The Mountaingrass Festival is Australasia’s premier bluegrass and old-time music festival. Mountaingrass features concerts of bluegrass, old-time, traditional country and gospel music, along with instrumental workshops and numerous picking sessions. It is an inclusive event, so attendees are encouraged to participate in the workshops, picking sessions, and slow jam sessions. Attendees are also encouraged to perform on the ‘blackboard’ stages. So, if you are a player, bring along your fiddle, guitar, banjo, mandolin, dobro, & double bass, and join in! The 2024 Mountaingrass Festival will be held in Bright, north-eastern Victoria, from the 15th – 17th November. The Music Tour of Victoria & Canberra will include Weekend tickets, which include admission to all Festival events, including concerts and workshops.
John was a secondary school music teacher for 23 years (taught Kylie Minogue). He and his twin brother, Graeme, perform as the country music/easy listening act, The Howie Brothers. John has been operating and leading successful music tours and music cruises for 25 years, including Ireland & Scotland, the US, Australia, NZ, and other parts of the world. John says his & Travelrite’s primary goal, with the music tours (& cruises), is to offer outstanding travel ‘products’, with music as an additional, special focus.
Gill (accordion/piano/ ukulele/mouth organ player from Wangaratta) has played in dance bands most of her life, and knows a million tunes! She will be coming on the tour as a musician and assistant tour manager, as long as we get sufficient bookings. She will be involved in lots of fun-filled informal music sessions with the tour groups.
Wayne is one of Australia’s most successful country music entertainers. Influenced by Slim Whitman and Frank Ifield, his style of yodelling is a real crowd pleaser. Originally from Benalla, Victoria, Wayne moved to Sydney in 1979 to expand his music career and also tour the world. For 25 years Wayne spent part of each year in the USA, sharing stages at Festivals and Fairs with some of country music’s biggest stars, including Merle Haggard, The Statler Brothers, and Mickey Gilley. Wayne is now back living in Benalla, and he is looking forward to the Music Tour of Victoria & Canberra tour group visiting him, and his excellent ‘museum’, in November 2024.
Owen and Ian are well-known country music artists from the Snowy Mountains region of north-eastern Victoria/southern NSW. They are excellent artists in their own right but also, like many brothers, they sound great singing vocal harmonies together. They have both released many successful albums. Owen has won many songwriting awards and has been nominated for Male Vocal of the Year, in Tamworth, five times. Also, he is well known as one of the members of The Gunbarrel Highwaymen (with Terry Gordon and Reg Poole). Owen runs a ‘music’ pub….the Tumblong Tavern, near Gundagai.
Kate and Clive are an acoustic country/folk duo, from Wangaratta. Kate is a multi-instrumentalist (guitar/button accordion/mandolin). Clive plays guitar and ukulele. Kate has a lovely Emmylou Harris type voice. Together Kate and Clive have a great vocal harmony sound. They sing songs ranging from country/folk to The Beatles songs, and classics, such as Don’t Fence Me In. Kate and Clive are looking forward to entertaining the Music Tour of Victoria & Canberra tour group, at the Vine Hotel, on Thursday evening November 14th 2024.
Zackerbilks is one of Canberra’s most outstanding jazz bands. An 8 piece band, Zackerbilks play very entertaining traditional Dixieland style jazz… a mixture of instrumental and vocal numbers. The band includes trumpeter, Zach Raffan, Miriam Miles-Read (banjo-uke & vocals), as well as two clarinets, trombone, piano, double bass, & drums. Zackerbilks play raucous, high-energy tunes, mainly from the 1900s to the 1940s. Their music is sure to get your feet moving! Band members wear colourful 1920s style outfits on stage. Zackerbilks will perform for us at our End of Tour Dinner on Thursday evening, November 21st.VIEW ITINERARY
DAY 1 Thursday November 14, 2024 Wangaratta
Morning: Depart Melbourne and travel to Wangaratta. On the way visit singer Wayne Horsburgh’s home, in Benalla, for morning tea. See Wayne’s excellent ‘museum’, with all the memorabilia he has collected during his outstanding career in Australia and the U.S. Wayne will sing us a few songs. We will then visit the Benalla Rose Gardens, to see the statue/sculpture of Sir Edward (‘Weary’) Dunlop, famous WW2 soldier/doctor/prisoner-of-war. Then, in Glenrowan, visit the Ned Kelly siege site. This is where Ned, dressed in a helmet and suit of armour made from ploughs, made his famous ‘last stand’, on 28th June 1880. Visit the excellent Ned Kelly Museum & Homestead. We then visit Greta Cemetery, where Ned Kelly, his mother, and his sister are buried. On arrival in Wangaratta enjoy a short panoramic coach tour of the town before checking into our accommodation. Evening: Commencement of Tour Dinner at the historic Vine Hotel, including entertainment by local duo, Kate Cole & Clive Brooker (lovely vocal harmonies). Overnight: Parkview Motor Inn, Wangaratta. (MorningTea;D)
DAY 2 Friday November 15, 2024 Bright
