Mt Barker festival to open doors

By Charlotte Wooldridge | posted on December 6, 2020

SPLASHES of colour and intriguing artworks can be found across Mount Barker for the next few months, with the inaugural Festival of Doors enticing tourists to explore the town.

Intended to be a lead-in event to the Mountain and Murals Festival, the Festival of Doors has become a success in its own right, with more than 100 transformed doors submitted for display by the local community.

Organiser and local woodworker George Corke said the response from the community, both young and old, had been tremendous.

“All these people have done these creations with no expectations of prizes, it’s just for community involvement and to make Mount Barker a more attractive place for visitors,” he said.

“They all just want to do something nice for Mount Barker, they don’t expect anything in return.”

Mount Barker Police Officer-in-Charge Sergeant David Johnson said he was pleased to see the results of combining his love of art with positive policing taking effect across the town.

“We found with the mural event last year we had no phone calls to police in Mount Barker for a week, and crime now is down 68 per cent,” he said.

“I find the more stuff you can include the community in, the more pride they have in their community.

“If your town’s vibrant, people are here, and your shops are full, that social element who don’t want to conform to the normal principles of society stay away, because we’re inundated by people who are here for the positive reasons.”

While there are no confirmed plans to run the Festival of Doors again, tourists and locals alike could see another lead-in event before the Mountains and Murals Festival in November next year.

“I also want to thank Pardelup Prison as well for allowing the Section 95 prisoners to come out and assist myself and George in putting them up,” Sgt Johnson said.

“It’s important we mention them because those prisoners have a huge impact in town and are involved in a lot of stuff with support of the Superintendent Jodi Miller.”

The public are welcome to observe the doors and vote for their favourites at various voting booths across town.

Winners will be announced at a collaborative event with the Great Southern Wine Producers on January 24.