Bring more light into your life at Riverlight Ulmarra, offering a great day out and an illuminating evening of entertainment in the Clarence Valley.

When? On Saturday 14 May, 2022.

The historic village of Ulmarra is lighting the way with the new river festival, Riverlight Ulmarra. This one-day community cultural festival will showcase the town and the Clarence River through a spectacular display of floating lanterns.

Ulmarra Hotel by Susan Polsen

Lights, Music, Action!

For your entertainment, Riverlight Ulmarra offers live music, food stalls, lantern-making, trash and treasure stalls, vintage farm engine displays, fire twirling and a bar. You can join in the lantern-making workshop from 2.00pm, to make your own ray of light for floating down the river.

The festival centres around illuminated river-based art installations, guided by Master Lantern Maker Phill Relf of IKARA Celebratory Events. Mr Relf has over 20 years’ experience in lantern making for festivals.

“On the night there will be a procession through the village before the lanterns are released into the Clarence River to provide an awe-inspiring and memorable sight…

Riverlight Ulmarra is produced by events specialist, Phil Nicholas of Events Delivered. Mr Nicholas hopes that Riverlight Ulmarra will provide a focal point for Ulmarra, celebrating the beauty of the Clarence River.

“This is a great opportunity to shine a light on the history, stories and characteristics of this charming town. The festival is designed to attract local families as well as visitors from beyond the region,” Mr Nicholas told Coastbeat.

Created by Master Lantern Maker

“With the help of Phill Relf, who has been the creative mind behind many well-known local and interstate lantern festivals, we will be running a series of public workshops in the lead up, to design and build a large, sculptural lantern to head up the parade.

“On the night there will be a procession through the village before the lanterns are released into the Clarence River, providing an awe-inspiring and memorable sight, which we hope to replicate every year.”

A Perfect Day Trip

The festival has been specifically designed to accommodate day trips from nearby regions. Overnight visitors can stay and experience more of the Clarence Valley, with numerous boutique accommodation options.

“We’ve curated a series of itineraries that guide people through half-day, full-day or two-day drives, allowing them to explore the region while here for the festival,” Mr Nicholas said.

“They’re all downloadable from our website and provide suggestions to help people really experience a local’s insight into the Clarence Valley.”

Don’t hide in the dark! Get lit at Riverlight Ulmarra

“These include discovering the many small and unknown hamlets that dot the river, the history of Grafton, and the quirky coastal towns that hark back to a 1950s holiday experience.


Awesome Music

Local musicians have been invited to provide upbeat entertainment to compliment the awe-inspiring and memorable sight of the lantern procession.

The line-up consists of the Downriver Grommets under the tutelage of local music teacher Ryan Enns, and The Enns of the Earth playing everything from bluegrass through to Ed Sheeran. Headlining the event will be the Clarence Valley’s own The Ninth Chapter, plying their trademark funky groove and punchy horns.

“Ulmarra is only an hour’s drive from Coffs Harbour, meaning the festival makes for an easy day trip,” Mr Nicholas said.

Get Ready With A Lantern Kit

“Visitors can get prepared to join the parade by purchasing lantern kits via our website and we post them out with full instructions. They’re simple and fun to make, and they look magical illuminated after dark.”

Don’t hide in the dark! Get lit at Riverlight Ulmarra

For more information and to book tickets visit the Riverlight Ulmarra website.