Flinders University is calling all explorers to experience their spring garden of fun, education and entertainment!
Get ready to meet the animals, roll around in the ball pit and get those thumbs green, because once again Flinders University have partnered with Nature Play SA to cultivate a packed program of free activities and experiences for the whole family to enjoy this October!
Come and be amazed by the weird, wacky and exciting wonders of science live on stage, construct your own cubby house overlooking the picturesque lake, or brew your own nature potion… SpringFest is a great day for all kids big and small!
This is the perfect day out for the family to enjoy the wonderful Flinders University grounds and a range of free activities!
This day will be jam-packed with activities including:
Thinking Caps Science Show
Interactive Animal Shows
Two stages featuring live music
Arts and crafts
Activities are free and so is parking.
Keep reading for more information on the Spring Fest program below!
Artists on the Main Stage
Amelia Ryan is a multi-award-winning Cabaret Artist, Writer, Presenter, Mentor and Mum. A Musical Theatre Actress by trade (Victorian College of the Arts), she swapped ‘Song and Dance’ for ‘Comedy and Cabaret’, when she realised her ability to do a time-step (or ANY step) paled in comparison to her knack for cracking a quip.
Adam Page is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, music educator and record producer based in Adelaide, South Australia. Known widely for his critically acclaimed solo multi-instrumental looping performances, Page has carved his path internationally as a composer. He has written major works for the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra (which he has also conducted), the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Wellington, Zephyr Quartet and has collaborated with John Psathas, NZ composer of the 2004 Athens Olympics ceremony music.
Page’s other musical collaborations stretch far and wide, working with artists and groups such as The Australian String Quartet, Slava Grigoryan, Noel Gallagher, Katie Noonan, Riki Gooch, Jamie MacBen Todd, The Wizard Tone Art Orchestra, The Shaolin Afronauts, 1.1 Immermann, Ross McHenry, Thomas Oliver, The Adelaide Sax Pack, Darren Percival, Mal Webb, Zephyr Quartet, Lisa Tomlins and Dr. Chandrakant Sardeshmukh. He has also recorded with artists such as Electric Wire Hustle, Julien Dyne, Julia Deans, Mark de Clive-Lowe, Christoph El’ Truento, Oisima, Spook City, Ben Todd, The Shaolin Afronauts, Nico Suave and Dave Whitehead (recording various sounds for The Hobbit films).
Founder and Director of Bey Dance, Liz Calahan is about empowering and encouraging people to engage with each other through dance.
Working with Make A Wish foundation Liz has taught dance to children that want to be on stage or find the confidence to dance ‘like everyone is Watching’ which was her aptly named show at this years ‘Dream Big Festival.’
Bortier sings messages of peace, anti-poverty, connections, resilience, and tolerance – communicating across boundaries and countries. His unifying lyrics convey strong messages for humanity while his dynamic live performances are exhilarating, delivered with power, grace and a sense of humour. Bortier’s music is unique and irresistible – making a significant contribution and progression to World Music.
Bortier Okoe has performed around the world, and is revered as one of the most talented multi-instrumentalists in the African music genre. Well-known for his extraordinary musical gifts and exciting innovations.
Multi-talented emerging singer-songwriter Nathan May descends from the Arabana, Yawuru and Marridjabin clans. Nathan writes in memory of his friends and family and as a reminder that there’s always hope. He sings with a wide-open smile from deep within his soul and has an innate ability to craft songs and express feelings of wide appeal to a broad audience that are way beyond his 24 young years. Nathan has recently been nominated and a finalist for the South Australian Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander Artist of the Year Award.
Activities: Hub | SpringFest
The Collections Project: Jake Holmes
Screen Printing Workshop
Activity: Have a go at making your own hand screen printed poster with South Australian artist Jake Holmes. Pick out designs and experiment with text, shapes, colour, layers and textures to make a poster of your own.
Artist Bio: Jake Holmes is an Adelaide based visual artist working across a variety of mediums including; screen printing, mural painting, illustration, audio and collage. Jake is currently in residency at Flinders University and will respond to the University’s extensive collection of political posters, one of most diverse poster collections in the country.
