Newspaper article Gympie Times, The Qld.

AND THE RAIN CAME DOWN Muster Plans for 35th Year; Saturday Night Torrent Fails to Dampen Muster Spirits or Success

Newspaper article Gympie Times, The Qld.

AND THE RAIN CAME DOWN Muster Plans for 35th Year; Saturday Night Torrent Fails to Dampen Muster Spirits or Success

Article excerpt

Craig Warhurst

AN HOUR-long torrential downpour turned the Muster Main Stage into a swamp Saturday night but that didn't deter indie pop band Sheppard putting on a once-in-lifetime show.

Diehard Muster fans donned Driza-bones, plastic sheeting and tarps to stay dry while sibling vocalists Amy and George Sheppard embraced the moment, skipping and singing the entire length of the open stage in the rain.

Backstage it was commented to the six piece band, "You just went up in everyone's estimation by 1000%" to which rhythm guitarist Jason Bovino beamed response was "Maaate... we just loved it."

The Muster site was hammered by rain Saturday night.

Nearby Imbil received 36mm in the storm.

26mm fell at Borumba Dam, 19mm at Kandanga and 28mm at Dagun but for people camping in the Amamoor Creek State Forest it felt like a lot more.

Rivers of water washed across the campsites with many campers spending Sunday drying out personal belongings but that didn't deter most Muster lovers from enjoying the entertainment Sunday.

Over the weekend the fans took in 217 hours of entertainment, by 140 artists who performed 350 shows across seven stages.

One of those fans was Tasmanian Senator Jacqui Lambie, who by all accounts had a great time at the Muster.

Ms Lambie was spotted all around the Muster site posing for photos with well wishers.

One woman even did her make-up beside Ms Lambie in high-end Banjo's campsite.

Muster organisers are hoping this year's event pushes through the $15 million barrier raised for the community and charity.

At the special sponsors function, run by Apex in the VIP tent on Saturday afternoon, Gympie Mayor Mick Curran and Apex president Nathan O'Neill told how important the Muster was for the community and how 1400 volunteers and 40 community organisations help pull the event together each year.

Last year the Muster injected close to $6.8 million into the Queensland economy and looks to match that this year.

Muster committee chairman Tony Nolan, also speaking at the function, thanked the Webb family for starting the Gympie Muster on their family property of Thornside.

He said it was vitally important to never forget the origins of the Muster and that he thought it would be a great thing if the Muster's VIP lounge and one of the camping areas were renamed after Webb Brothers' songs Call of the Bellbird and On the Old Veranda. …

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