Albury’s botanic gardens will be transformed into a fairyland of face-painting, fairyfloss and fabulous fun for the first Border Unicorn Festival on Sunday.
There’s no end to the enchantment on offer between 10am and 1pm with a kaleidoscope of unicorn-themed craft, cupcakes, clothing and copious amounts of coffee (for the young-at-heart).
The event aims to add a little sparkle to raising awareness of a rare genetic condition called Williams Syndrome (WS), which affects about 1 in 10,000 Australians.
WS involves a spontaneous deletion of genetic material on chromosome 7, and comes with a range of medical problems and developmental delays.
These learning challenges often occur side by side with highly social personalities and an affinity for music.
Howlong’s Robyn Statham – whose daughter Olive, 3, has Williams Syndrome – and her sister Bronwyn McCormack came up with the idea for the festival after visiting a similar event in Melbourne.
Combine a unicorn-mad family of girls with a cause close to the heart and you’ve got a magical recipe for success.
Mrs Statham said Olive’s friendly nature and love of life was also part of the inspiration for the family-friendly day out.
The sisters hope the event can raise close to $10,000 for the Williams Syndrome Family Support Group (Vic), which provides assistance to families who have a child or adult with the condition.
The group aims to empower those with WS to reach their full potential.
We’re all pretty excited about the festival in this household.Robyn Statham
Since the disorder is not always immediately diagnosed, Mrs Statham would like to see some funds used to provide resources for parents, teachers, employers and the medical profession.
If the response on social media and around the community is anything to go by, the gardens should be bursting with excited unicorn fans come Sunday.
“We’re all pretty excited about the festival in this household,” Mrs Statham laughed.
“Preparations are coming along and it looks like the weather gods have answered our prayers.
“We’d like to say a huge thankyou to all our sponsors and the local businesses and community groups who have been so generous in their support for this event.”
In addition to specialty craft and food stalls, the event will include a jumping castle, face-painting, balloon artists, a mane makeover station (think sparkles and hair), unicorn rides and a glitter tattoo booth – all for a gold coin donation.
Local Goodstart Early Learning Centres will provide DIY craft stations for kids to make magical artwork while Albury’s Flyaway Gynmastic will have a mini-circuit to try.
Mouse and Moo (hip hop for kids that parents will love too) will perform on stage at 10.30am and 11.45am.
For more details visit the Border Unicorn Festival facebook page.