December 12, 2005

Australia celebrates 2005 music festival the old-fashioned way

Meredith, Australia--One of the most revered and long running music festivals in Australia celebrates its 15th birthday the only way it knows how - at full capacity and full volume.

Barefoot running at its best

What begun as a time-filler because of a band no-show at a Meredith Festival over a decade ago has now become one of the strangest music festival traditions in Australia; at around 3pm on the Sunday, nude and underpanted participants in the Meredith Gift line up for a dash to grab a pair of undies from the dust in front of the stage. Cheating is encouraged. Dogs are allowed (but must be underpanted). The prize? A slab of beer and a t-shirt.

This year's Gift attracted corporate sponsorship as well as hundreds of (mostly) male competitors, competing first in an all-in dash, finishing with a ten member final full of the kinds of emotion and group-hugging we've come to expect in Australian sports stars.

The winners? Surely the 10,000 people who came for a pleasant three day outing at a farm just outside of Meredith...

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