Image by Creative Edge Photography
The annual queer-day-out to kick-start Midsumma Festival's 22 days of celebration
Midsumma Carnival highlights the opening weekend of the three-week Festival each year.
Fun in the sun all day and late into the evening to celebrate the beginning of another fabulous Midsumma Festival. Enjoy performances, picnic with friends, and see the iconic Dog Show. With stalls, food, and live entertainment galore leading us into a warm summer evening of T Dance.
Midsumma continues to work with the State Government to determine the safest way to deliver the event.
Midsumma Carnival is an iconic outdoor celebration that has become one of the biggest highlights in the LGBTIQA+ annual calendar. The event provides a fitting opening to the festival each year - see below for details.
The Victorian Government has made masks compulsory at major events with more than 30,000 people. Whilst we anticipate that maximum numbers will be below this number for a lot of the day, at peak times more than 30,000 can be onsite at Carnival at any one time. Therefore Midsumma encourages that for the safety of you, other attendees and event staff, that you wear a face-mask when moving about the site (masks can be removed when seated) and to maintain safe social distancing to protect yourself and others around you. Please do not attend should you be presenting any symptoms of COVID-19. In that case please get tested and isolate immediately.
More Information about the Midsumma Carnival program is below as well as in T Dance Artists and Emcees.
Zoom in to the PDF maps to see more detail. Note that the Picnic Precinct Info Tent (where you can register for the Dog Show) is marked with a paw icon.
Free bike valet parking is provided by Arevo at the St Kilda Rd end of the park (see above map).
Cycling Detours: On Sunday 23 January, cyclists and pedestrians should use the green route beside the Yarra shown on the map below to bypass the Midsumma Carnival crowds.
There are two main stall blocks: the Sports Precinct at the St Kilda Rd end of the park and the main Stalls Village in the Picnic Precinct, at the other end.
One of the most popular events of the day, the iconic Midsumma Carnival Dog Show will be back in 2022 on Sunday 23 January, from 3pm on the Picnic Precinct Stage at Alexandra Gardens, hosted by Nic Holas. A fun day out in the park with your pooch. There's no entry fee, but you should register before 2:20pm at the Picnic Info Tent, directly in front of the Picnic Precinct Stage.
Cutest Bitch; Sexiest Stud; Best Trick; Best Dressed; Best Owner/Dog Combo; and then the ultimate Best Dog Overall.
The Dog Show is proudly sponsored and supported by Ziwi air-dried, free range pet food.
Register on the day at the Picnic Precinct Information Tent between 11am and 2:20pm; the stall is located directly in front of the Picnic Precinct Stage (marked with a paw icon on the precinct map - see map).
- Entry is free.
- Please note that registrations must close at 2:20pm sharp on the day.
- All category winners will receive a prize pack from ZIWI Peak air-dried dog food.
- Kelly Schulz, head of Brand, Communications & Culture and Jarrod Humphreys - part of the BE Proud pride employee network at BELONG
- Esther Wong - Nutritional Advisor Manager, representing Ziwi sponsor of the dog show prizes
- Richard Noonan – Board member from Midsumma Board of Management
Please support those who support us:
Unlike conventional dry foods that are mass produced and cooked at high temperatures, our foods are handcrafted and gently air-dried in our kitchens. A modern take on centuries-old meat preserving techniques, our Z-TWINTECH™ air drying technology locks in the goodness of our raw ingredients, without artificial preservatives. ZIWI Peak air-dried dog food is crafted to combine the best of raw and fresh diets with the safe convenience of dry foods. Ready-serve peak nutrition without compromise. Simply scoop and serve!
Terms and Conditions – Midsumma Carnival Community Dog Show to be held 23 January 2022
1. The Promoter is Midsumma Festival, Ground Level, 77 Southbank Boulevard, ABN: 50 783 159 198. Telephone number 03 9296 6600.
2. Information on how to enter and prizes forms part of the terms of entry. Entry into the competition is deemed acceptance of these terms and conditions.
3. If there is any inconsistency between these Terms and Conditions and anything else that refers to this competition, these Terms and Conditions will prevail.
When to enter
4. The competition commences on 23 January 2022 at 11am and concludes on 23 January 2022 at approximately 4pm AEDT. Entries must be received by the Promoter via the advertised channel and by the advertised time, as published on this website.
How to enter
5. Entrants must enter the competition in advance and in person at Midsumma Carnival on 23 January 2022 at the location advertised above.
