Despite some pre-event negative publicity and comments on social media about the changes that were to take place for Ballarat Beat, I nonetheless went ahead to attend this rock n roll music and dance festival. I am so glad I went as I had a great time on the weekend listening and dancing to some of Melbourne's favourite bands which included Scotty Baker, Jukebox Racket, Louis King & the Liars Klub, Atomic Hi tones, Hank Jalopy Demons, Itchy Fingers and Robyn & the Rancheros.

And of course it was more than just music and dancing. There was 1950's fashion parade and Miss Pin Up competition which usually draws a big crowd. There was classic cars on display and 1950's merchandise for sale. Rockers were dressed in their 1950's clothing and the vibe in town generally was one of having great fun and catching up with friends from all over Victoria and inter-states.

It was a shame that Lydiard Street was not closed off this year as this was the major focal point for rockers and the general public in past years where bands played on the Lydiard street stage, dancing rock n roll, classic cars display and lots of merchandise stores. Instead, this year the "public" stage was located off the George Hotel's laneway. Public participation from what I can observe was well down from previous years. The Hop Temple bar & restaurant, on the other hand, was rockin' all Saturday afternoon.

There's no doubt it's very hard to stage a music festival year by year and still drawing in the crowds. I hope rockers are ready to provide constructive comments so that the promoters can take note and make those necessary changes to make Ballarat Beat even better for next year. We must all try to support our rock n roll festivals to keeping it alive and vibrant for many more years to come.

Here are some videos I shot during the festival on the weekend......