Byron Bay’s local Indigenous dance group and representative of Bundjalung land, the Arakwal dancers welcome Bluesfest patrons to country at the Opening Ceremony every year. The Arakwal Aboriginal Corporation does fantastic work to educate locals and visitors alike, and keep local stories alive through educational programs and various artistic activities.
ArakwalBumberlinpeople, have lived in the coastal landscape around the Byron Bay area and are the recognised custodians of the Byron Bay district. Arakwal Country extends from Seven Mile Beach south of Broken Head to the Brunswick River up north, out to the escarpment west of Byron Bay, and east out into the Tasman Sea.
The Bundjalung of Byron Bay Aboriginal Corporation (Arakwal) was established in 1996. Its members are our people. Strengthening our Aboriginal identity and culture, and ensuring our efforts accord with our cultural values, customs and practices are a major focus of the organisation. The corporation works in partnership with government, community groups, and business enterprises to protect and help manage the land and waters of our traditional Country.
The Arakwal dance group have performed many Openings and Welcome to country ceremonies. They have reclaimed several new language songs which were performed at the 2015Danceritesevent at the Sydney Opera House.