Conditions of entry
6. Entrants are required to take full responsibility for their entry and to be in effective and safe control of their dog(s) at all times. All entrants agree to indemnify the promoter and the event sponsors for any incident that may occur as part of the Midsumma Carnival Dog Show.
7. As part of the entry all entrants agree to still or video photography being taken that may be published by the promoter in any form or channel the promoter wishes for promotion of the event or subsequent events.
8. The Promoter reserves the right to disqualify any entrant whose dog(s) is deemed by the organisers to not be under effective safe control of the handler at all times.
Prizes on offer
9. Advertised Prizes are listed above.
10. Prizes cannot be transferred, exchanged or redeemed for cash.
11. It is a condition of accepting the prize that the winner must comply with all the conditions of use of the prize and the prize supplier’s requirements. It is the responsibility of the winner to confirm such conditions with the prize supplier or other relevant third parties.
Further Terms and Conditions
12. The Promoter reserves the right to amend, cancel or suspend this competition if an event beyond the control of the Promoter corrupts or affects the ability for the competition to take place.
13. If any prize is unavailable, for whatever reason, the Promoter reserves the right to substitute the prize for a prize of equal or greater value.
Are you ready to lip sync for your legacy? Midsumma Carnival’s Lipsync Limelight could be the perfect place for you to debut your charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent to the world! Hosted by Melbourne icon Frock Hudson, Lipsync Limelight is a chance to either lip sync the house down or cheer on your friend’s debut performance of a lifetime.
Where? Midsumma Carnival Picnic Stage, Alexandra Gardens
When? 5.15pm on Sunday 23 February (register by 4pm)!
How do I sign up? Go to either info tent (marked with "i" or a paw icon on the precinct map) to sign up on the day, choose your song (must be available on Spotify) and limber up… ready to let them HAVE IT! Make sure you submit your song before 4pm.
- Best LIPS (Double pass to Galentine's Under the Stars + $50 Prezzee voucher)
- Best OUTFIT (Double pass to Galentine's Under the Stars + $50 Prezzee voucher)
- Most ORIGINAL (Double pass to Galentine's Under the Stars + $50 Prezzee voucher)
- Alex Morris
- Pride Of Our Footscray Queen (TBC)
CARNIVAL MAIN STAGE
- 11am: DJ Lips Service
- 12pm: EMCEE - Lou Wall
- 12:10pm: Woah Alyssa (Woah, Alyssa! 3 + Woah, Alyssa! and Besties)
- 12:30pm: Ballads and Ballgowns
- 1:05pm: Melbourne Rainbow Band (Picnic at Forest Glade)
- 1:40pm: Official Proceedings including Welcome to Country
- 2:25pm: Seamen! The Sea Shanty Spectacular
- 2:40pm: EMCEE - Geraldine Quinn
- 2:45pm: BROAD (Geraldine Quinn)
- 3pm: DJ Mirasia
- 3:15pm: Pride of Our Footscray
- 3:55pm: Get Bent Fest! (Lou Wall)
- 4:10pm: The Pageant
- 4:50pm: Bowie Ball
- 5:15pm: Smash: the Drag Show
- 6:00pm: Carnival ends - T Dance program commences
CARNIVAL PICNIC STAGE
- 11am: DJ JARV!S
- 1:20pm: WCB: Sigil (and WCB: Sigil Digital Stream)
- 1:45pm: Out Proud and Country
- 2:30pm: Sweet SixDEAN
- 3pm: Dog Show - hosted by Nic Holas
- 4:35: DJ Tinika
- 5:15pm: Lip Sync Limelight hosted by Frock Hudson (Sing-a-long Dragtime with Miss Jay and Frock Hudson, Pride Cup Trivia Live, The Seven Gins of Pride and Sweet SixDEAN)
- 6:00pm: Carnival ends - T Dance program commences
- 12pm: 1 hour skating lesson for families at the YMCA Skate Park
- 1pm: 1 hour skating lesson for families at the YMCA Skate Park
- 2pm: 1 hour skating lesson for families at the YMCA Skate Park
- 3pm: 1 hour skating lesson for families at the YMCA Skate Park
- 4pm: programming concludes; YMCA Skate Park remains open
Sports Precinct Programming
- 11am: Precinct opens
- 12pm - 12.15pm: Rainbow Golf Australia Demonstration
- 12.30pm - 12.45pm: Carnival Games - Round 1
- 1pm - 1.15pm: Melbourne Spikers Demonstration
