Stu Joy, of Sydney, kicks back after setting up his tent at the Tropical Fruits camp site at the Lismore Showgrounds.
Stu Joy, of Sydney, kicks back after setting up his tent at the Tropical Fruits camp site at the Lismore Showgrounds. Marc Stapelberg

Fruits campers compete for most glamorous site

CAMPING is set to reach capacity at the Tropical Fruits base at the Lismore Showgrounds, as the festival continues to gain momentum around the world.

Tents decked out in fairly lights, rainbow flags, pink flamingos and luxury inflatable pools were competing for the title of the festival’s most glamorous camp site – or “glampsite”.

The competition was held last night, ahead of today’s New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Patrons of The Shirley Temple acted as judges, charged with the difficult task of deciding which camp site was the most glamorous.

The Temple has been a camp ground hub for about five years, with a dedicated committee organising themes and decorations months in advance.

For occupants Ned Lidbury and Theo Papamanolis, who travelled from Brisbane and Sydney, camping in between events added to the whole experience.

“For me, a big draw card is the camping experience,” Mr Lidbury said.

“We’re here starting from the twenty-seventh right up until the third, so it’s just camping, sitting around with friends, socialising, all of that stuff.

“It feels very warm and embracing and it’s really nice that the Lismore community embraces Tropical Fruits so much and makes us feel very welcome.”

Mr Papamanolis said Tropical Fruits was an annual calendar highlight for most of the festival’s regulars.

“The New Year’s Eve party and the recovery party and the pool party are awesome but the camping experience is actually really cool as well,” he said.

“When Fruits finished last year we started the countdown straight away.”

Tropical Fruits camping organisers and volunteers Angel Carrasco and Ashley van Houten said numbers were on track for one of the festival’s biggest years yet.

“On the first day we had many more people than normal,” Mr van Houten said.

“We tell people each year (to) come early or register early if you don’t want to miss out because unfortunately that has happened.”

Mr Carrasco said there were campers coming from as far as Germany and Switzerland, with close to 700 expected in total.

“The last couple of years we’ve seen the festival expand from only the New Year’s Eve party to this whole camping experience, which has been really great.”



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