Parkes Elvis Festival has been running for 28 years and today is still going strong and remains very popular with the locals and visitors and especially so for the regulars who go to Parkes year in, year out. It's my first time attending the festival this year and I must say, I had a great time. Perhaps suffering a little over exposure of Elvis in a single long weekend.

Arriving in Parkes on Friday was a very hot day made worse by a gusty sand storm later at night. Saturday and Sunday were much better with temperature in the low 30's and cool at night. You just can't missed the feeling that it was an Elvis festival in Parkes as everywhere you walk, a lot of shops were decorated with Elvis posters and costumes etc. The main street obviously had an Elvis theme and it's PA system was playing songs by Elvis all day and all night long. Many locals and visitors joined in the fun by dressing up as Elvis or as Priscilla, his wife. The main venues with live entertainment and dancing were the big open stage in the park right in the town centre, the League Club and the Services Club but there also several smaller stages sprinkled all over the main street. Several local pubs also got into the act by offering Elvis theme entertainment.

Yes, there were many Elvis tributes for the whole weekend and some of them were incredibly professional and great stage performers. The tributes seem to be mainly Las Vegas Elvis but there were also acts showing Elvis the rocker in the 1950's and early 60's as well as Hollywood Elvis. There was also an incredibly funny "Indian" Elvis tribute by Rick Charles which although in parts some of the jokes were political incorrect but nevertheless I thoroughly enjoyed the show.

The street parade took place on Saturday morning which was one of the festival's key events. On Sunday, there was the Elvis Gospel service held in the park. The very popular and highly entertaining Sydney Swingkatz dance troupe was also there on the weekend with their rocknroll dance showcase performances.

Parkes Elvis Festival no doubt was all about celebrating Elvis but there were other tributes too including the Grease movie, Roy Orbison, Neil Diamond etc.I thought it was a great idea to include other supporting acts to add to the range of entertainment available during the festival. Talking to people who had attended the festivals in the past, it seems numbers were down this year no doubt caused by the bush fire situation especially in NSW, Victoria and South Australia. Nonetheless, I feel it was a great festival and everyone who attended had a wonderful time.