In this great winter of North West Queensland festivals it was Camooweal’s turn on the weekend.
The 22th annual Camooweal Drovers Festival attracted hundreds of tourists and locals to town though sadly the number of registered drovers is declining each year as the great bush skills are lost to old age and death.
That didn’t stop the town from partying with the traditional street parade and mailman race on Friday before a concert outside the pub.
In a frenzied five team race where one team crashed at the start, the Camooweal Roadhouse team won the race by getting the station name from their drover at the pub just pipping the Herbert Vale team which had led through the race.
A $1000 wasn’t a bad winning return on a few minutes exercise (not to mention one member skulling a beer) with $500 for the team and $500 to charity, in this case the RFDS.
On Saturday the action moved to the Drovers Camp for a weekend of keeping the traditional skills of bronco branding alive.
Mount Isa Mayor Joyce McCulloch said Cloncurry was 150 years old – making it well over 50 years older than Mount Isa.
“It’s communities like Cloncurry and Camooweal that enable communities like Mount Isa,” Cr McCulloch said.
She thanked the committee and drovers camp caretakers Ellen and Paul Finlay for their great work keeping the festival alive.