Ms JENNY AITCHISON (Maitland)—This weekend writers and visual artists will descend upon the city of Maitland for the second annual Artastique Festival and the inaugural Indie Festival, or IF. It will be wonderful to see Maitland celebrate writing, publishing and visual artworks through events that take creative works from the halls and walls and into public spaces. Artastique turns all of central Maitland into a living art gallery.

Visual artists register to provide their works, and our Maitland retailers register to display the art. The event has proved so popular that in only its second year, Artastique has boomed from 45 entrants to about 120 applicants. Maitland boasts a proud pedigree of writers, artists, musicians and performers and I am delighted to see these festivals so well received by the people of our community. I encourage all our retailers to support our arts community in this exciting and innovative initiative of Maitland City Council and Mayor Councillor Loretta Baker.