Stories Under the Stars Program and FAQs

Spend an evening by the Parramatta River exploring themes such as country, reconciliation, and the significance of the river for First Nations people. 

This free event seeks to celebrate Indigenous history, language, art, and culture through a program of artisan markets, cultural activities, and educational workshops. 

The event will feature:

  • Markets with First Nations stalls and local Indigenous businesses.
  • Pop-up open air cinema featuring First Nations documentary film “Araatika! Rise up” presented by Dean Widders (NRL First Nations & footy legend).
  • 500 native plant give aways.
  • Parramatta Eels ‘meet & greet’ including Mahalia Murphy of NRLW and Steve Ella.
  • Live music and entertainment featuring First Nations artists. 
  • Interactive cultural activities including a glow-in-the-dark laneway featuring Indigenous artwork, Indigenous face-painting, basket weaving, dance workshops, yarning circles, storytelling, and cooking demos.
  • Food trucks
  • Powerhouse stall and giveaway.

Program of Activities

Indigenous facepainting for kids by Jannawi Dance Clan  3pm – 6pm
Meet & greet Parramatta Eels players 3pm – 5pm
Nursery Songs in Dharug with Merrilee McNaught 3pm – 4pm
First Nations performer Eric Avery 3pm – 3.30pm
Cooking demo & bushtucker talk with Bush to Bowl  3.30pm – 4pm
Jannawi Dance Workshops for kids 4pm – 5.40pm
Basket weaving workshops for kids by Rhiannon Redpath 4pm – 4.50m
First Nations performer Kootsie Don 4pm – 4.30pm
Poetry readings by 3 Poets presented by Westwords 4pm – 5pm
“How humans lived” talk with Q&A by Uncle Chris Tobin  4.15pm – 5pm
First Nations performer Majeda Beatty    5pm – 5.30pm
Meet & greet footy legend Dean Widders 5pm – 5.45pm
Dean Widders presentation and film talk 5.50pm – 6pm
Glow-in-the-dark laneway with the artists   
Leanne Redpath, Tina Barahanos & Alexandra Byrne  6pm – 6.30pm
Screening of “Araatika! Rise Up!” from SBS Film Reconciliation Club 6pm – 7.30pm


Event Details

Venue: Parramatta River foreshore, Parramatta CBD, NSW 2150
(between Wilde Avenue and Elizabeth Street Footbridge)
Event start: Saturday 1 June, 2024 3pm (Outdoor Cinema Starts 6pm)
Event finish: Saturday 1 June, 2024 7.30pm

Is the event free?
Yes, it is free to attend the event.

Will there be food onsite?

Yes, there will be a number of food vendors attending the event, as well as first nation market stalls selling food, and numerous local restaurants trading throughout Parramatta CBD including Church Street.

What happens if it is raining or bad weather?

The event will proceed if it is light rain, bring some wet weather gear! If we need to cancel due to dangerous weather conditions or heavy rainfall, we will update the website.

Will there be first aid?

Yes. There will be first aid on site.

Can I bring alcohol to the event?

No. The public domain is an alcohol-free zone, however there are licenced bars in the CBD, along Church Street and Phillip Street.

Do you have wristbands or ID for kids?

Yes. Wristbands can be found at the Information Booth. 

Will there be public toilets nearby?

Public toilets are located by Parramatta Wharf (Charles Street), in Riverside Theatres (Church Street/Market Street), in Centenary Square, and in the Parramatta Station.

Can I bring my dog?

Yes, dogs are permitted on a leash at the river foreshore within the public domain. Please be mindful of surroundings, as there will be vendors and stallholders with food as well as children playing freely, during the event.

Parking and Transport

Where can I park?

Limited parking will be available on neighbouring streets and will be subject to signposted regulations. 
Multi-story parking is subject to availability, the closest being:

  • Wentworth Street Car Park
  • Westfield
  • Justice Precinct Car Park
  • Eat Street Car Park
What is the best way to get to the event?

We recommend travelling to and from the event via public transport.