Emerge Festival: Four best events for the ultimate in family fun


Stitwalkers at Emerge Festival

The first day of spring comes with the fresh scent of newly blooming flowers, a cloudless blue sky and companion sunshine, plus a new, fresh energy in the air- and the best way to enjoy everything the new season has to offer is to shake off the winter gloom and step out for some family fun at The Emerge Festival, which offers a HUGE range of world-class events. Here are our faves this year!


When spring officially begins on Sunday 1 September, it’s time to step outdoors and enjoy the gorgeous North Shore in all its glory. And what better way to soak up the sunshine than finding a festival with something to offer everyone in the family – a smorgasbord of visual arts exhibitions, live entertainment, film and music performances, kids’ and youth events, cultural and community celebrations and more. Here are five amazing events this year’s famous Emerge Festival offers.

Girl holding ice cream at festival

Step out for some fun at The Emerge Festival, which offers a HUGE range of events

A unicorn ponty at Emerge Festival

Kids’ and youth events, cultural celebrations and more

Two dogs on voloured boxes at Pet Festival

From doggy fashion parades to pet workshops, there’s plenty to do with your furry friends!

1. The StreetFair

  • When: Saturday 7 September | 10.30am
  • Where: The Concourse, Chatswood
  • Cost: Free

The StreetFair, on Saturday 7 September, at Chatswood is a chance to watch a passing parade of over 1000 people show off their costumes and dance! As the North Shore’s biggest street party, get ready to experience performances from amazing bands on multiple stages, taste food from around the world at stalls lining up the streets, view the 1000 plus member parade, discover the interactive zone for kids and much more.

We recommend these highlights:

  • Magical Lane – a fantasy world for younger children, including unicorn rides, farm animals and a jumping castle
  • Chatswood Mall – circus, cosplay, K-pop and beatboxing performances
  • Rock climbing wall – Anderson Street, free
  • Kidzone Stage – performances from the North Shore’s best dance schools
  • StreetFair Arcade – Join the Australian Esports League and play Just Dance, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Mario Tennis Aces, Tekken 7 or Asphalt 9 on your mobile with Gameloft
Emerge Festival

The StreetFair is a chance to watch over 1000 people show off their costumes and dance!

Musicians playing in a street parade

The StreetFair is a chance to watch over 1000 people show off their costumes and dance!

A crowd of young dancers before a show

The Emerge Festival is a smorgasboard of entertainment, youth events, cultural events and more

2. Pet Festival

  • When: Sunday 24 November | 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
  • Where: OH Reid Memorial Oval, Reid Drive, Chatswood West. This Festival is just 7 min drive from Chatswood station with free street parking or use your Opal pass and take Bus 259 towards Macquarie Centre or catch the 256 loop (every two hours).
  • Cost: Free

The Pet Festival is a huge day out, full of treats and activities for pets and human companions. From doggy fashion parades to pet workshops, there’s plenty to do with your furry friend. Don’t have a pet? No worries! Simply enjoy a day out surrounded by and getting to know a wonderful variety of animals.

  • 101 Dalmatians jumping castle
  • Doggy Fashion Parade
  • Free caricatures of pets and their humans to take home
  • Pet ambulance demonstration
  • Talks by vets and experts on the best pet care, nutrition & behavioural problems
  • Large off-lead area for your dog to socialise
  • International food market for the humans
  • Archipaws finalist and people’s choice awards presentation
Dogs competing at the Pet Festival

The Pet Festival is a huge day out, full of treats and activities for pets and human companions.

Dogs performing tricks at Pet Festival

Don’t have a pet? No worries! Simply enjoy a day out surrounded by a variety of animals

Grooming and showing dogs for prizes

Don’t forget the drawcard event- the Doggy Fashion Parade for furry friends fashion!

3. Matsuri Japan Festival

  • When: Saturday 14 September | 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
  • Where: Chatswood Mall, Chatswood
  • Cost: Free

Japan Club of Sydney presents the Matsuri Japan Festival, a free one day event celebrating diversity and multicultural community spirit.

Experience Japanese cultural performances including dances, musical bands, choirs, martial arts demonstrations and more. There will be plenty of Japanese food stalls to satisfy your taste buds or enjoy hands on workshops including calligraphy, origami paper folding, tea ceremony and flower arranging.

Japanese cultural performances of dances

Experience Japanese cultural performances including dances, musical bands and martial arts

Two people at workshops including calligraphy, origami paper folding, tea ceremony and flower arranging

There will be Japanese stalls, from artwork and calligraphy to food to satisfy your taste buds

4. Festival Oasis Fun Day

  • When: Fun Day is Thursday 3 October | 10:00 am to 4:00 pm | Ongoing events between 28 September to 13 October
  • Where: The Concourse, Chatswood
  • Cost: Free

Children and teenagers are spoilt for choice this year with a collection of creative, colourful and entertaining events, workshops and activities at the Emerge Festival Oasis. Dig into DIY workshops, a silent disco, LEGO® and slime making workshops, Bollywood dance workshops and lots more. Even Willoughby City Council Mayor Gail Giles-Gidney says there is a huge mix of activities, especially catering to the younger crowd. “We’ve tried to better cater for teenagers and young adults, including video gaming, a rock climbing wall and creative workshops,” Mayor Giles-Gidney says.

Schedule (Thursday 3 October)

  • 10am – 4pm – Slime Making
  • 11am – 4pm – Glitter Station
  • 10am – 4pm – Get an early start on your Festive Flags entry (Entry forms and materials available to get creative on the day)
  • 10am – 11am – Circus Skills with Circus Akimbo
  • 11:15am – 12:15am – Breakdancing with Dance Central
  • 12:30pm – 1:30pm – Taekwondo with Chungdo Taekwondo
  • 1:45pm – 2:45pm – Bollywood Moves with Dance Central
  • 3pm – 4pm – Martial Arts and obstacle course with VT1

Other Festival Oasis Events:

Children in headphones at a Slient Disco

Children and teenagers can enjoy a collection of creative, colourful and entertaining events

A crowd dancing at Silent Sounds silent disco

The Silent Disco is an unforgettable experience dancing to music using headphones

Young girl trying out home made slime

Dig into DIY workshops, like LEGO® and the ever-popular slime making workshops


Emerge Festival is the largest cultural and entertainment celebration on Sydney’s North Shore. The month long festival, held annually in September, features visual arts exhibitions, live entertainment, film and music performances, kids’ and youth events, cultural and community celebrations and more. See the full list of events and find out more at The Emerge Festival website.

 


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