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Arts and Culture In Coffs Harbour - a Guide to the Creative Community

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The Coffs Coast region is home to a thriving cultural scene. You'll find independent artists' galleries dotted throughout the area, and a range of festivals happening through the year. The City Hall has devised 3 culture trails, which are a great way of discovering what the region has to offer. Ask at the Tourist Office.

Performing arts in Coffs Harbour

 

The epicentre of the Coffs Coast performing arts scene is the Jetty Memorial Theatre in Coffs Harbour. The heritage-listed venue, built in 1928, plays host to both community performance groups and touring companies. As well as theatre, you can also catch concerts, films, and dance performances.

 

Jetty Memorial Theatre

 

This theatre has a bar and a spacious deck where you can relax before the show. Located in the buzzing Jetty precinct, you’ll have a big choice of venues for drinks or dinner afterwards.

 

337 Harbour Drive, Coffs Harbour NSW 2450Tel: +61 2 6652 8088

 

Jetty Memorial Theatre website

The visual arts in Coffs Harbour

 

The Coffs Coast has a thriving visual arts scene, with artists drawn to the area by its inspiring natural beauty and easygoing vibe. Bellingen’s hippy heritage has made it a flourishing creative centre. You’ll find small galleries spread throughout the region, showing works by local and visiting artists. The Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery hosts exhibitions that change every 6 weeks. You can also often find artists selling their work at local markets.

 

The Bunker Cartoon Gallery

 

Australia’s only cartoon gallery is housed in a World War II bunker, and has a collection of nearly 20,000 works. You can catch changing exhibitions of Australian and international cartoonists.

 

John Champion Way (off City Hill Drive), Coffs Harbour NSW 2450. Tel: +61 2 6651 7343

 

The Bunker Cartoon Gallery website

 

Nexus Gallery

 

The Nexus Community Gallery is in the Old Butter Factory just outside Bellingen, which also hosts craft galleries, shops, and a café. It organizes a changing program of exhibitions by artists from the region.

 

The Old Butter Factory, 1 Doepel Street, Bellingen NSW 2454. Tel: +61 2 6655 9222

 

Nexus Gallery website

 

Aboriginal culture in Coffs Harbour

 

The Coffs Coast is home to the Gumbaynggirr indigenous people, and you’ll find many important sacred sites in the area, including Muttonbird Island, Look at Me Now Headland at Emerald Beach, and Bongil Bongil National Park near Sawtell. Yarrawarra Cultural Centre is dedicated to preserving and showcasing the culture of these traditional owners.

 

Yarrawarra Cultural Centre

 

The Yarrawarra Cultural Centre is home to the Wadjar Regional Aboriginal Art Gallery. It has a shop where you can pick up locally produced crafts, jewelry, and art. There’s also a café where you can taste delicious, contemporary Aboriginal cuisine.

 

170 Red Rock Road, Corindi Beach NSW 2456. Tel: +61 2 6640 7104

 

Yarrawarra Cultural Centre website

 

Festivals around Coffs Harbour

 

There’s almost always something going on in the Coffs Coast cultural scene, with an array of festivals scattered throughout the calendar. September has Curryfest in Woolgoolga, as well as the Buskers Festival in Coffs Harbour, Bellingen’s Readers and Writers Festival happens in June, and its classical music festival is in September.

 

Dorrigo Folk and Bluesgrass Festival

 

This October festival kicks off with the Community HoeDown Dance. It is an intimate and friendly gathering, with some of the best acoustic acts from Australia and around the world.

 

Various locations. Dorrigo Folk and Bluesgrass Festival website

 

Bello Winter Music

 

This cozy Bellingen festival has a diverse lineup of international, national, and local roots and pop acts. As well as music, there’s street theatre, workshops, and free events.

 

Various locations. Tel: +61 2 6684 6195

 

Bello Winter Music website