Theme dinner party shenanigans at the 2017 Whitsunday Latin Festival.
Theme dinner party shenanigans at the 2017 Whitsunday Latin Festival. summerrainphotography

Latin vibes on the beach

WHITSUNDAY Latin Festival 2018 will be the biggest and last with three days of salsa hips, friends and dips.

Director of the non-for-profit club Latin Madness Jane Streeter has organised the event in the Whitsundays for the the past four years and attended it before that and said the event has to be nationally recognised on the latin dance festival calendar.

"It's definitely developed over the past few years, to included more workshops, parties and activities,” she said.

In 2017 the event relocated from Cape Glouscter to Shingley Beach and the My Rainbow Cafe post Cyclone Debbie, which turned out to produce the biggest and best festival to date.

"Over a 100 people came, this year we're looking at the same numbers with the same great site space.”

"This year we have 12 visiting instructors and four local instructors and two percussion workshops.

Visiting professionals that will travel to instruct are World Bachata Champions Mitch and Ellicia, World Salsa Solo Champion Artia Zandian, Australian Solo Salsa Champion Pascale "Salsette” Dernocoure, Zouk World Champion Alisson Sandi, World Salsa Champion Alex Bryan, Dancing with the Star's Luke and Sara of K and L Kizomba, Jimmy and Kylie of K and L Brazilian Zouk.

Passes to workshops can be purchased for those unable to commit to three days of activities and will cost you roughly what you lunch and latte does.

A three-day pass will get you into all of the 33 workshops, parties, a themed dinner, cover all your feeding on Saturday, a Sundowner sunset cruise followed by an invite to dinner at Mika on Sunday for just $329.

"The first of the 33 workshops will start at 1.30pm on Friday and the last at 2.30pm on Sunday.”

"Friday night will wrap up with a party, performances and a barbecue.”

"The two-course theme dinner on Saturday night is always the highlight of the event as everybody gets involved, this year is Neptune's Garden themed.”

"With three parties, this will be a weekend you will never to forget.”

Accommodation at Shingley Beach Resort can still be arranged for all of the options check the package options.

"Everybody forms friendships and connections in the group activities, local dancers get the opportunity to dance at a big city like event sharing the love of Latin dance with others.”

"All the workshops are open level, learn the basics at are regular Tuesday and Friday classes at Vartamana Yoga's shop.”

"All of the artists are big names in the Australian dance world, their personalities are a big part of the selection process.

"I consider all of them to be my friends and look forward to introducing them to the locals.”

Dancers travel from interstate for the festival with many returning over the years, "a lot of people from Townsville have booked this year”.

Due to the large number of events on the Latin Dance Festival Calendar it has been hard to confirm numbers early for the Whitsunday event despite its popularity, therefore Ms Streeter has decided this year will be the last.

"It's a challenge to get early commitment, which places a lot of stress on me as an organiser to ensure we don't lose money as Latin Madness is a non-for-profit club.”

"I have other ideas for more intimate events that I'd like to do in the future as an alternative.”

"We have weekly classes in Airlie Beach at Vartamana on Tuesday and Fridays, there's also a Latin Madness chapter in Mackay.”

For more information on pricing and to book checkout the website, direct enquiries to streeter.jane@gmail.com via email or Phone on 0405 118 127.

Latin Vibes

WHAT: Whitsunday Latin Festival 2018

WHEN: Friday May 18- Sunday May 20.

WHERE: Shingley Beach Resort.

COST: three day pass $329.