New festival partnership a win for combating waste

More than 70% percent of all waste generated at this year’s Blues on Broadbeach on the Gold Coast was diverted from landfill thanks to a successful new partnership with waste management provider Clean Vibes.

Just over 37m3 of rubbish was diverted from landfill for recycling and reuse purposes, which equated to 71% of all waste generated from the festival. On top of this, more than 17,000 cans and bottles were recycled through the Containers for Change refund scheme.

Major Events Gold Coast CEO Jan McCormick said the results were very encouraging.

“To be able to divert from landfill more than 70% of the waste generated during our Blues on Broadbeach festival is a great win for the environment and we’re confident we can keep on improving our waste management practices across all MEGC’s festivals,” said Ms McCormick.

In March, Clean Vibes become the Official Cleaning and Waste Management Services Provider for all four of MEGC’s festivals in 2023, including Blues on Broadbeach, Cooly Rocks On and the upcoming SPRINGTIME and Groundwater Country Music Festival.

Some of the initiatives that have been introduced at MEGC’s festivals are waste sorting onsite and implementing the can and bottle return scheme. Clean Vibes also use waste stream bin covers to promote and educate festival patrons about waste separation, and the recent results show festival fans are getting on board to help do their bit to reduce waste.

There was so much organic waste collected and sorted onsite that the crew had to take over general waste bins for organic waste.

Clean Vibes National Operations Manager Nick Viner said the Blues on Broadbeach results were a great outcome for an unfenced free music festival layout.

“Blues on Broadbeach for 2023 was a huge success on the sustainability front with Clean Vibes working very closely with all stakeholders onsite to ensure that we could get the best results possible!” said Mr Viner. “With all vendors and bars onsite implementing compostable packaging, our team on ground could guarantee that all compostable products onsite were verified and approved for disposal through our onsite organic waste streams.”

Implementing the Containers for Change recycling scheme at the festival proved to be another win.

“Just over 17,000 eligible cans and bottles were processed for the Containers for Change program on top of our 71% of recycled or repurposed material,” Mr Viner said.

Due to this year’s Blues on Broadbeach results, next year Clean Vibes will look to order a 25m skip bin for organic waste, something that has never been done at one of MEGC’s festivals before.

The waste results were equally promising from MEGC’s Cooly Rocks On festival held in Coolangatta in June. The Clean Vibes report showed over 20% more waste was diverted from landfill in 2023 compared to 2022.

“As our festivals grow in popularity, we are faced with 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 continually improving our practices when it comes to sustainable waste management. We also want to make sure our festivals don’t have a negative environmental impact on the beautiful locations we deliver them in.”

Saturday Night cruising returns to Cooly Rocks On

Yesteryear rolled back into Coolangatta for Cooly Rocks On with the long-awaited return of the beloved Saturday Night Car Cruise.

The sold-out event saw 250 classics, hot rods, muscle cars and more cruise through the streets of the iconic beachside destination, much to the thrill of onlookers.

“We were stoked to successfully bring back the car cruise this year and give enthusiasts another opportunity to show off their pride and joy,” said Major Events Gold Coast Director of Festivals and Events Mark Duckworth.

The highly anticipated Cooly Rocks On Show ‘N’ Shine again proved why it’s an annual drawcard for car enthusiasts from all over the country with almost 900 vehicles on display stretching for two kilometres.

“I am a car head, and this was on the bucket list, I had to get up here from Victoria to have a look. Booking for next year!” – Scott, Car Enthusiast.

The Gold Coast turned on its famous winter sunshine for the tens of thousands of fans who donned their best vintage threads and up dos to take a trip down memory lane over five action-packed days.

“Last year we had record crowds of more than 136,000 and this year felt just as busy if not bigger,” said Mark. People come for the music, the entertainment and of course for the cars, and the attention to detail in the fashion, the Show ‘N’ Shine, it’s what makes this festival such a unique experience that people want to come back for year after year.”

Cooly Rocks On welcomed acts from around Australia and the world, including the artist known as the best Elvis Tribute Artist in the world Shawn Klush (USA), Swedish rockabilly trio The Go Getters and Japan’s master of Samurai rock ‘n’ roll Johnny Pandora just to name a few.

New Zealand’s Che Orton took out the prestigious Cooly Rocks On Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist Contest for 2023 and will now represent the festival at Elvis Week in Memphis, USA later this year.

“Just so happy and proud to be able to represent Cooly Rocks On and Australia in Memphis this August. It’s a dream come true to be able to go back to Graceland.”  – Che Orton, Cooly Rocks On UETA Contest winner.

Brisbane’s Sim Lovett, who grew up in Hong Kong and goes by the name Bunny Boulevard, was crowned this year’s Pin-up Pageant winner.

