Cairns Amateurs - President's Welcome Cocktail Party

Region’s social highlight on ice until 2021

With the future uncertain during current COVID-19 restrictions the committee of Cairns Amateurs Carnival have announced they had no choice but cancel this year’s annual event.

The decision made at Friday’s committee meeting places this year’s event on ice until 9-11 September 2021 when it is anticipated social restrictions will have lifted allowing the region’s biggest social event of the year to proceed as per its 63-year tradition.

Cairns Amateurs Carnival Committee President Ross Moller said that while the horse racing fixture will proceed this year as a patron-free event, there were just too many unknowns at play in delivering the social program in the way, shape and form people expect.

“The current border restrictions, economic hardships impacting both people’s disposable income and corporate sponsorships, meant there was just too much riding against a Cairns Amateurs Carnival in 2020,” Mr Moller said.

Commenting on Friday’s decision, Racing Queensland’s CEO Brendan Parnell said the Cairns Amateurs has served a true highlight on the Far North Queensland social calendar for more than half a century.

“The Carnival epitomises everything that is great about racing from the on-course action to the fashion and everything in between.

“It is one of the state’s great events.

“Racing has a key role to play in driving Queensland’s post-pandemic tourism recovery and we look forward to seeing the Amateurs return bigger and better in 2021,” Mr Parnell said.

For fashionistas who will miss the glamour of this year’s spring racing season, there is a light on the horizon with Cairns Amateurs decided to host its own virtual Fashions on the Field.

Cairns Amateurs Carnival Event Manager Victoria Jennings said she has already assembled a stellar judging panel from around Australia and looks forward to releasing entry and prize details in coming months.

“After the success of our Easter bonnet parade earlier in the year we are also looking at having a children’s and family racewear category that will be fun for families who love dressing up,” Ms Jennings said.

The 63rd Cairns Amateurs Carnival will take place 9-11 September 2021.