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Family Friendly Guide to Dark Mofo 2018

Hush now, little darlings, or you’ll be cast out into the night. Don’t ugly cry—it’s not a punishment! Our city is under a winter spell and you’re about to be swept up in the enchantment.

Parents, presenting our family friendly guide to navigating Dark Mofo with your little angels (or devils). It’s our gift to you, for raising your little gifts to the world.

1. Dark Park

The mind-bending, delight-inducing wonder that is Dark Park appears like magic in the night. Skip through the gate—a portal to another world—and dance along the edges of light and dark.

Explore open spaces, dark corners and abandoned warehouses with alienesque sounds, illuminated orbs, laser sculptures, smoke and fire, a creepy puppet show, a giant cave spider, and interactive art installations. For the parents—who, sadly, time has robbed of bountiful energy and effortless heat—mulled cider and food truck fare will keep your old(er) bones warm.

Follow the crowd to Macquarie Point [free entry].
Friday 15 to Sunday 17 + Thursday 21 to Sunday 24 June, 5pm – 10pm.

Image: @jackrsutton/Instagram

2. Ogoh-Ogoh: The Purging + The Burning

Afraid of spiders? Write down your fear and pop it in the giant spider, darling. Every year at Dark Park, little (and big) boys and girls scribble down their worries and throw them into the belly of the ogoh-ogoh—a demon-like sculpture derived from Balinese Hindu tradition. This year, the beast is shaped like a Tasmanian cave spider (day trip to Hastings Caves, anyone?)

Purge your fears via the leggy demon at Dark Park until Sunday, 24 June. On this solemn date, the beast will scuttle over to Parliament Lawns and prepare to kiss this earthly world goodbye. Take your budding pyromaniacs to Parliament Lawns and join the 5pm ceremonial procession, travelling around the waterfront to Dark Park, where the ogoh-ogoh (and all our fears) will ogoh up in flames.

Image: @kelliereevesphotography/Instagram

3. Dark Mofo + City of Hobart Winter Feast

Food, sweet food, and cider, and wine, and more food, and candles, and music, and fire, and more food again… The Dark Mofo + City of Hobart Winter Feast is a feast for all of your senses! There’s a huge range of mouthwatering delicacies to choose from (including gluten free, vegetarian and vegan delights), so there’s bound to be something to suit everyone.

Taste as much as you can at Princes Wharf 1.
Friday 15 to Sunday 17 + Thursday 21 to Sunday 24 June, from 4pm.
Tickets on the door (u/16 free). Free after 8pm nightly + Sunday 24 June.

rosiehastie Feast
Image: @rosiehastie/Instagram

4. Panopticon II

It’s next level live TV, kids. Take a peek in the windows around the School of Creative Arts and see what the students are up to. Each window is set up differently for Panopticon II. Some of the people behind the glass like to interact with the crowd, resulting in a few giggles.

Prowl around the School of Creative Arts, UTAS [free].
Friday 15 to Sunday 17 + Thursday 21 to Sunday 24 June, 5pm – 10pm.

Image: @_jacquibevenphotography_/Instagram

5. Paint the Town Red

Hobart is burning up and you can’t fight this fever with Children’s Panadol. Hotels, shops, bars, eateries, public buildings and structures, and residents are lighting the night with red lights and decorations. What a warm welcome to everyone out in the cold exploring Dark Mofo!

There’s also a #pttr2018 photography competition, with some wonderful prizes up for grabs (check out our hot tips on where to find the lights).

Image: @lifecatchme/Instagram

6. Mona

Ah, the mothership. If your kiddos are Batman fans, they’ll be frothing to see Ryoji Ikeda’s spectra! This epic pillar of light is coming back to live at Mona permanently. Head to Mona’s grounds for its return on the winter solstice (Thursday 21 to Sunday 24 June, from sunset to sunrise). You can probably drop a dad joke about reaching for the stars or something.

In the opposite hours, between dawn and dusk, check out Spectrum Chamber (atop Pharos, Mona’s new wing)—it’s a magical room of rainbows!

As for the actual museum, a visit is likely to result in some hairy questions from little ones. There’s a lot of awesome stuff that kids will find captivating (legend has it there’s a furry seat that purrs like a big cat if you stroke it, and the poo machine holds a particular allure for youngsters)—just cover their eyes in the MA15+ bits. And maybe avoid a certain wall celebrating the diversity of the female form (unless you’re looking for an opportunity to have ‘the talk’).

rosiehastie spectra
Image: @rosiehastie/Instagram

7. Wildlife: Troy Emery

Discover a technicolour menagerie of imagined creatures, lurking in the corners of Rosny Barn. As captivating as these colourful creatures are to look at, this exhibition is more than just a pretty face—Wildlife confronts us with the knotty history of our relationship with non-human animals.

Lurking at Rosny Barn.
Wednesday 6 to Friday 29 June, 11am – 5pm.

See the full program for more info.

We love it when you share your adventures with us! Share your snaps by tagging @hobartandbeyond and using #HobartandBeyond on Instagram and Facebook – we’ll share our favourite pics on social media and in the blog.

Related posts:
Like a Moth to a Flame: #PTTR2018 Photo Competition
Dark Mofo 2018: Our Ultimate Guide
12 Accommodation Options for Dark Mofo
Up in Flames! Six Highlights of Dark Mofo 2017

Header image:

Isabel Galloway

For more great events in southern Tasmania, be sure to visit our Events page.

We love it when you share your adventures with us! Share your snaps by tagging @hobartandbeyond and using #HobartandBeyond on Instagram and Facebook – we’ll share our favourite pics on social media and in the blog.

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We acknowledge the Tasmanian Aboriginal people and their enduring custodianship of lutruwita / Tasmania. We honour 40,000 years of uninterrupted care, protection and belonging to these islands, before the invasion and colonisation of European settlement.

As a destination that welcomes visitors to these lands, we acknowledge our responsibility to represent to our visitors, Tasmania’s deep and complex history, fully, respectfully and truthfully.

We acknowledge the Aboriginal people who continue to care for this country today. We pay our respects to their elders, past and present. We honour their stories, songs, art, and culture, and their aspirations for the future of their people and these lands. We respectfully ask that tourism be a part of that future.

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Tasmanian Travel and Information Centre
16-20 Davey St, Hobart TAS 7000

(03) 6238 4222

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