First and foremost, Thursday 25th is about honouring our treasured ANZACs and their ultimate service to our nation.
Though if you’ve been savvy and have scheduled a Friday RDO, you’ll be enjoying yet another extra-long weekend in April. And because we want to see you making the most of those precious four days from start to finish, we’ve got you covered with a handful of awesome things to do on the Gold Coast this Anzac Day weekend.
ICONIC ANZAC DAY CELEBRATIONS
Currumbin Anzac Day Dawn Service | Thursday 25
We should not for a moment forget why we’re enjoying this long weekend in April, so be sure to pay your respects to our fallen fathers who’ve made the ultimate sacrifice and those who continue to serve while protecting our freedom. Currumbin RSL’s beautiful tribute—held by the beach at Currumbin Vikings SLSC—is broadcast across the nation on Sunrise, though there’s nothing better than being there in person, listening to the goose bump-inducing Last Post as the sun rises. Singer John Williamson himself has been known to make a surprise appearance and there is rarely a dry eye in the house when the ashes of servicemen and women passed are scattered at sea via SLSC rowboats. Lest we forget.
When: Dawn service 5am (march past starts at 4:30am)
Where: Elephant Rock, Currumbin Beach
Southport Anzac Day Dawn Service And Post Celebrations | Thursday 25
Northerners looking to pay their respects on Anzac Day choose to flock to Southport. Rise early for the dawn service at the Great Lawn, Broadwater Parklands (4:35am), or gather along the Marine Parade march past route from 8:30am, concluding at Anzac Park for the service at the cenotaph at 9am. Commemorative drinks, comradery and a mega Two Up continues at the RSL Club Southport from noon—gather your mates and positive public holiday energy.
When: Dawn service (4:35am), march past (8:30am), Two Up (12pm onwards)
Where: Great Lawn, Broadwater Parklands + Southport Club RSL
Two Up And Celebrations At Currumbin RSL | Thursday 25
Following the commemorative dawn service, march past and morning service, Currumbin RSL’s Anzac Day gathering is legendary, where locals flock to celebrate good friends and toast in honour of our service men and women, past and present. Arrive early or risk lining up outside. Inside, you’ll be treated to the enthusiastic action of Two Up, a pop up bar by Balter, live music by Rhodes & Co. and a healthy dose of mateship in the air.
When: 1pm until late
Where: Currumbin RSL, 165 Duringan Street, Currumbin
LONG WEEKEND EVENTS
Bleach* Festival | All Weekend Long
Continuing right through April, Bleach* Festival is an absolute standout event happening over the Gold Coast Anzac Day weekend. Bleach* is a sophisticated, contemporary and innovative expression of music, dance, theatre and visual arts with key activation sites from Burleigh to Currumbin, Palm Beach, Broadbeach, Surfers Paradise, Mudgeeraba, Southport and everywhere in between. Anticipate a bedazzling program of events from The Cleaners theatrical installation and interactive b-grade thriller Throttle, to On This Land We Gather first nations performance, Wild City workshop series, Bleach* at Burleigh’s inaugural beach bar and, the cherry on top, a month-long residency and packed roster of artists under the glittering Spiegeltent.
When: Various times
Where: Various locations
Spiegeltent | All Weekend Long
Run in conjunction with Bleach* Festival, we could overlook the month-long Spiegeltent residency when pulling together our top pick of things to do on the Gold Coast this Anzac Day weekend. Presented by Strut and Fret Production House, this unique pop-up performance space will host nightly performances of sexy cabaret Limbo Unhinged across the weekend, together with one-off appearances from comedians Tom Gleeson (Joy, April 26) and Lano & Woodley (Fly, April 27 and 28), plus more.
When: Various times
Where: Centenary Park, Broadbeach
Feast On Fifth | Saturday 27 April
Another atmospheric community event hosted by Bleach* Festival, head along to Feast on Fifth in Palm Beach with an empty belly and all of your dance moves in your back pocket on Saturday 27 April. Palm Beach sure knows how to party and in true foodie fashion, they’re serving up every cuisine you could imagine from visiting food trucks and the neighbourhood restaurants. Pair those sunset vibes with cool jazz tunes, street-style blues and a smattering of other hip-swaying genres; reaching a crescendo when the Hanlon Brothers rounds out the night.
When: 4pm to 9pm
Where: Fifth Avenue, Palm Beach
The YOT Club Parties | Saturday 27 & Sunday 28 April
It’s been dubbed the world’s first super yacht entertainment venue, and it’s all ours, baby. If you’re yet to experience the extravagance that is The YOT Club—the daring creation of local luxury charter group, Crystal Blue Yacht Charters—strap yourself in for two wickedly spicy parties this Anzac Day weekend on the Gold Coast. With room for 400 savvy party goers across two levels, sun loungers, two cocktail bars, DJs and dance floor, plus sunset vibes and Insta shoot opportunities aplenty, this multi-million-dollar floating discotheque must be seen to be believed.
When: Boarding 3:15pm Saturday & 2:15pm Sunday
Where: Departing Muriel Henchman Drive, Main Beach
Tickets: From $49, available here
Miami Barketta | Sunday 28 April
Before you start picking out your favourite dog collar accessories for your adorable fur-baby, please be advised is a human-only event—but the best possible kind. Miami Marketta is partnering with Paws at the Park to host their first pop-up event, Miami Barketta, this Anzac Day weekend on the Gold Coast. Dubbed ‘a creative Sunday session for dog lovers’ where you can make your own macramé lead or snuggle mat, paint your pet while sipping wine, or learn how to watercolour paint puppies; along with doggie market stalls, live music, street food vendors and the Marketta bar. Entry to the venue is free, while tickets for the creative workshops are $45 to $60, with all profits going to the Animal Welfare League of QLD.
When: 12pm to 5pm
Where: Miami Marketta, 23 Hillcrest Parade, Miami
Desert Digs Vintage Markets | Sunday 28 April
Thrifting is the new vogue, and if vintage is your style, you’ll be vibing the Gold Coast’s coolest new pre-loved markets—Desert Digs Vintage Markets. Held bi-monthly at Mo’s Desert Clubhouse in the Burleigh Industrial Estate, expect to see stalls by professional thrifters Thryft GC and Hunt & Gather Vintage, together with dozens of rad locals selling their once-loved wares. From new-to-you threads to vinyls, collectables and antique items, with live music and the wondrously psychedelic Mo’s Desert Clubhouse mural as their backdrop.
When: 2pm to 5pm
Where: Mo’s Desert Clubhouse, 6/36 Central Drive, Burleigh Heads
Image Credit: Brooke Darling for Urban List