About the Festival


St Kilda Festival is a free celebration of community spirit, Australian music and the beautiful St Kilda foreshore.


Since the first St Kilda Festival in 1980, this well-loved annual summer celebration has established itself as an iconic event that brings hundreds of thousands of people together for one massive day of fun!

There’s a diverse programme packed with music, dance, free activities for all ages, shops, markets, food and drink — something for everyone!

Keep up with the latest news: sign up to the St Kilda Festival newsletter or follow us on social media!

Things to know

Lost something at the Festival?
All lost property has been delivered to the City of Port Phillip ASSIST team. They can be contacted on 03 9209 6777 or visited at 99A Carlisle Street, St Kilda.

Found something at the Festival?
Please take any found property to the ASSIST team at St Kilda Town Hall,  99A Carlisle Street, St Kilda.

St Kilda is not only home to the St Kilda Festival, but to hundreds of local residents and businesses. Please be considerate of those who graciously share their neighbourhood for the event.

The City of Port Phillip works hard to minimise disruption to locals during the Festival. Please be respectful and keep in mind:

  • The Festival is a dry zone: no alcohol outside of licensed areas, no BYO, no open vessels. Penalties apply.
  • No smoking within 10 metres of food vendors or on St Kilda Beach. Penalties may apply.
  • Glass is not permitted in any public areas within postcode 3182 on the Festival day.
  • The beach is glass free and smoke free—always. Penalties apply.
  • Parking is strictly enforced and traffic is restricted into the Festival precinct on Festival day (see the Road Closure Map for more info). Penalties apply.
  • Toilets: Public toilets and temporary event toilets are installed throughout the Festival precinct.
  • Waste disposal: Additional bins and recycling bins are located throughout the Festival. Please do your part to keep the area clean and green.
  • Sound levels in St Kilda will be higher than normal, but we aim to keep noise impact to a minimum during the Festival period. Please consider your neighbours throughout the precinct, especially if you’re planning a party on the day.

Each year, the Festival team works closely with Victoria Police to ensure that the event runs smoothly and safely, with as little impact on the local surroundings as possible. Communications across all Festival promotion and printed literature encourage Festival participants to respect St Kilda and its residents.

The Festival is for everyone: be kind, stay safe, have fun!

St Kilda Festival works very closely with all emergency service organisations to ensure best emergency management and operational practices are in place for Festival day to ensure a safe event for all.

  • For any emergency response on Festival day please dial 000.
  • For non-urgent assistance or information on Festival day please call the Festival Hotline on 9209 6306.

There are several first aid posts set up around the St Kilda Festival precinct, providing health management services on the day. First aid posts can be found at:

  • Fitzroy Street, between Lakeside Drive and Canterbury Road
  • Lower Esplanade
  • Catani Gardens (adjacent to the public toilets)

(See below map with stations marked.)

  • For all medical emergencies please dial 000.
  • For non-urgent onsite assistance, please call the Festival Hotline on on 9209 6306.

[pdf-embedder url=”https://stkildafestival.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/FESTIVAL-FIRST-AID-STATIONS.pdf” title=”FESTIVAL FIRST AID STATIONS”]

The St Kilda Festival has a number of initiatives designed to improve accessibility to the Festival site.

Transport: 

  • Disability drop off and pick up zone: Located on Beaconsfield Parade adjacent to Catani Gardens, (F4 on the Festival map)—disability pass required.
  • Disability Parking Area: There is a designated disability parking area on Fitzroy St, near the Fitzroy Bowls Club (C8 on the Festival map), and Belford St (N11 on the Festival map)—disability pass required.
  • Accessible trams: Trams 96a, 12a, 3a and 16a are the closest services to the Festival precinct. For information on accessible trams please visit the PTV website or call 1800 800 007.
  • Accessible buses: Bus routes 600, 606, 623 or 922 are the closest services to the Festival precinct and are wheelchair accessible services. For information on accessible buses please visit the PTV website or call 1800 800 007.

Toilets: There are a number of temporary and permanent accessible public toilets throughout the site, marked with the international symbol for disability access.

Vendors: All vendors throughout the site are accessibility compliant.

Information: Accessibility information will be available at Festival information booths throughout the precinct on Festival day. Service counters within these booths will be at accessible heights.

For further information, please see the Festival map, call ASSIST on 9209 6777 or visit one of our information booths on the day.

Over 100 stalls and venues provide St Kilda Festival patrons with a wide selection of food and drink throughout the Festival precinct, and three licensed areas are available for 18+ attendees. You’re sure to find something tasty that caters to your tastes and dietary requirements.
Remember: the Festival is a Dry Zone—no alcohol outside of licensed areas, no BYO, no open vessels and no glass. Smoking is prohibited within 10 metres of food vendors.

With over 80 market stalls onsite at the Festival, you’re sure to find unique, quality and handmade products to suit any taste or style!

The St Kilda Festival precinct is a Dry Zone.

Pursuant to Clause 54 of Community Amenity Local Law No 1, an ‘Alcohol Free Zone’ will apply in the St Kilda Festival Precinct, with the exception of licensed premises and approved extension to authorised areas with a Limited License. No BYO is allowed.

The St Kilda Festival Precinct consists of: The foreshore from Thackeray Street to Barkly Street; Barkly Street to Fitzroy Street; Fitzroy Street to Canterbury Road; Canterbury Road to Cowderoy Street to the Foreshore, including the beach.

Fines will apply.
The St Kilda Festival works with Victoria Police and the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation to put many measures in place to manage alcohol on Festival day. The Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation has restrictions on alcohol sales from takeaway liquor outlets in place in the area on 11 February 2018.

