Amid sweltering conditions and a “feels like” temperature of 46 degrees, people have flocked to Bellingen to enjoy week-long courses in visual arts, crafts, dance, lifestyle, music, voice, writing, photography and more.
The “camping” aspect is mostly figurative these days, with people dispersed among a variety of accommodation types but the “creative” part of the name has been constant for the decades Camp Creative has been operating.
For Rob and Michelle Stockton, who are in their fourth year as coordinators, the work involved in organising an event that caters for 900 people barely finishes before planning for the next one begins.
Not only do they arrange tutors, venues and bookings for about 70 courses, they help people with transport and also offer an accommodation service, matching visitors with locals renting out a spare room.
And they stage some hugely popular events, like the Celebrity Concert on Tuesday night, the Sunset Party in the park on Thursday and the Grande Final Concert on Friday.
This year, they’ve tried to extend the demographic of the campers, which is predominantly women aged 55-75, with group booking discounts designed to appeal to families and new courses for older men in fly fishing and chainsaw carving.