404 King St Newtown 2042 Sydney Australia

The Newtown Festival


Newtown Festival is an annual event that hosts over 100,000 people and has been running for 39 years. Most Sydneysiders have visited, or at least know of the festival and its great food and entertainment.

What most people don’t know is that Newtown Festival is produced by Newtown Neighbourhood Centre as its major fundraiser. The Centre provides community support services to locals who are doing it tough. NNC approached Capstone Collective to assist in making festival punters aware of this and some advice on maximising the impact the festival has on the Centres services.

So we brought together a group of people that represented each of the 12 stakeholder groups involved with the festival and got them talking.

  1. Capstone facilitated a workshop with this group that identified 7 measurable, tweetable objectives
  2. We then facilitated a second creative thinking workshop that developed over 50 different concepts and ideas that would assist in achieving these objectives
  3. Finally we internally briefed NNC on a consolidation of the sessions that recommended the best concepts to develop into the festival and start the planning process

The first big win was the development of the overarching purpose of the event.

‘Newtown Neighbourhood Centre (NNC) is striving for Newtown Festival to be the biggest and best festival for social change in Australia.’ 

Capstone Collective didn’t create this purpose, but we created the environment and lead the discussions to develop it. This purpose statement shows alignment between the festival, the Centre and it’s core objectives.

Next, the stakeholder group developed the following measurable, tweetable objectives to govern the planning and delivery of the event, not just this year, but into the future

1. As the primary fundraiser for NNC, we are aiming to double the revenue raised over the next two years. This is essential to enable NNC to continue serving the community
2. We want to ensure all partners have a positive experience with the Festival and return the following year to build on their contribution
3. We need to find out more about the Festival audience and whether they would like to become involved with NNC beyond the Festival
4. We aim to increase the number of local business and residents NNC is connecting with through the Festival
5. Through our communications we will raise awareness of the role and services NNC provides and those of our Festival partners
6. Through our planning we will reduce risk and strive to deliver the safest possible event
7. We will continue our commitment to sustainability by reducing the carbon footprint of the event year on year

Liz Yeo, CEO of the Centre said, ‘Capstone Collective creating the environment, implemented the process and facilitated the workshops that allowed our stakeholders to take ownership of achieving our organisational goals for the festival’.

If you would like Capstone Collective help you achieve your Return on Event, please contact us to lock in a time for a chat.

Leave a comment