George Kerferd Hotel, Mayday Hills, Beechworth

Kudos MountainGrass’ past

On behalf of the organising committee for MountainGrass, I’d like to thank everyone who has supported us with staging our second MountainGrass festival. It was fabulous and we have lots of people to thank for our success.

Harrietville Community.

  • From the Harrietville community there are a lot of people to thank for both their financial sponsorship of the event and their ongoing assistance and support, in particular:
  • Pat Murphy and Wendy Draayers, from Feathertop who got on board with the event right from the start and who pulled out all stops out to support our event. Their excellent hospitality helped to provide a great atmosphere;
  • Hilary Morgan and Michael Cole from the Mountain View Retreat for providing us with the lovely Mountain View Retreat Hall;
  • Bennett Mountjoy, from the Snowline Hotel for providing a venue on Friday night and minding many of our pickers over the weekend;
  • Tony Mitchell the previous publican of the Harrietville Hotel Motel, and new publican John Manders for providing a Saturday night venue;
  • Nene and Ed Gardner from Casbak Alpine Units for donating Blackwood Lodge to accommodate many of our performers;
  • Meryl and Brian Thomas at the Harrietville Cabins and Caravan Park for reserving the entire park for Mountaingrass attendees and accommodating some of our performers;
  • Emma Hinchliffe from Alpine Getaways for helping with accommodating our performers and other logistical support;
  • Sue Marshall at Avalon House for hosting our Thursday night pick;
  • Joan and Bob Spencer for helping us with using the Community Hall;
  • Phil Horner from the Harrietville Times who has helped us with many things including getting maps of the town for our visitors;
  • John Bakkum, who worked tirelessly in the lead up to the event helping us with everything to do with the setup. He was then on hand during the event and was back again for pack-down on Monday.  I couldn’t keep up with him;
  • Diane and Angela Gibb at Bella’s for agreeing to put on more lunch food to ensure that we had enough take-away in the town, when we learned that the General Store would be closed due to a family wedding;
  • Emma and the staff at Morries Icecreamry for also putting on more food and providing extra supplies for our visitors;
    Ben Knox for supplying us with great coffee and snacks all weekend;
  • Jan Fleming and Peter and Annette from the General Store.

There are a lot of other people in Harrietville who have also helped us behind the scenes. I thank you all.


A big thanks to our sponsors:

  • Regional Development Victoria;
  • The Alpine Shire Council – and staff Julieann Martin, Mel Tekin and Kayla Robinson;
  • John Copley for providing one his fabulous guitars for our raffle;
  • Tex and Fi from Big Tree T Shirts who not only printed out T shirts but provided a great design for this year;
  • The Alpine Observer and the Harrietville Times;
  • Active Print for printing the program;
  • Ed and Nene Gardiner from Casbak Alpine Units who donated Blackwood Lodge for our performers;
  • Hilary and Michael Morgan from Mountain View Retreat for providing their hall as a venue;
  • Brian and Meryl from Harrietville Cabins and Caravan Park for putting up some of our performers;
  • Bill Brown from Ride Tuff Trailers (horse floats and custom trailers) who made our A frame signs for the main street.

Local suppliers

Thank you to:

  • 24Seven Events from Wangaratta for the marquee, stage and chairs
  • Dawson’s Rural Supplies for extra chairs
  • Active Print in Wodonga and Wagga Wagga for printing the program
  • Pacific Hire for the very stylish (and clean!) porta-loos
  • Tony Boon from Professional Audio Services for the PA in the marquee

Organising committees 2013 and 2014

I’d also like to thank all the members of the now two previous outgoing organising committees for Mountaingrass:

  • Will Manovel who did a huge amount to stage the inaugural festival and bring it back into the Harrietville community;
  • Greg McGrath who has spent hours building and maintaining the ABOTMA and MountainGrass websites and wrangling the purchase of tickets online;
  • George Jackson for putting together a fabulous program this year and negotiating to have Chris Henry on the bill at the last moment;
  • Mick O’Neill who produced the performance schedule apparently on his laptop while travelling the US, and endured countless changes with good humour and great fortitude;
  • Geoff Brigland who put together a great program of workshops; Lachlan Davidson, our President this year, for convincing Special Consensus to come all the way from the US to a tiny little two pub town in Australia;
  • our outgoing secretary Sue Dwyer who somehow managed to produce great minutes despite the challenges of doing it via teleconference with everyone speaking at once;
  • Karita Brokenshire our Treasurer for keeping us on track financially, paying the bills, and doing an extraordinary job running the Registration desk, our ‘Mission Control’, with her lovely children Matilda and Callum and friend Bindy;
  • Peter Jackson who helped me throughout the year with logistics and did a magnificent job dressing the stage in the marquee (and enabling those beautiful silhouettes);
  • Kimberly Wheeler for helping with setup and a lot of last minute media and publicity in Victoria including an interview on radio in Mount Beauty; and John O’Donnell and Garry Digney who also helped with media and publicity.
  • Thanks too to Michael Whelan for securing an RDV grant and John Tait for running our very successful raffle this year.
    We are also indebted to the Mountain Pickers Association, with Jim and Angus Golding and Andrew Barcham, who have run the Mountain Pickers Stage at the Mountain View Retreat Hall.

Many people others have directly supported us this year including:

  • Barbara Chapman for auditing our 2013 accounts;
  • Angela Whitehead for helping with graphic design;
  • Andrew Barchem for producing a map for the program at the midnight hour;
  • Jenine Abarbanel for social media, news bulletins and website updates;
  • The Davidson Brothers, The Kissin’ Cousins, Kim Wheeler, Pete Fidler and Peter Denahy for social media and radio publicity.


We’ve had a fabulous team of volunteers on the ground during the event. A big thanks goes to Shirley and David Hardiman; Ray Mow; John and Susan Boothroyd; Sarah and Gerard Gunn; Rudi and Julie Nielsen; Michelle Clark; Howard Gadd; Bruce Packard, Alison Chapman, Bede Nowland, John Tait, Gerald Pink, Laurie Grundy, Chip Bragg, Laurie Brett, Diane Aumann; Annette Schofield, Julie and Ingrid, Dave Hellens, Eleanor Kramer, Fay and Alan Davidson, Barry Torkington, and a lovely lady and her grandson, whose name escapes me, who helped us out on the day.

There are many, many others who also helped out on the day and from afar (including Will Manovel and Blair Webb). Please accept our sincere thanks if I have not acknowledged you here.


What a great lineup we had this year! Thank you to all of our bands and musicians for coming and entertaining us and for donating a cd, or two, or three to our raffle.

MCs and Venue Managers: 

A huge thanks to our MCs and Venue Managers who kept the shows running and on time: Leonard Cohen; Lindsay Clapperton; Michael Whelan; Keith Lugton; Gerard V; Mick O’Neill; John Boothroyd; Mike Kear; Mary Whelan; Garry and Chris Digney; Anna Xeni and Sue Dwyer.

Sound crew
Thank you to our sound crew: Mark Woods here in the marquee; Jack Jensen in the Community Hall and the Harrietville Hotel Motel; and Don Gula in the Snowline on Friday night. And thanks too to Andrew Houghton, ex RMIT, and this year’s RMIT sound production students Luke Clarke and Devon Jones.

Thanks to all of you who approached me during Mountaingrass with offers of help for next year. I really appreciate it and will be in touch with you in 2015. If you would like to help in any way with a job, be it big or small, to help us put on next year’s festival please get in touch.

Finally, thanks to all of you for coming to Mountaingrass 2014. See you all next year.

Helen Ludellen
Operations Manager, 2014