Today we travel to the town of Bright, in north-eastern Victoria. Morning: Visit Beechworth, one of Australia’s finest historic gold-mining towns. Visit the impressive Beechworth Historic Courthouse, where Ned Kelly had his Pre-Committal Trial. Then visit Beechworth’s Burke Museum, one of the most outstanding regional museums in Australia. Early afternoon: Visit Yackandandah…..one of Australia’s prettiest historic villages. Late afternoon: Arrive in Bright. Register for the Mountaingrass Festival & check into our accommodation. Evening: Attend our first Mountaingrass concert, featuring several of the festival’s outstanding bluegrass and old time music acts. Overnight: Riverbank Park Motel, Bright. (B)
DAY 3 Saturday November 16, 2024 Bright
Morning: Enjoy a coach tour to the village of Mt Beauty, which lies at the foot of Victoria’s highest mountain – Mt Bogong. The drive to Mt Beauty features amazing alpine scenery. Afternoon: Back in Bright, enjoy the colourful Mountaingrass Festival, including an afternoon concert. Evening: Enjoy an evening Mountaingrass concert, featuring several of the festival’s outstanding bluegrass and old time music acts. (B)
DAY 4 Sunday November 17, 2024 Bright
Morning: Enjoy an early morning coach tour to Harrietville, an alpine village at the foot of Mt Feathertop, in Victoria’s High Country. Spectacular scenery on the 25 km drive from Bright to Harrietville. After returning to Bright you may like to attend the festival’s mid-morning gospel concert. Afternoon: Enjoy the Mountaingrass Festival, including an afternoon concert. Evening: Enjoy the festival’s final concert, featuring several of the festival’s outstanding bluegrass and old time music acts. (B)
DAY 5 Monday November 18, 2024 Corryong
Travel to Corryong, in north-eastern Victoria. On the way visit the town of Tallangatta, where we will see the recently unveiled sculpture of Sandy, the war-horse (the only one – of approx. 145,000 Australian WW1 war-horses - to return to Australia). On arrival in the High Country town of Corryong we visit the Man from Snowy River Museum. This excellent museum contains items and information relating to Jack Riley (almost certainly the main person Banjo Paterson’s famous poem, The Man from Snowy River, is based on). The museum also houses Jim Simpson’s Rug. This amazing ‘Map of Australia’ rug was knitted by local, Jim Simpson, whilst a prisoner of war, in Germany, during WW2. Evening: After a group dinner, John Howie will host a session of Aussie bush poetry including, of course, The Man from Snowy River. Please join in and recite your favourite bush poems. Overnight: Mountain View Motel, Corryong & Corryong Hotel Motel. (B,D)
DAY 6 Tuesday November 19, 2024 Canberra
Travel to Canberra, via Tumbarumba, Tumblong and Gundagai. Morning tea in Tumblong, including a few songs from outstanding local country music artists, Owen & Ian Blundell. On arrival in Gundagai enjoy a short panoramic tour of the town, including a visit to the iconic Dog on the Tuckerbox monument. We will sing Along the Road to Gundagai and Where the Dog Sits on the Tuckerbox. Afternoon: Arrive in Canberra, an impressive city built around beautiful Lake Burley Griffin. Canberra features many of Australia’s most important public buildings, museums, and art galleries. On arrival, enjoy a sightseeing coach tour of Canberra. Evening: Dinner at one of Canberra’s excellent clubs (possibly Canberra Southern Cross Club). Overnight: Pavillion on Northbourne Hotel, Canberra. (B,MorningTea)
DAY 7 Wednesday November 20, 2024 Canberra
Today we visit four of Canberra’s most outstanding attractions. At the National Gallery of Australia, see some of Australia’s most iconic paintings, including the series of Ned Kelly paintings, by Sidney Nolan, and The Drover’s Wife, by Russell Drysdale. At the National Museum of Australia, see hundreds of fascinating items, including Azaria Chamberlain’s clothes, Burke’s leather water bottle (Burke & Wills Expedition, 1860-61), and a beautiful Essington Lewis Holden (1949 Holden car). At Parliament House, see one of Australia’s most iconic paintings, The Big Picture, by Tom Roberts (1903), which depicts the first sitting of the Australian parliament, at the Royal Exhibition Building, Melbourne, in 1901. We will also visit Old Parliament House. Evening: Dinner at another of Canberra’s excellent clubs (possibly The Hellenic Club). After dinner John Howie & Gill Delaney will host an informal music session/singalong. Please bring your instruments and voices and join in! (B)
DAY 8 Thursday November 21, 2024 Canberra
Morning: Visit the Australian War Memorial. See one of the original Landing Craft that took the ANZACs ashore, at Gallipoli. We will spend the whole morning at this outstanding museum. Afternoon: Free time. Evening: Enjoy an End-of-Tour Dinner, including entertainment by Zackerbilks – one of Canberra’s top jazz bands. (B,D)
DAY 9 Friday November 22, 2024 Departure
Morning: Transfer to Canberra Airport for your flight home. Note: If we charter a coach from Melbourne, for the tour, it may be possible for tour group members who live in Melbourne, or along the Hume Hwy between Canberra and Melbourne, to travel home on the coach. Please discuss this with Travelrite. (B)
|TWIN FARE PER PERSON
Please note: If any of the musical entertainment/entrances/events in the itinerary are unavailable, we will make every effort to replace them with similar entertainment/entrances/events.