“The Cooly Rocks On Pin-Up Pageant is the epitome for us girls, it’s not all about winning but about enjoying the process amongst our tight knit and supportive community,” – Sim Lovett, Cooly Rocks On Pin-up Pageant winner.

Lovers of nostalgia filled the streets, restaurants and hotels bringing a welcome boost for the local economy. Accommodation houses reported they were fully booked over the festival and were already three quarters full for next year’s Cooly Rocks On. Restaurants, bars and cafés said they had a bumper five days.

Festival goers were just as ready to dig deep to support the official Charity Partner for Cooly Rocks On, MND and Me Foundation for a chance to win a 1954 Chevrolet Hot Rod Pick Up Truck.

Affectionately known as ‘Daphne’ the bright orange beauty has been restored to its vintage look and feel complete with a brand new V8 engine. More than $50,000 worth of tickets were sold across the festival with all proceeds going directly to Motor Neurone Disease research.

Cooly Rocks On wraps for 2023 with thanks to our Sponsor Family: City of Gold Coast, Tourism and Events Queensland, Gold Coast Airport, Indian Motorcycle, Shannons, Yugambeh Region Aboriginal Corporation Alliance (YRACA), Clean Vibes, EVENTelec and 92.5 Triple M.

Australia’s largest nostalgia festival, Cooly Rocks On, has once again proven why it’s an unmissable annual event for lovers of motors, music and the lifestyle of yesteryear. Get ready for more rock ‘n’ roll, dancing and revving engines this time next year when we do it all again in spectacular fashion from 5-9 June 2024.

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.

Cooly Rocks On welcomes the artist voted the ‘World’s Greatest Elvis’ to the stage in 2023

Australia’s award-winning nostalgia festival, Cooly Rocks On, is preparing to bring something very special to its Gold Coast stages from 7-11 June, that will leave Elvis fans all shook up.

Widely-considered the best Elvis Tribute Artist in the world, the USA’s Shawn Klush will be Taking Care of Business at Cooly Rocks On 2023, as one of the headline acts.

For Elvis fans it doesn’t get much better than this. The critically acclaimed artist was named the first-ever ‘Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist’ by Elvis Presley Enterprises in Memphis, Tennessee, and has been described as ‘the closest thing to the King in concert’.

Born and raised in Pennsylvania, Shawn was also voted the “World’s Greatest Elvis” by 6.5 million international viewers on BBC1 Television in the United Kingdom.

Shawn tours extensively around the world performing to sold out shows, but his Cooly Rocks On headline show will be his first performance in Australia since 2018.

I can’t wait to head on down to the amazing Cooly Rocks On festival in June next year. It will be an absolute honour to treat the Australian fans to a sensational tribute to ‘The King’ – the greatest of all time. I am also excited to check out all the other things, especially the motors that this nostalgic festival has on offer. See you there!” – Shawn Klush

The team is so excited to present Shawn Klush at the 2023 festival,” said Festival Director Mark Duckworth. “He hasn’t performed in Australia for many years so there are plenty of Elvis devotees here who have been awaiting his return. Our Cooly Rocks On fans can expect something very special.”

Cooly Rocks On is also bringing another renowned international Elvis Tribute Artist to Australia in 2023, who has taken the industry by storm.

Jimmy Holmes is an award-winning Elvis Tribute Artist from Demotte, Indiana and is set to enthral crowds in the Elvis Marquee with his performance portraying Elvis in the early 1970s.

Hey Cooly Rocks On Fans! This is Jimmy Holmes coming to you from the US and I’m very excited to be a part of this great festival in 2023. This will be my first time in Australia, and I can’t wait to rock and roll with you all in June. See you soon!” – Jimmy Holmes

The five-day festival held in the iconic beachside destination of Coolangatta not only celebrates the music of yesteryear but the lifestyle and, of course, the motors. Cooly Rocks On has one of Australia’s largest showcases of cars from the 50s, 60s and 70s, including classics, hot rods, customs and muscle cars. While the festival’s Pin-up Pageant attracts entrants from as far afield as the USA and New Zealand.

Produced by Major Events Gold Coast, the festival was recently awarded Gold in the Major Festivals and Events category at the Queensland Tourism Awards.

Record crowds from across Australia and overseas attended the festival in 2022 and with a host of international tribute artists set to take to the stage as well as the best rockabilly, rock’n’roll and swing acts, the 2023 festival is going to be bigger and better than ever.


Cooly Rocks On welcomes new festival partners for 2022

Cooly Rocks On has announced its 2022 Festival Partners with Indian Motorcycle, Celebrity Ink™ and The Strand all signing on to help bring another memorable festival to Coolangatta. 

From 8-12 June the picturesque beachside destination will come alive as Cooly Rocks On celebrates the motors, music and lifestyle of yesteryear.

