As the weather picks up and spring takes hold, Ballarat looks toward the annual celebration of warmer weather and tram-pulling.
Organisers have pushed SpringFest’s peak event, the Sunday Market, back to November 29 to give it a greater chance of escaping the poor weather that marred last year’s event.
There is another first in the festival’s 15th year.
Power FM’s Jules Zass and WIN TV anchor Bruce Roberts will both be ambassadors.
Mr Roberts has done the job before but Ms Zass, who was announced as ambassador at the official launch on Thursday, will get to spruik it for the first time professionally this year.
“We’re going to be getting out to as many events as possible, and spruiking Springfest to as many people as possible,” she said.
“I’m really looking forward to market Sunday being pushed back until later this year, so I think we’ve got a chance of some beautiful weather.”
“I love the market, I love watching the tram pull. I love the dragon boating, (and) I’m looking forward to going to the fashion fest this year, out at the Novotel. That should be really fun as well, with a little high tea, and fashion. Who doesn’t love tiny cakes and dresses?”
Director of the festival for Rotary Robert Glass said they were working hard to keep the now well-established festival an important part of the Ballarat calendar.
“We’ve got some new sponsors, in general we’re working hard to keep people interested, so we’ll keep renewing the festival,” he said.
Last year’s market was hit by bad weather but crowd numbers still registered a big jump on 2013, to an estimated 24,000.
The focus of the festival is the fundraising efforts, and there is a big goal for 2015.
This year 16 organisations will benefit, and Rotary aims to raise $100,000.
Rotary will continue accepting stall bookings for November 29, and Mr Glass said they 260 sites locked up already of the 450 available.
Ms Zass off to a competitive start in her new shared job.
“We’re really looking forward to tackling both the events together, maybe even going up against each other in the tram pull, or maybe the Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute dragon boat race,” she said.
“I’ve seen Bruce’s arms, he doesn’t have very big guns, so I think I’d take him out in that one.”