- 1.30pm - 1.45pm: Carnival Games - Round 2
- 2pm - 2.15pm: Melbourne Chargers Demonstration
- 2.30pm - 2.45pm: Carnival Games - Round 3
- 3pm - 3.15pm: Southern Lights Ice Hockey Demonstration
- 3.30pm - 3.45pm: Carnival Games - Grand Final
- 4pm - 4.15pm: Melbourne Wranglers Demonstration
- 4.30pm - 4.45pm: Proud 2 Play Interview
- 5pm: Precinct closes
T Dance Main Stage
Hosted by Jordan Barr, Charlie Lewin and Aurelia St Clair
- 6:00 - Max Lawrence (plus dancers) - musician
- 6:15 - Cerulean - Drag Performer
- 6:25 - Duchess Kay - DJ
- 7:15 - Ruby Slippers - Drag Artist
- 7:35 - Butch Le Butch - DJ
- 8:15 - Julai - Musician
- 8:30 - SWEATY - DJ
- 9:30 - Art Simone - Drag Diva
- 10:00 - Event finishes
Please note, performance times are estimates and are subject to change
T Dance Picnic Stage
Hosted by Patrick and Laura (The Pageant)
- 6:05 - Adam Noviello - musician
- 6:15 - DJ Semi Precious
- 7:05 - LION X - musician
- 7:20 - Tinika - DJ
- 8:10 - Sullivan - DJ
- 9:00 - Milo Hartill - Burlesque/dancer
- 9:30 - Stage closes
See T Dance Artists and Emcees for photos and bios of our amazing 2022 T Dance talent.
Midsumma Carnival will have two licensed bars for you to purchase your drinks. In addition to the bar near the Main Stage, there will be a second bar in the Picnic Area, providing easy access from the main Stalls Village and the Picnic Stage. Midsumma encourages guests to support Midsumma by purchasing their drinks from the Midsumma-operated bars. In order to gain entry to the bars, all patrons need to obtain a proof-of-age wristband, check-in to the QR code provided and provide proof of their vaccination status. Unfortunately, Midsumma Carnival is no longer BYO and alcohol consumption outside the enclosed licensed areas will not be permitted.
Tip: to avoid the queues, grab your wristband from either the booth beside the main Information Tent as you arrive, or else from the proof-of-age booth opposite the main stage, not far from the entrance to the bar.
No Glass: To minimise the risk of injury, Midsumma Carnival has a strict no glass policy across the site. Broken glass has been one of the major causes of injury to guests in the past, so please don't bring glass drinking vessels, glass wine bottles or glass beer bottles to Carnival.
★ $4 Water
★ $4 Coca-Cola
★ $4 Lemonade
Wine by Barefoot
By the Glass: $9
★ Sauvignon Blanc
★ Pinot Grigio
All beers and cider are priced at $9
★ Pridelweiss Ale
★ Laneway Lager
★ Passionfruit Smash
★ Raspberry Smash
★ Berties Cider
All spirits are priced at $11 or $10
★ GrainShaker Vodka Lime & Soda
★ GrainShaker Eristoff Vodka Pink Grapefruit
★ Ned Whiskey and Dry
★ Ned Whiskey and Cola
Barefoot Wines - Wine Tasting in Main Bar
In the main bar, Barefoot Wines will be providing samples of their four wines that you can purchase by the glass at the two Midsumma Carnival bars.
Midsumma Carnival has something for everybody, including many facilities provided to assist those with special accessibility needs. There is clear directional signage across the site indicating facilities and services.
- Accessible Drop-Off Bay for Vehicles: marquee with seating and ramp up to kerb located at the intersection of Boathouse Drive and Alexandra Avenue, managed by traffic controllers and specially-trained volunteers, allowing vehicles and taxis to drop off close to the event precinct, with ramp down to road and a temporary marquee to give shade to people who are waiting.
- Accessible Parking: unfortunately, there is no onsite accessible parking, but accessible parking is available at:
Access within the Precinct
The entire Midsumma Carnival precinct is wheelchair accessible. The majority of permanent bitumen pathways remain free of infrastructure to maximise accessible routes across the site. Grass areas will also be cut low for wheelchair access through parklands and low-hanging tree branches trimmed by Council arborists. The majority of food service areas are positioned on hard stand surfaces, with low-service counters included where possible.