“No Alcohol” communications are carried across all Festival promotion and printed literature with the following messages reinforced:

  • Alcohol consumption is only permitted within designated licensed areas.
  • No BYO.
  • Local laws in place for the St Kilda Festival prohibit any persons from carrying open vessels of alcohol within the Festival Precinct, Victoria Police will monitor and may fine persons found to be in breach of the local law.

For further information, please call ASSIST on 9209 6777 or visit one of our information booths on the day.

Pets are welcome at St Kilda Festival! Catani Gardens, St Kilda Beach (near Pier Road) and Fitzroy Street are all pet-friendly. Do remember to be a responsible pet parent though, as the site is quite loud and very busy, particularly later in the day.
If bringing your pooch down, be sure to visit our Charity Partner, Pets of the Homeless on the Upper Esplanade. There will be treats for sale and a pop-up photo studio for dogs!

Submissions to participate at St Kilda Festival are now closed. 

Expressions of interest for the 2019 Festival will open 28 August – 28 September 2018. These include New Music Stage acts, Kidzone performers, activities, events, community groups and charity partners. Follow us on social media or subscribe to our newsletter to stay informed.

St Kilda Festival is a celebration of local music, however, all performers must be registered and approved to perform at the Festival. If you would like to busk at St Kilda Festival, please submit an application for a busking permit online, prior to the Festival.

All photographers and film crews shooting at St Kilda Festival require a permit.

Anyone undertaking commercial photography or filming at St Kilda Festival requires a permit, including media, freelance photographers and filmmakers, and people associated with Festival performers. The permits are required to ensure the safety of the Festival audience.

Please note: Photographers and film crews require a Public Liability Certificate of Currency (to the value of $10,000,000) to receive a permit. Successful applicants will be required to complete the St Kilda Festival Online Safety Induction before their permit is issued.

Online applications are now closed. For media accreditation requests, please contact:

Beth Patterson
ID Collective
M: 0425 820 243
E: bethp@idcollective.com.au

James Tang
ID Collective
M: 0430 088 531
E: jamest@idcollective.com.au

Volunteer applications for St Kilda Festival and Yalukut Weelam Ngargee are now closed.

Please sign up for our mailing list to be the first to know about future events and how you can get involved.
Further enquiries can be directed to festivalvolunteer@portphillip.vic.gov.au

“The Festival is intended to show that there are some beautiful and very positive aspects to community life in St Kilda.” Mayor, Cr Clarrie King, 1980 Festival press release

Running since 1980, St Kilda Festival remains a popular and iconic event that continues to attract massive, diverse crowds to St Kilda for the second Sunday in February each year.

As one of Australia’s oldest surviving community music festivals, St Kilda Festival has seen many formats and changes since its inception 38 years ago. The Festival continues the Melbourne tradition of congregating at its favourite beach at the end of summer each year with a free community celebration of and for the area, in an event that supports and celebrates home-grown musical talent.

The life of the Festival has been shaped by many—its performers, participants, its audiences, the residents, the businesses and the local community. All of these contributions have made the Festival what it is today, and more than anything else, represents the many stories of the past 38 years in St Kilda.

For a detailed look at the origins and stories behind St Kilda Festival, check out the publication St Kilda Festival: A 30-year history 1980 – 2010.

City of Port Phillip presents several other local festivals in 2018:

Sat 3 February | Yalukut Weelam Ngargee
Yalukut Weelam Ngargee is a free Indigenous Arts and Cultural Festival held annually in St Kilda’s O’Donnell Gardens, a significant Indigenous meeting place. The family-friendly event features a jam-packed line-up of emerging and established Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander musicians, dancers and artists, plus activities for the whole family. Visit the website

17—26 May | St Kilda Film Festival
The St Kilda Film Festival brings local film enthusiasts, emerging artists and accomplished industry insiders together in a ten-day celebration and exploration of film. The program includes screenings of the Top 100 Australian short films, the SoundKILDA music video competition, an international program, youth programs, and a free filmmaker development program. The St Kilda Film Festival is an Academy Awards® qualifying event, with award-winning films from the Festival eligible for consideration in the Short Film Awards, and Documentary Short sections of the Oscars®. Submissions for the 2018 Festival are open until January 31st 2018. Visit the website

25 August—1 September | Live n Local
Live n Local is a free winter celebration of music across the City of Port Phillip, serving up a selection of live performances and workshops across an array of unique venues. The festival hosts a free Artist Development Program, and an industry open day, fostering connections between emerging artists,  local organizations, and industry professionals. Visit the website

See what else is happening in the City of Port Phillip events calendar.

The Festival acknowledges the support and cooperation of all City of Port Phillip service teams and departments.

The Mayor and Councillors extend their appreciation to the following groups for their cooperation and contribution:
Victoria Police; Ambulance Victoria; St Johns Ambulance; State Emergency Service; Metropolitan Fire Brigade; Yarra Trams; Public Transport Victoria; St Kilda Village Traders Association; Fitzroy Street Traders Association; St Kilda Tourism Association; Acland & Fitzroy Street Residents’ Association; South East Water, The Boon Wurrung Foundation.

The St Kilda Festival thanks:
All City of Port Phillip staff; St Kilda Festival Traffic & Transport Committee; St Kilda Festival Emergency Management Committee; all Festival Staff, Volunteers and Suppliers, Festival Partners and a huge thanks to all the artists, events, venues and performers without whom this Festival wouldn’t exist – thanks for all your hard work, support and energy!

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