Music lovers celebrated on the lawns of Jimbour House for the launch of Big Skies 2019, with an exclusive performance by Australian rock legend John Paul Young on Wednesday 14 November.

Established in 2018 by Western Downs Regional Council, Big Skies is a nine-day calendar of events celebrating the sights, sounds, tastes and unique experiences of the Western Downs. Big Skies will commence with the 107th annual running of the Dalby Picnic Races and return with the signature event, Day on the Plain, featuring a stellar cast of Australian performers including Jon Stevens, John Paul Young, Ross Wilson, Deni Hines and Pseudo Echo. Last year close to 3000 music fans packed the amphitheatre of Jimbour Station for Day on the Plain. Camping, a champagne breakfast and country cook-ups also feature in next year’s event calendar.

Western Downs Regional Council Mayor Paul McVeigh said that the region has a reputation for putting on a great show, and Big Skies is setting the bar high. “After the success of the inaugural event, we’re so excited to bring back Big Skies for 2019,” he said. “There’s something for everyone in the event calendar: whether it’s a visit to the Dalby Saleyards to undertake a sale day tour, the ultimate paddock-to-plate experience at Long Lunch in Dalby or Miles, or enjoying the outdoor cinema under the unforgettable night skies of the Jimbour Plains, there is something for everyone. One of the most popular things from last year’s festival was the tour of the majestic Jimbour House. Before this year, Jimbour House has never been open to the public for tours, so we’re very happy to be working with Russell Pastoral Company to offer this experience in 2019. The Day on the Plain line-up is outstanding. I’m really excited about it and know it will be a fantastic day for visitors and locals alike!”

Spokesperson for Economic Development Councillor Donna Ashurst said that Big Skies would put the Western Downs in the spotlight. “It’s no secret that the Western Downs has a lot to offer and Big Skies gives us the opportunity to showcase the best of our region,” she said. It’s the authentic rural experience, the fun, the hospitality and the atmosphere all rolled into one. Come and experience the Western Downs with us.”

Readers also enjoyed this story about Chinchilla’s newest and juiciest addition.