Specific wheelchair facilities provided are:
- Wheelchair Charging Facility: at the main Information Tent, beside the Sports Precinct at the St Kilda Rd end of the park.
- Wheelchair Lift: available as required at the stages.
- Accessible Toilets: all toilet blocks, in multiple locations throughout the event site, include accessible toilets, including inside the bar and behind the stage (for performers).
Designated Viewing Areas
Positioned close to the front of each stage for people with varying requirements.
- Volunteer Briefing: Auslan interpretation at the Volunteer Briefing.
- Carnival Stages: everything on the Main Stage will be Auslan interpreted up to the start of T Dance (at 6pm). The Dog Show on the Picnic Stage will also be Auslan interpreted.
Two Audio Access Guides will be available between midday and 6pm at Midsumma Carnival to assist, guide or accompany patrons to desired events or areas to provide audio description. Anyone requiring this service should make their way to the Event HQ Marquee (using Access Champions if appropriate - see below). The Event HQ marquee is located beside the Main Information Tent at the St Kilda Rd end of the park, beside the path that runs alongside Alexandra Avenue. A queuing system will be used if both audio describers are already providing descriptions to others.
Midsumma Carnival has Access Champions on site with a mobile number and a "runner" to collect attendees who are blind or of low vision from Flinders St Station. If you or someone you are with requires one-on-one support for navigating the Midsumma Carnival grounds, guidance to finding and using the available access provisions or any general advice around accessibility on the day, they are there to help! They can be contacted by:
- Asking one of the friendly volunteers at the entrances
- Asking at the Info Tents
- Calling or messaging 0472 642 206 (number valid on Midsumma Carnival day only)
A relaxed, alcohol-free area managed by harm reduction organisation DanceWize, including shade, ear plugs and water is provided by DanceWize, and located in the Sports Stage Precinct, on the Alexandra Avenue (south) side of the park.
For information about accessibility facilities across the festival, see Access Information.
What COVIDSafe measures are in place?
There have been a lot of hoops and hurdles due to COVID-19, and we have made some slight adjustments to Midsumma Festival 2022 in accordance with the Victorian Government COVIDSafe guidance to make sure we are doing our part to be COVIDSafe. We want everyone to be able to enjoy Midsumma Festival 2022 and keep yourself safe at all of our events.
To view the most up to date information, visit our info page - Being COVIDSafe at Midsumma Festival
Why is there no BYO alcohol?
Unfortunately for this year, our licensing for Midsumma Carnival does not permit BYO alcohol. Midsumma was only able to secure licensing for the event this year provided the event was no BYO alcohol. We have added in an extra bar on-site (located in the main precinct and now picnic precinct also) to help avoid long lines or crowding. In order to gain entry to the bar, you need to obtain a proof of age wristband, available beside the Main Information Tent or near the entrance to the bar.
Can I Bring Glass?
No. To minimise the risk of injury, Midsumma Carnival has a strict no glass policy across the site. Broken glass has been one of the major causes of injury to guests in the past, so please don't bring glass drinking vessels, glass wine bottles or glass beer bottles to Carnival. Midsumma encourages guests to support Midsumma Festival by purchasing drinks at the Midsumma-operated bar. In order to gain entry to the bar, you need to obtain a proof of age wristband, available beside the Main Information Tent or near the entrance to the bar.
Dan Murphy’s is a proud supporter of Midsumma. Celebrate with us at Midsumma Carnival and enjoy some wines from Barefoot. Not heading to Midsumma Carnival? Visit selected stores in VIC for a free tasting of Barefoot Wine to support Midsumma, and for every bottle of Barefoot sold, $0.20 per bottle will be donated to Midsumma.
What happens if there is severe wet weather or smoke?
We are monitoring the Melbourne weather very carefully, and will also have professional risk assessors on the day of Midsumma Carnival who will be monitoring the weather. Our first priority is you and our communities at Midsumma Carnival. If there is severe rain or smoke on the day we will pause the activities on the stages until it is safe to resume. For weather and air updates in Melbourne visit the Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology. Make sure you have a contingency plan, stay safe in all weather, and look after each other.
Is food available?
Yes, a diverse selection of delicious food trucks will be at Midsumma Carnival and T Dance, located at differing locations throughout the precinct, offering food options for all. Whether you're feeling like sweet or savoury, something vegan, gluten free or craving a meaty delight, Midsumma Carnival has it all.
