There are various family friendly events held in the Grampians Region throughout the year. The main tourist hub, Halls Gap, is host to several large events including the Halls Gap Jazz Festival on the second weekend in February, Grampians Grape Escape on the first weekend in May, the Grampians Wildflower Show on the first weekend in October. Other popular events in Halls gap include the Old Skool Hot Rod Run, Grampians Textiles, Run the Gap and the Halls Gap Film Festival.
The famous Stawell Gift race is of course held in Stawell and this event runs over the Easter break each year where entries from all over the state and country come to compete.
Grampians Music Festival - February
The Grampians Music Festival - a new event and new format to replace the 'Halls Gap Jazz Festival'. This will be a small and friendly festival held on a private paddock just behind the Halls Gap town centre. With beautiful views all around you will be able to sit back, relax and take in the sights whilst listening to the array of bands performing.
Old Skool Hot Rod Run - February
The Old Skool Hot Rod Club is based in Horsham and was formed by a couple of ‘old car’ enthusiasts in 2005 with the aim to raise funds for the bushfire recovery scheme. There are now over 30 members and this year’s event will assist with funding for the 2011 storm and flood damage.
Around 150 hot rod custom vehicles from all over Victoria and also interstate participate each year. Hot Rod cars were originally built between 1920 and 1965.
The Hot Rods take a scenic drive through the Grampians and then return to Halls Gap to put their vehicles on display. There is also entertainment and live music as well as a goods auction at the Halls Gap Hall.
Held on the third weekend of February
Grampians Grape Escape - May
The Grampians Grape Escape celebrates the fine food and wine that is produced in the local region by holding their annual festival at the beginning of May each year.
Organisers of the event aim to provide a relaxed atmosphere for visitors and stall holders to come together to share their produce, wine making experience and their stories in a magnificent setting in the Grampians National Park.
Celebrity chefs delight in being a part of this festival and join in with the live cooking demonstrations that are held over the course of the weekend.
With so many wineries in the local region and new varieties being created constantly, there is certainly no shortage of wine tasting available.
The Festival also hosts live music, a barrique auction, entertainment for kids and over 100 stallholders with their own specialty products such as fresh fruit and veg, gourmet meats, olives, cakes, honey, beer and wine.
More than 8000 visitors attended last year and the numbers are growing each time.
Held at the Halls Gap Oval on the first weekend of May (Saturday and Sunday)
After a very successful first year in 2012, Event organisers are excited to see ‘Run the Gap’ as a regular on the Grampians Events Calendar.
The clearly marked course has two runs to choose from; either a 6km walk/run from the Halls Gap town centre to Brambuk Cultural Centre and return or the 11.5km run that continues on to Lake Bellfield with a lap across the wall and then return back to Halls Gap.
Times are recorded using electronic chip timing, a complimentary barbeque brunch is provided by the Halls Gap Community Group and medals to overall place winners in the run events and to all children participating, compliments of Livefast Café.
This is also a fundraising event to assist in the ongoing improvements to walking and bike paths in the local area.
Held on the fourth Sunday of May in Halls Gap
Stawell Gift - Easter
Four days of athletic action and family entertainment, otherwise known as the Stawell Gift, takes place over the Easter break each year and is the oldest short distance running race in Australia.
The race is run on grass over 120 metres up a slight gradient and Competitors are handicapped according to their form.
The event begins on Friday at the Stawell Town Hall with the Calcutta and Call of the Card. The draw is released and raffle tickets bought and then begins when the auctioneer calls for bids for each heat.
The weekend is family friendly including a festival at Central Park on Saturday with entertainment and activities such as a fashion parade, Fashions on the Field for the best dressed lady and a betting ring. Sunday has many children’s activities and live performances as well as coaching clinics.
The final event is held on Monday with live television coverage and a first prize of $40,000.
Held over the Easter Break in Stawell
Grampians Wildflower Show - October
For four days on the first weekend in October, the Grampians Wildflower Show organisers pay tribute to the natural surrounding beauty of the Grampians National Park where the state’s highest number of wildflowers can be found.
The show highlights include; twice daily bus tours, exhibits, interpretive and historic displays, workshops, children’s activities and crafts.
The event is held at Centenary Hall, Halls Gap | 9.30am to 5 pm daily. Entry is $5 ($4 concession) per person and free for children under 16.