Smiles and joy unite community at the Festival @ Boyd

Brendan Rees

The Southbank community has come together for an inaugural festival with crowds enjoying the fun and fanfare of live music, food, workshops, stalls, and African drumming.

Held on May 18 at the Boyd Community Hub, the Festival @ Boyd was hailed a resounding success by the event’s organiser and Active Southbank Community Association president Sophy Galbally.

“The Festival @ Boyd defied the elements to deliver an unforgettable day of joy and community spirit. Neither rain nor cold could dampen the enthusiasm of participants, who engaged wholeheartedly in a wide array of activities,” she said.

The event, which was about celebrating sustainability and multiculturalism, featured 30 stalls of recycled and upcycled items, homemade art and craft goods.

There were also performances by cultural dance groups, food vendors, music, children’s activities, a chess tournament, and more.

Ms Galbally said the festival provided “an unforgettable day of joy and community spirit” with many stallholders expressing a keen interest in returning for the next event on August 18. 



“Food stalls reported robust sales, with two vendors selling out entirely – a sign to recruit more foodies for future events,” she said.

“The festival buzzed with energy as families and individuals joined in diverse workshops, from Salsa and African drumming to Bollywood dance sessions.”

Stallholder and Southbank resident Mark Boldiston said it was a memorable experience.

He sold a combination of excess stock from his street art online business called Paste-Up which included greeting cards, bomber jackets, stickers, and lens cleaning cloths, as well as offloading some household items.

“The weather was a bit miserable, but the atmosphere was good,” he said.


The return percentage wise was also really good. I had a lot of fun; it was nice connecting with local residents.


The event also saw 28 volunteers handing out free raffle tickets and coffee vouchers from local businesses including Mr. Summit, Hoff Café, and BearBrass.

The day was made possible thanks to major sponsors including the City of Melbourne, MICM, and INDI, as well as silver sponsors Gigacomm and Melbourne Square/OSK. •


Caption: Festival goers soak up the atmosphere at the Boyd Community Hub. Photos: Hanna Komissarova.

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