Over 100 people celebrated biodiversity at Creek Feast!

Published 19th April 2024. Written by Maddison O’Brien

On Saturday 13th April, over 100 people gathered to celebrate our spectacular local biodiversity for the first ever Creek Feast! On the shady banks of Lawson Creek, under the elegant branches of wise old River Red Gums and She Oaks, a mini festival took shape. 

Picture lush green flats bordered by the cool flowing waters of the creek, the site was a spectacular sight, just outside of Mudgee. A foggy morning broke into sunshine as a team of passionate volunteers set up gazebos, decorated lunch tables with beautiful home-grown flowers and greeted guests as they arrived for the highly anticipated day! 

The diverse program was filled with interesting talks, workshops and demonstrations. Highlight talks stimulated open and thoughtful discussion. Uncle Peter Swain accompanied by Emma Syme from North East Wiradjuri co talked about Indigenous land management practices, history and reading the landscape. Guests got the chance to try a Japanese silk dyeing technique called shibori at Laura Fishers ‘Water on Silk’ workshop. The delicate tapestry of silks will be on display at an upcoming exhibition at Kandos Projects. 

Meandering along the Creek Guests got to learn about native fish and habitat, exciting koala research and the intricacies of Biodiversity Conservation Agreements. Local Landcare Coordinator Maddi O’Brien led an eDNA testing workshop and revealed some exciting results from testing done in the Cudgegong River and Lawson Creek. Platypus have been detected in two distinct locations in the Cudgegong River! More results will be shared in next week’s catchment corner. 

Lunch was a joyous event as people sat and listened to the peaceful sounds of the creek. Conversations were flowing. On the menu was a feast of delicious proportions celebrating local producers, complete with local cheeses, meats, bread and, of course, chocolate. And what’s a festival without market stalls? Stalls were bustling with wine tastings, homemade soaps and beauty products and gluten-free pastries for sale. There was plenty to see and do. Local community and environmental groups gathered with their displays; Mid-Western Regional Council was a hit with their interactive watershed model demonstrations. 

After lunch, the talks continued, with topics such as the power of collaboration and landscape hydration. Local artists exhibited new works that invited audience participation and got people talking and thinking. In the end we were farewelled by a song by Emma Syme and a humble circle bringing it all home. It was a momentous day of celebration, and the day would not have been possible without the support of the NSW Biodiversity Conservation Trust which funded the day. 

Thank you to everyone involved in making this a day to remember! Look out for more unique events coming up at watershedlandcare.com.au/events.