Indian Motorcycle | Support Partner

Indian Motorcycle, America’s first motorcycle company since 1901, is continuing its reign as the official motorcycle partner for 2022. The brand embodies the nostalgic and historic nature of Cooly Rocks On and Indian Motorcycle will have a place right in the centre of the festival area adjacent to the beach.

More than just a motorcycle display, you can find the Indian Motorcycle HQ on the Coolangatta beachfront across the full five days where they’ll be offering a space for motoring enthusiasts of all types to take a pit stop and gather.

Plus, you’ll also find the Barbering Biker providing live haircut transformations, the latest Indian Motorcycle models, and official merchandise.

Michael Blundo, Indian Motorcycle:

There is a great synergy between both brands, who continue to pay homage to the classics. Cooly Rocks On provides us with the perfect platform to celebrate motors, lifestyle and music.

Celebrity Ink™ | Support Partner

Global tattoo brand, Celebrity Ink™ has signed on as an Official Support Partner for the 2022 festival.

With over 40 locations worldwide and one right in Coolangatta, Celebrity Ink™ will be bringing its unique approach to body art into the heart of Cooly Rocks On, with an onsite activation across the five-day festival.

With tattoos and hot-rod design going together since the inception of the Kustom Kulture, we’re sure Celebrity Ink™ will feel right at home at the festival.

Why not stop by and check out the live tattooing station, or if you’re feeling adventurous, why not roll up your sleeve and get one for yourself.

Lara Nilon, Celebrity Ink™ Coolangatta: 

Like Cooly Rocks On, Celebrity Ink™ encourages all walks of life to celebrate being you and to express your story.

The Strand | Community Partner

The Strand will continue its dance during Cooly Rocks On in 2022.

The shopping centre located in the heart of Coolangatta will again be a hub for the community and attendees of Cooly Rocks On this year, with festivities taking place across the full five days.

The Strand will give Cooly Rockers the opportunity to brush up on their dance skills with dance workshops held daily featuring a variety of dance lessons including rock ’n’ roll, swing, rockabilly, lindy hop, balboa, line dancing and more.

What’s more, the Strand will also host meet and greets with a few of the Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist contestants from Friday to Sunday, giving you the chance to mingle with your favourite Tribute Artists.

Jasmine Huynh, The Strand at Coolangatta:

From the Cooly Rocks On festival to The Strand at Coolangatta – every step you take will have you travelling to the tunes and dances of yesteryear!

The Cooly Rocks On team would like to welcome the 2022 Festival Partners and thank them for helping to make Cooly Rocks On 2022 the festival it is.

Surf Lifesaving Queensland is our 2021 Cooly Rocks On charity partner

Major Events Gold Coast is excited to announce Surf Lifesaving Queensland as the charity partner of the 2021 Cooly Rocks On.

It’s a partnership that resonates with our 50s, 60s and 70s nostalgia festival, as Coolangatta has had a long association with Surf Lifesaving Queensland.

For instance, did you know that Coolangatta is essentially the birthplace of SLSQ with the first recorded rescue in Queensland being at Coolangatta in 1909 and the first Queensland surf lifesaving club known as Tweed Heads & Coolangatta, being established just a few years later 1911?

After patrolling and protecting the Coolangatta beach for over 100 years and with our festival bookended by both the Coolangatta and Greenmount Surf Lifesaving Clubs, it seemed only fitting that we would support SLSQ as our nominated charity for the 2021 Cooly Rocks On

CEO David Wimpey said:

“Surf Life Saving Queensland is proud to be Cooly Rocks On’s charity partner in 2021. From Friday June 11 – Sunday June 13, SLSQ will have a merchandise stall, selling their limited-edition Hawaiian shirt. All proceeds from the event go back to SLSQ whose members keep thousands of lives safe on Gold Coast beaches every year.  Keep an eye out for the iconic red and yellow uniform, as volunteers will also be collecting donations for our clubs.”

Aside from supporting an incredibly important Queensland organisation, this partnership gives Major Events Gold Coast and Cooly Rocks On, the chance to give back to the local community, provide a new platform to profile Surf Lifesaving Queensland and a significant event for SLSQ to engage with attendees and fundraise.

Also joining our Cooly Rocks On family of partners is The Strand at Coolangatta.  Located directly across the beach and alongside the Shannons Show ‘N’ Shine, The Strand has a dynamic mix of fashion, surfwear, supermarkets, gifts and homewares, so you’re sure to find something special to take home after your visit to Cooly.

Anyone attending the festival can swing into The Strand and head up to the first floor where they can watch or take part in The Strand Dance Workshops. Attendees can learn rock’n’roll, swing, rockabilly, balboa and more.

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


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