It is important that all tour participants have a basic level of physical fitness that allows them to take part in this activity without the need of assistance from others.
Travelrite International Pty Ltd, (ABN 64 005 817 078) is the tour operator.
The tours costs are based on transport, accommodation costs and entrance costs at 1 November 2023. Travelrite reserves the right to alter the costs if any of these factors change, giving any passenger that has booked the right to withdraw with full refund of monies paid or modify arrangements. No alterations to costings will be made within 60 days of departure.
Deposit and Payment
A deposit of $500 per passenger is required at the time of booking. Full payment will be required 60 days before departure. A 1.5% administration charge will be added to payment by Visa and Mastercard.
Cancellations within 60 days prior to departure will result in the loss of all monies paid. Cancellation outside 60 days from departure will result in a cancellation fee of $500 per person. Travel insurance is recommended to cover the costs of cancellation fees due to illness, death in family, etc.
Minimum Tour Numbers
The tour has been costed on the basis of a minimum number of passengers having booked 60 days prior to departure. Travelrite reserves the right to cancel the tour, giving a full refund of all monies paid or offer arrangements to proceed with the tour at a modified cost if the minimum number is not achieved.
The tour is based on arrangements which do not allow for any refunds in respect to sightseeing, accommodation, meals or other services not utilised after the tour has commenced.
All passengers qualify for 1 piece free baggage allowance.
Children under 5 years of age are ineligible on coach & cruise tours. Children under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. Passengers with disabilities are welcome on Travelrite & Cruise Offers tours provided they are accompanied by a companion capable of providing all necessary assistance, and do not require special assistance from Travelrite & Cruise Offers personnel. Travelrite and Cruise Offers reserves the right to refuse to carry anyone if it is felt the individual cannot cope with the requirements of coach & cruise tour travel and who may require services and facilities that Travelrite & Cruise Offers cannot guarantee will be available. You agree to not hold the Travelrite & Cruise Offers responsible for any decision made by any of them or any service provider to refuse to carry you, provide any facilities or accommodation to you or to provide any service to you.
Travelrite International Pty Ltd. is the tour organiser. Travelrite International acts only as agents in making of arrangements with carriers, hoteliers and others for the tour. As a result we cannot accept liability for any act or omission whatsoever, whether negligent or otherwise of those carriers, hoteliers or other persons providing services in connection with the tour over whom we have no direct or exclusive control. We do not accept responsibility for any injury, damage, loss, delay, change of schedule or any other events which are beyond our direct control, such as, but not limited to, war, flood, fire, civil disturbance, acts of God, acts of government, or any other authorities, terrorism, accidents to or failure of machinery or equipment, or industrial action. The passage contract in use by the carriers concerned, when issued, shall constitute the sole contract between the transportation companies or firms and the purchasers of these tours and the passengers. Baggage is at own risk throughout the tour. The contract shall be construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Victoria and any legal action must be undertaken in the State of Victoria.
Delays and Unforeseen Events
You engage Travelrite Inter- national to book this tour on your behalf and you acknowledge that Travelrite International acts as your agent for the purpose of making contracts between you and the various providers of accommodation, transportation and other services that comprise the tour. Travelrite International may without reference to you provide or make available to you, or may as your agent engage any third party to provide or make available to you, any good or service which Travelrite International reasonably believes is necessary for your benefit to maintain the tour itinerary, repatriate you or otherwise accommodate, transport or sustain you in circumstances in which the tour itinerary fails wholly or partly for any reason. You appoint Travelrite International your attorney for this purpose. You agree to pay Travelrite International any cost thereof and you indemnify Travelrite International in respect of any cost it incurs in this regard. Travelrite International advises you to obtain travel insurance generally including in respect of the risk that any such good or service may become required.
How to Book:
Bookings can be made by completing a booking form and sending it with a deposit of $500 per person to:
Travelrite International Pty. Ltd.
423 Whitehorse Road Balwyn, Victoria 3103
Further information can be obtained by telephoning
Toll Free 1800 630 343
Phone: (03) 9836 2522
ABOUT TRAVELRITE INTERNATIONAL:
Travelrite International Pty Ltd (ABN 64 005 817 078) is a well-established travel company which has been operating in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne for more than 40 years. It is fully ATAS accredited: A10538 and is fully credited with IATA. As such, it directly represents the major airlines of the world and all major domestic and international tour and transport operators. Travelrite International has been operating special interest tours for 35 years, and now runs over 120 tours a year. Travelrite International Pty Ltd is a full member of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents – AFTA.
“One of the best tours we have ever done. Great program and lovely people.”
“Well organised tour that ran smoothly. Very impressed with Wayne Horsburgh, intelligent, talented and caring.”