Moomba Festival

13 Mar

Moomba Festival!

Last Friday night, H and I went to the Moomba Festival, which is Melbourne’s annual community festival, to kick off our long Labour Day weekend. We mostly just went for the carnival rides and fireworks, so we didn’t see the parade or any of the waterskiing.

No one was able to explain to me what Moomba means or why they have this festival. But it’s been an annual event for many years, so maybe it’s so old that no one remembers anymore.

It was ultra crowded and ultra loud, with stuff set up on both sides of the river, necessitating a very out-of-the-way walk to get between the two sides.

The super cool spinning ride

We ended up going on two rides. One was a spinning ride and the other was bumper cars. Most rides cost between $6 and $10 per person, so it gets expensive pretty quickly and we decided we’d rather not spend a lot of money on it. Well, I would have gone on the spinning ride again- several times over, in fact- but H gets sick on spinning rides and was looking very green after just one go, so I didn’t think I could persuade him to go again.

H seemed to think I would be disappointed by the carnival rides because I am used to being able to go to major amusement parks in America where they have top-rated roller coasters. I had to explain to him that we do have carnival rides in America and that I have been on them at various county and state fairs. I certainly wasn’t expecting anything like Cedar Point.

Of course, in America, a lot of times you can just get a ride wristband for $20 or $30 or something like that and go on as many rides as you want. That wasn’t an option at Moomba. You had to pay for each ride individually and they were, in my opinion, way overpriced.

One of the “big kid” rides

That said, the rides were better at Moomba than what I’d normally expect to see at a county fair, with several “high thrill” rides, flinging riders high into the air and flipping them upside down and around, along with more typical carnival rides like a Ferris wheel, carousel, and funhouses. I think in terms of variety, Moomba offered a bit more for older kids and adults, whereas most carnivals I’ve ever been to focus mainly on kiddie rides.

There were plenty of eating options, but what I disliked was the number of fast food chains that were there instead of more typical fair food. My favourite foods at any fair are sugared donut holes and corn dogs, but the closest thing I could find at Moomba were churros with powdered sugar and chocolate sauce. If anyone was selling corn dogs, I didn’t see it.

Fireworks over the river

Towards the end of the night, they shot off fireworks over the river. Since it was so crowded, we didn’t even try to get a seat on the banks, but as long as you weren’t behind a tree, you could see them from anywhere. It was only a 10 minute show, but it was pretty impressive. H had never been to see fireworks before. He’d seen them from a distance on a occasion, but it’s not really the same. I was glad that he finally got a chance to see them up close and while he tried to play it cool, I could tell he was quite impressed. Obviously, it’s a bit more impressive when you’re a small child, but better late than never!

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