Festival celebrates doting dads

Eltham dad Justin Cheek with his daughters Cedar and Indigo. Justins film Inaflash will debut at the Fatherood Festivals Big Short Film Night on Saturday.

Eltham father Justin Cheek said one of the most poignant moments of his short film Inaflash was where the main character looks down on his angelic baby daughter in her cot.

His own daughter Cedar now six starred in the film, so its fitting that its North Coast debut will be at the Fatherhood Festivals Big Short Film Night this Saturday, September 2.

The film is about loss, said Justin, who was profoundly affected by the death of his own father at age 13. About the idea that people are a product of what theyve lost in their lives.

Now in its third year, the Fatherhood Festival celebrates the importance of men in their childrens lives and runs this Fathers Day weekend at the Bangalow Showgrounds and A&I Hall. The Big Short Film Night kicks off at 8pm on Saturday and tickets cost $12.

Other Saturday highlights include the 3pm panel discussion on The Future of Families with relationship writer and speaker Bettina Arndt, Terry Melvin of Mensline Australia, publisher Kali Wendorf of ByronChild and indigenous social worker Greg Telford.

At 6pm theres the official art and photography exhibition opening with Thanks Dad photo competition awards at 6.30pm.

Sunday is a huge family fun day with mostly free activities at the Bangalow Showgrounds from 8am. You can join in Rainforest Rescues tree planting, the Uncle Projects Big Brekkie and Dads Bootcamp or enjoy the fire truck and motorcycle displays, hot air balloon rides, clowns, juggling, African drumming workshops and much more.

The festival wraps up on Sunday with a concert featuring Australian singer/songwriter Pete Murray at 4.30pm and tickets cost $30. For more information go to www.fatherhoodfestival.com.

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