Can I Bring my own Tent Structure or Umbrella to Carnival?
Midsumma will provide umbrellas around the event precinct for the public to use. The City of Melbourne absolutely bans pegging any structures into the ground or placing them close to trees. If you do bring a structure it must be weighted to ensure it is safe in wind gusts, and it cannot be located anywhere that it will block views for other attendees. Non conforming structures will need to be dismantled and removed from the site.
Is Midsumma Carnival + T Dance family friendly?
Midsumma Carnival is a family friendly event, but at 6pm Carnival transforms into T Dance, which is recommended for 16+.
Are pets allowed?
Pets are welcomed at Carnival and you're invited to enter your dog in the Midsumma Carnival Dog Show. Please note though that the event is held in an outdoor space in the middle of summer. As there is limited natural shade available, we highly recommend taking the necessary precautions to ensure your pet is protected from the heat and stays hydrated. With all that in mind, the safest place from the heat for your pet is at home.
How do I stay cool at Midsumma Carnival?
As Midsumma Carnival is held in the middle of Summer it is important to remember to:
- Slip on a shirt
- Slop on sunscreen (throughout the day) - free sunscreen available at the Information Tents
- Slap on a hat (or bring an umbrella)
- Hydrate regularly (with three free water stations onsite)
Due to the natural structure of Alexandra Gardens, shade is limited and in high demand.
Check the SunSmart website for the current UV rating and advice on how to minimise sunburn and skin cancer risks, the Bureau of Meteorology website for weather forecasts and warnings or the EPA Victoria website for information about air quality ratings.
Midsumma Carnival is held at Alexandra Gardens (opposite Arts Centre Melbourne), which is a short walk from Flinders Street Station. As parking is limited, we recommend taking a train to Flinders Street Station, any tram along Swanston Street or Flinders Street, or cycling to the event - free valet bike parking near St Kilda Rd.
Can I film, photograph or interview people?
If you are working for a media organisation and intend to use film, photography or interviews of participants or performing artists for content, please get in touch with Felicity McIntosh, Midsumma's Marketing Manager, at [email protected] to request Media Accreditation.
If you are capturing memories for personal use, we ask you to please be respectful and ask for people’s permission before doing so.
Can I sell merchandise at Midsumma Carnival?
Stallholders and registered rovers are able to sell merchandise, but people who haven't registered are not permitted to do so. In order to sell merchandise outside of your stall space, you need to have a pre-approved Midsumma Rover pass.
When is Midsumma Carnival - T Dance?
Midsumma Carnival is the opening event for the festival - Midsumma Carnival will return in 2022. At 6pm, Midsumma Carnival transforms into Midsumma T Dance.
What accessibility services are provided at Midsumma Carnival?
Check out Midsumma Carnival Accessibility for a comprehensive description of the accessibility features provided at Midsumma Carnival and see Access Information for details about accessibility across the festival.
Wheelchair Accessibility: all of Alexandra Gardens are wheelchair accessible.
What measures are taken to protect the environment?
Midsumma Carnival is a large event - having so many people gathered in a relatively small space has the potential to seriously damage the environment. Some of the measures taken to reduce that impact include the following:
- Dedicated recycling and food waste bins are located in all areas of the venue, and are regularly cleared throughout the event
- Hydration stations and bubblers are provided to promote the use of refillable water bottles (and to encourage participants to keep well hydrated)
- No glass is allowed into the venue, to minimise the possibility of broken glass
- No balloons or streamers are allowed on site. Vendors may be permitted to use Eco-Glitter subject to approval on a case by case basis
- Electricity is provided via mains power or bio-diesel generators
- Food traders only use biodegradable products (no single use plastic)
- Volunteers and staff members are provided with refillable water bottles to be refilled at the hydration stations
If you have any questions, feedback or would like any information in another format, please don't hesitate to contact us on 03 9296 6600 or by emailing [email protected].
If you are Deaf, hard of hearing or have difficulty speaking, contact the National Relay Service on 133 677 or via relayservice.com.au, then ask for 03 9296 6600 during business hours. There is no additional charge for this service.
Event & ticketing details
Dates & Times
|WHEN||Sun 23 Jan 11am-10pm|
|FREE||No ticket required|
St Kilda Rd, MelbourneGet directions
TramAny Swanston St tram to stop 14