Jake Holmes is well known as the printmaker behind the rainbow ‘C’mon Aussie C’mon’ posters. In collaboration with street artists Peter Drew, they transformed the famous cricket anthem into an iconic image in support of Australian marriage equality. This has also transformed into a poster to support the ‘Change the date‘ movement, in collaboration with artist Elizabeth Close. He is also the cofounder of PRINT CULT and Tooth and Nail studio and gallery, a city-based communal studio which opened in 2011 and ran for seven years. “The opportunity to spend time with and research important political works, particularly from recent South Australian history, through my own practice is incredibly exciting.”
Activity: Learn a new relaxing and engaging handicraft. Basket weaving is a creative, social and meditative process, as any maker will tell you, being mindful throughout the creative process is just as important as the product itself. Discover the joy of this ancient craft, while creating something with your own hands.
Artist Bio: Lakun Mara is an Aboriginal owned business run by Sonya Rankine, a Ngarrindjeri, Narungga, Ngadjuri woman of South Australia. Lakun Mara key focus is cultural revival and maintenance of traditional Ngarrindjeri weaving techniques and cultural practice.
Activities: Anchor Court Stage |SpringFest
The Bone Detectives
Activity: Ever wondered how palaeontologists can identify an animal just from its bones? The Bone Detectives is a casual, fun and interactive lecture that uses modern Australian animals to give a little perspective on how a palaeontologist would look at prehistoric creatures. Professor Flint will even sing a song or two.
Artist Bio: Heaps Goods Productions Creative Director, Michael Mills has written, directed, produced and appeared in many shows as a variety of characters, as well as himself, during the Australian Festival for Young People, the Adelaide Fringe Festival, at Adelaide, Melbourne and Taronga Zoos, the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, the S.A. Museum, the S.A. Maritime Museum, and at hundreds of schools and kindergartens. He has performed his shows to sell-out crowds at the Royal Sydney Botanic Garden. He has also acted as an Artist in Residence in several schools, creating musical productions with the students. Michael wrote songs and music for, and was a regular presenter, on Channel 7’s national children’s television show, “The Book Place” throughout it’s final series. He has also appeared on a number of other local and national television shows in his capacity as a children’s writer and performer.
Flinders University STEM Outreach
Activity: Do you want to learn how to make liquid nitrogen ice cream or explore the Lizard Ecology room in search of 5 ‘lizards’ considering adaptions for survival, lifestyles and habitats. How many lizards can you find before time runs out?
Artist Bio: The Flinders STEM Outreach Program aspires to inspire high school students, teachers and the wider community to understand and enjoy the STEM disciplines of science, computing, engineering, mathematics and the environment. From a hands-on curriculum linked workshop program for students and teachers, to our industry events and participation at expos, conferences, Open Days and a number science related events like Science Alive! You will see the STEM Outreach team making a difference.
Even Extinct Animals have Dental Records
Activity: What do your teeth say about you? Too much sugar, maybe? The same is true of fossils. We can learn what extinct animals ate, if they’d had disease, and how old they were. Using plaster casts, kids will get to a paint a replica Thylacoleo tooth and learn how these fossils can help researchers, museums, and even the general public.
Artist Bio: Palaeontology at Flinders; If you have a passion for uncovering long-buried secrets that deepen our understanding of how life on Earth evolved, Flinders University can turn that passion into a rewarding palaeontology career.
Activities: Nature Play SA
Activity: Explore the lawns and wild spaces over-looking the picturesque lake as you embark on your cubby building adventure! Nature Play SA will be on hand with ropes, hessian and tips to get you started.
Activity: Learn how technology can help you find your way through nature. This activity taps into problem-solving, team-building and creative-thinking skills while promoting physical activity outdoors. Geocaching combines a unique blend of ‘screen time’ and ‘green time’ with children exploring the Flinders University grounds on a high-tech treasure hunt using the best navigation technology available.
Wildlife Displays & Shows
Activity: Discover and learn about our native wildlife with interactive displays and shows from the team at Animal Anonymous. Each display will have very friendly Australian animals such as frogs, pythons, dragons, goannas, skinks, geckos, crocodiles, frogmouths, owls, parrots, squirrel gliders, long-nosed potoroos, rufous bettongs, tiger quolls, southern brown bandicoots, western pygmy possums, fat-tailed dunnarts and quokkas. Displays available all day.
Location: Humanities Courtyard
Nature Potions and Tinkering
Activity: Natural loose parts, pots, pans and crockery set the stage for a creative, open-ended play. Watch your children engage their senses as they experiment with seasonal plants, water, natural play doughs, clay and other earthy mediums in this tactile play experience with Nature Play SA
Location: Humanities Courtyard