Coolangatta’s iconic wide golden beach has become synonymous with the sport. This month Australia’s best volleyball players will go head-to-head, and take on the world’s top teams, in a showcase of skill on the sand over 10 days.

One of the jewels of the southern Gold Coast coastline, Coolangatta beach played host to the first ever Commonwealth Games beach volleyball matches in 2018, and since then has become the new home for Australia’s national beach volleyball championships.

From 24 March through to 2 April, Volleyslam 2023 Festival will take over Coolangatta beach with four separate championship events across 10 days including the Australian Beach Volleyball Championships, the Australian Youth Beach Volleyball Championships, the Australian Beach Volleyball Schools Cup, and crowd favourite – the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour – Futures event.

Major Events Gold Coast CEO Jan McCormick said the annual Volleyslam festival celebrates the best of the best in beach volleyball with some incredible action that you definitely want to be beachside for.

“Beach volleyball is one of those exhilarating sports that you can’t help but get invested in as a spectator, to be able to see the world’s best on one of Australia’s most beautiful beaches, is a not-to-be-missed experience both for volleyball enthusiasts and for the general public,” said Ms McCormick.

In 2022, Major Events Gold Coast in partnership with Tourism and Events Queensland resigned a deal with Volleyball Australia to keep the beach volleyball events on the Gold Coast for another three years.

“Securing these premier national events for Coolangatta until at least 2025 is a major coup for the Gold Coast, both from a reputational and economic point of view for the city but also for many other reasons as we head towards the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games,” said Ms McCormick.

“Hosting the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour event in particular not only showcases our natural stadiums to a global audience of potential event organisers but also helps inspire a generation of up-and-coming local volleyball stars providing them with the opportunity to mingle with the best in the world and aspire to be on the beach competing for Gold come 2032.”

Volleyball Australia CEO Andrew Dee said it is fantastic to return to a beach that’s become synonymous with world-class beach volleyball events.

“Last year was the first time we hosted the Volleyslam festival with all four major events which was a resounding success,” Dee said. “To have the Scape Australian Youth Beach Volleyball Championships and Scape Australian Beach Schools Cup on at the same time as the Australian Championships and Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour creates an incredible opportunity for Australia’s future beach volleyball stars to learn from some of the best in the world.

“We’re excited to be back on iconic Coolangatta Beach this month to provide participation opportunities for beach volleyballers at all levels. With the Gold Coast set to host the beach volleyball competition for the 2032 Olympic Games, it provides us with a great opportunity to bring together the next generation of talent as we continue to provide opportunities to identify talent that have the potential to represent Australia on the world stage,” he said.

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said he is excited to see the energy, passion and excitement of this great sport back on the beaches of Coolangatta.

“It’s fantastic to see VolleySlam return to Coolangatta,” said Mayor Tom Tate. “With four separate events to be held across the festival, we can expect some fierce competition as teams strive to take home a championship trophy.

“Major Events Gold Coast and Volleyball Australia deserve applause for bringing together the country’s best beach volleyballers again in 2023. It’s showtime and it’s free for spectators so don’t miss a minute of the action.”

Volleyslam 2023 kicks off with the Australian Beach Volleyball Championships on Friday 24th March and culminates with the World Beach Pro Tour Futures event on from 29 March – 2 April.

All Volleyslam events are free to attend.

The World Beach Pro Tour Futures and Volleyslam Gold Coast is supported by Major Events Gold Coast and the Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland and features on the It’s Live! in Queensland events calendar.

Cooly Rocks On unveils hugely anticipated entertainment lineup

Lovers of music, motors and the lifestyle of yesteryear are preparing for another not-to-be-missed event on the annual calendar as Australia’s largest nostalgia festival announces its much anticipated entertainment lineup.

This year’s Cooly Rocks On, to be held on the Gold Coast from 7-11 June, will feature a host of big international performers, along with Australia’s favourite rock ‘n’ roll, rockabilly and swing artists from across the country.

Arguably one of the biggest rockabilly bands in the world, Swedish group The Go Getters, will be one of the headliners of the 2023 program. The trio who formed 35 years ago is sure to keep the toes tappin’ all night as they make their first appearance in Australia in more than a decade.

Japan’s Johnny Pandora has been breaking hearts on the rock ‘n’ roll and rockabilly scene since he was 18 years old, performing nearly 200 shows a year. Now the singer, bassist, guitarist and dancer is ready to wow audiences in Coolangatta, as part of this year’s lineup.

New Zealand’s original retro rockers Boom! Boom! Deluxe are set to fill the dancefloor, playing a mix of authentic 1950s and 60s classics laced with clever re-workings of modern songs in the rock ‘n’ roll styles.

“This year’s festival is going to be bigger and better than ever with five international acts invited to perform, as well as dozens of acts from across the country filling the streets with the sound and energy we have become famous for,” said Major Events Gold Coast Director of Festivals and Events Mark Duckworth.

Fan favourites from Melbourne, The Rechords, will perform their unique blend of bluegrass western swing, hillbilly and rock ‘n’ roll.

Adelaide’s hottest seven-piece 50s swing, rhythm and roots group Lucky Seven will set the mood at the Cooly Rocks On Moonlight Swing Dance, as well as channelling the original rock ‘n’ roll genius of the legendary Bill Haley with their outfit The Lucky Comets: The Sounds Of Bill Haley.

Queensland’s own Cherry Divine, dubbed the ‘Princess of Rockabilly’, grew up listening to records on her Grandad’s gramophone. Her love for rockabilly has taken her around the world and she can’t wait to return to Cooly Rocks On.

Headlining in the Elvis Precinct this year is the USA’s Shawn Klush, who’s widely considered the best Elvis Tribute Artist in the world.

For Elvis fans, it doesn’t get much better than this,” said Mark.

Shawn tours extensively around the world performing to sold out shows, but his inaugural Cooly Rocks On appearance will be his first Down Under in five years. The team is so excited to present Shawn at the 2023 festival.”

The critically acclaimed artist was named the first-ever ‘Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist’ by Elvis Presley Enterprises in Memphis and has been described as the “closest thing to The King in concert.”

Cooly Rocks On is also bringing another renowned international Elvis Tribute Artist to the Gold Coast, with an Australian-first performance from Jimmy Holmes (USA), who has taken the industry by storm.

In an unmissable event, Jimmy Holmes and Mark Andrew will present ‘The King Returns to Stage ‘68-’72” in a nod to Elvis’ triumphant return to the live arena after waving goodbye to Hollywood.

For lovers of surf culture and classic rock ’n’ roll car songs, The Australian Beach Boys Show will bring back memories of cruising in coupes and feeling fine in a Chevrolet 409.

Other notable artists performing this year include The Pacific Belles, Issi Dye, Jake & the Cadillacs, Kenny and the Nitro Rockers, Melody Graves and the Hokum Redemption, Peaches & the Alphasonics, Swingabilly Ray and more!

Cooly Rocks On is supported by the Queensland Government, via Tourism and Events Queensland, and is a feature on the It’s Live! in Queensland events calendar.