DREAM Festival lantern parade a popular part of the event | Photos, Video

More than $300,000 was injected into the Dubbo community from the 2016 DREAM Festival and organisers are confident the figure will only grow this year.

Dubbo Regional Council has supported the DREAM Festival financially since 2011. As part of the funding the committee is required to provide a report to council detailing its achievements.

Almost 12,000 attendees were recorded at the DREAM Festival, the report states, with a conservative estimate of 2,750 visiting from other areas. With an average spend of $134 per person per night, the economic injection into the Dubbo economy from out-of-town attendances across the festival period is about $368,500.

Council’s director community services David Dwyer said: “It is the iconic event which Dubbo has kept going for quite a while now and it’s growing in popularity”.

“The festival now has an expenditure of $144,000 so it is a considerable sized festival and as I said it’s growing in popularity every year.”

While the festival spent $144,000 last year, it was slightly less than the profit the event made. The event operated at a loss of $4,700, however Mr Dwyer said the deficit was covered from funds held in reserve.

The committee said the loss was due to the inclement weather which impacted on the Twilight Markets- one of he biggest events of the festival.

Despite that, 9,000 people attended the Lantern Parade and Markets in October. There were also 600 people who took part in the parade.

It was one of the highlights, Mr Dwyer said.

“The social, health, learning and community involvement outcomes of the festival are significant to add to to Dubbo’s reputation as a vibrant community and a community capable of conducting and hosting major events,” he said.

As well as council contributing $40,000 to this year’s DREAM Festival, Destination NSW has also given $20,000.

It was pleasing to note the festival was being recognised by tourism organisations and the NSW government, Mr Dwyer said.

DREAM Festival chair Anne Field said the funding would help promote the DREAM Festival to visitors far and wide.