March 15 – 17th March 2019 are the dates for this year’s John O’Brien Bush Festival. Arrangements will be a little different this year as all the entertainment on the Saturday will be held in the Narrandera’s beautiful Marie Bashir Park.

We have a great array if artists lined up to entertain along with a couple of workshops.

Of course, no John O’Brien Festival is complete without the man himself, so once again Fr Patrick Hartigan (Noel Stallard) and his talented curate (Greg North) will be on board with their own poetry along with that of John O’Brien.

Geoffrey Graham is back on the list this year along with his brother Ralph. Geoffrey will also be running “Ancient Warriors”, a self-defense class for people from nine to ninety. 

Our regular Poetry Competitions will be held on Friday evening and there is still plenty of time for people to enter into the competitions. Application forms are available on the John O’Brien website ( under “Participation”.

The Tin Shed Rattlers, always very popular, will be at the Charles Sturt Hotel for the jam session on Friday night and invite any budding musicians to bring along their instrument and join in or just to come and listen. They will also be hosting the Bush Dance on Saturday night, this year to be held in the Marie Bashir Park.

A new feature this year will be a licensed pub in the Park so people can relax with a “coldie”  as they listen to the various performers.

The local schools will be entertained by Griego, the Great Magician, on Friday and he will also be in the Park, showing off his talents, on the Saturday. 

There will be a walk-up Poet’s Breakfast on both Saturday and Sunday mornings so we want to see all those budding poets standing up to display their talents.

Talented musicians, Hilary Manning and Alison Warren will be holding a Harp Workshop and Concert on the Saturday and invite all interested people to attend.

Maria Forde is always a popular addition to any Festival, and with her heart divided between Australia and Ireland, is a fitting performer for this event.

But the list does not end there. Also lined up are the our beloved Brenda Joy, Robyn Sykes taking us on a tantalizing trip through versatile verse, Grant Luhrs, talented singer/songwriter and Des Kelly with his “Tales of the Swag”.

On Sunday, we see many of these performers again as they line up to do their own shows ending with the Grand Finale from the John O’Brien Heritage House.


Joan Graham


John O’Brien Festival Committee.