The amphitheatre in Wollongong’s Crown Street Mall, that is.


The popular amphitheatre has played host to thousands of events and performances over the years, ranging from local dance groups right through to international singers.

It was unveiled by the city’s then mayor Frank Arkell and former NSW premier Barrie Unsworth in 1986 as the flashy heart of Wollongong’s newly installed mall.

However, the current council decided in late 2011 to advance refurbishment plans for the mall that included the complete removal of the amphitheatre stage to create a clearer line of sight along the length of the mall.

A smaller performance area abutting the northern side of Church Street will be created as part of the refurbishment plans.

I am of two minds about this, as I rather liked the amphitheatre even if it was underused, in my opinion.




At the Kiama Jazz and Blues Festival — 4


Taking a lunch break


One of the many street acts setting up

That is all my pics from Saturday at the Kiama Jazz & Blues Festival. It continued on Sunday with a big concert in the park: see GALLERY: Kiama comes alive with the sound of jazz.

Kiama’s three-day Jazz and Blues Festival was hot in more ways than one at the weekend, with thousands of people filling the town’s streets and parks to hear genre-bending sounds.

At yesterday’s all-day concert in Hindmarsh Park, the midday sun forced many spectators to sit under trees for shade. But it didn’t stop them cheering loudly from any patch of shade they could find.

At restaurants and cafes on nearby Terralong Street, young roaming street performers such as Hot Potato!  caused a stir.

Publicity co-ordinator Eevi Stein said the festival – now in its 26th year – was more successful than ever and the perfect antidote for Kiama residents after the destructive February tornados that had ripped through the town.

‘‘It’s been a well-timed distraction that certainly takes everyone’s mind off everything,’’ she said…

I have, however, some more pics of Kiama itself which I will share over the next day or two.