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Tuesday, July 11, 2017


For the past several months, Aussies had been mentioning a light festival and saying we had to check it out. "Oh! And don't miss the light festival. The boys will love it." So when we started realizing this was A Thing, we looked into it a bit more.

Vivid Sydney started in 2009 as a way to bring attention to energy efficiency. The first year projected light paintings onto both sides of the Opera House.

Vivid has grown steadily and has been a huge success for Sydney. This year there were 12 major installations around the city, including the Opera House, Darling Harbour, the Harbour Bridge and the Taronga Zoo. In addition to spectacular light displays (some of which are interactive), the 23-day festival sought to bring together music and ideas.

A boat lit up for Vivid

We were so fortunate to have an awesome friend visiting from NY who was excited to check it all out. We made a booking (translation: got tickets) for Fleet Foxes at the Opera House, hopped aboard a ferry and made our way to Circular Quay. Holy moly -- there were a ton of people! Sydney is a big city by Aussie standards (about 5 million people in the Sydney area) and Vivid expected to draw about 2.5 million people to the festival.

At 6PM each evening of the festival, as the sun had set (remember it's winter here now!),  the lights came on! A 15 minute continuously moving light show illuminated the sails of the Opera House. It was like a really cool screen saver morphing from image to image. Wow!

The artist, Ash Bolland, titled the work Audio Creatures and said it featured a cast of fantastical land and sea creatures.

Most of the city gets into Vivid. Below is a picture of the Harbour Bridge and some boats lit up. The energy is awesome!

Harbour Bridge

Later during the Vivid festival, after our trip to Uluru, we went with another family to the Taronga Zoo. The zoo creates enormous light displays from recycled materials highlighting animals it is working to conserve -- Port Jackson shark, marine turtle, bees and more. It was great fun and we really enjoyed the zoo.

The Taronga Zoo ferry decorated for Vivid

Light display at the entrance to the zoo.

Riding the zoo's sky tram for an aerial view with our friend!

Sumatran Tiger

Honey Bees

Port Jackson Shark and marine turtles.

E said, "Vivid was awesome. I liked seeing vivid." M said, "Nothing. I don't want to work on the blog, mommy." Sigh.

I've been slacking a bit on the blog. This might seem bad, but I think it's really good! I've passed the homesick stage and sometimes forget I live in Australia so far away from everything I knew before. We're just into life, and it feels really awesome! I was volun-told / coerced into co-chairing a huge event at the boys school and that has been taking up a lot of my (blog writing?) time. I'm co-chairs with one of my dear friends and I'm so thankful for that. It has also been a great way to meet new people and use my skills for something really great.

The boys are on school holiday for the next three weeks. They'll be doing some camps for the first two weeks, then we're jetting off to THAILAND! More then...

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