Sports, Gardens & Recreation Events

Council hosts a range of events that showcase our parks, gardens, sport, recreation and lifestyle including Tropicana (tropical gardening and sustainability expo), Spring Garden Spectacular, Arts in the Park and the Sports and Health Expo.

Arts in the Park

Arts in the Park involves free arts workshops at the Rockhampton Botanic Gardens. Sessions are held weekly on Saturdays between 1pm and 3pm and over the school holidays.

National Tree Day

In conjunction with Planet Ark, Council celebrates National Tree Day each year through a community planting event and school planting activities.

Sports and Health Expo

The annual sports and health expo aims to showcase sport, recreation and health in our Region.

Spring Garden Spectacular

The annual Spring Garden Spectacular Gardening Competition celebrates our local residents, communities, schools and businesses and their gardens.




Arts in the Park

Arts in the Park involves free arts workshops at the Rockhampton Botanic Gardens. Sessions are held weekly on Saturdays between 1pm and 3pm and over the school holidays. 

Arts in the Park aims to:

  • Inspire the creativity and imagination of participants
  • Encourage development of fine and gross motor skills through tactile activities
  • Foster and develop artistic talent
  • Support local and emerging artists throughout the Region
  • Increase exposure to media/medium used in a variety of art forms
  • Encourage visitation to the Rockhampton Botanic Gardens
  • Value-add to experiences
  • Provide a workshop for all ages

Arts in the Park is held at the Gardens Tearooms (kiosk) every Saturday from 1pm to 3pm and on school holidays from 10am to 12pm on weekdays. For more information please call Council on 4932 9000 or email

Limited places are available and bookings through Rockhampton Tickets are preferred.


National Tree Day

Planet Ark and Council partner up each year to celebrate National Tree Day. Council hosts a school tree planting event and a community tree planting event.

In 2017 we will celebrate the schools tree planting day on Friday 28 July 2017 and schools that are interested in participating should contact Council on 4932 9000 or email

The community planting day will be held on Sunday 30 July 2017 at the following locations:

  • Frenchman’s Creek / Frenchville Road from 11am to 1pm
  • Blackall Street along the Yeppen from 11am to 1pm
  • Platen Street, Gracemere from 11am to 1pm
  • Number 7 Dam, Mount Morgan from 11am to 1pm

For more information visit Planet Ark's Website.


Sports and Health Expo

The annual Sports and Health Expo is a community event aimed to encourage the Rockhampton Regional community to get involved in physical activity, healthy eating and healthy lifestyles. It is an holistic initiative to help boost participation in sport, recreation and health within the Region. The Expo will target all ages, particularly children and promote involvement in sports and recreations from the grass roots level through to Masters.


Spring Garden Spectacular

The Spring Garden Spectacular competition is a long-standing event in the Rockhampton Region, which was originally started by a small group of garden lovers to showcase their passion.

Since 2008, avid gardeners have had an opportunity to showcase their beautiful gardens, along with their dedication and hard work.

Stretching across the Rockhampton Region, the Spring Garden Spectacular takes in natural environments from the bush to suburban and apartment living.

Important Dates

Competition opens 30 June 2017
Competition closes  15 September 2017 
Judging  27-29 September 2017 
Presentation  7 October 2017 
Bus Tour 8 October 2017 

* Presentations will be held in conjunction with Council's Tropicana.


Businesses and organisations interested in sponsoring the Spring Garden Spectacular can download a Sponsorship Prospectus(PDF, 485KB) or contact Council on 4932 9000.


There are 10 categories options to choose from and entrants can choose any or all categories that apply to their garden:

Best Use of Native Plants

Entries must consist of a significant proportion of Australian native plants presented in a layout that both enhances and compliments other plant varieties in the surrounding garden. The types of native plants used should possess ecological qualities such as attracting birds and butterflies.

Best Food Garden

Entries may be vegetable gardens, fruit gardens, culinary herb gardens, bush tucker gardens or gardens that are a combination of all of these. Gardens entered must contain (consumable) produce, and may be the traditional bed type of garden, a container garden, a patio garden or a hydroponic garden.

Best Young Gardener/s

Entries are open to all young gardening enthusiasts up to the age of 16, either as individuals or as groups, who have a home gardening or school gardening project they are especially proud of. Entries in this category must predominately be the result of the work of the young gardener/s themselves.

Best Corporate Garden

Entry in this category is open to businesses, government and other corporate entities, training and tertiary education institutions, school grounds and community support organisations. Gardens entered in this category will have been created to beautify and compliment the facade and/or surrounds/grounds of the particular premises concerned.

Best Home Garden on Town Water

This category is open to home gardens that are connected to a reticulated town water supply, irrespective of allotment size. Gardens entered in this category should consist of an appealing blend of colour and texture provided by a variety of plants including shrubs, trees, climbers, groundcovers, annuals, ornamentals and lawn areas.

Best Home Garden not on Town Water

Irrespective of their allotment size, home gardens that are not connected to a reticulated town water supply may be entered in this category. These gardens should consist of an appealing blend of colour and texture provided by a variety of plants including shrubs, trees, climbers, groundcovers, annuals, ornamentals and lawn areas.

Best Lifestyle Garden Feature

This category takes account of special or feature areas of your garden that embrace a creative, relaxed outdoor lifestyle associated with a living or leisure area. The features may include bush and orchid houses, swimming pool surrounds, man caves/sheds, outdoor entertaining areas or imaginative children’s play areas.

Best Flower Garden

Entries in this category are invited for either planted Gardens, garden beds or pot gardens that are focused on providing an abundance of eye-catching colour and fragrance stemming from vibrant displays of spring annuals and/or seasonal flowering shrubs.

Best View from the Street

Entries in this category will be focused on “first impressions”; i.e. how “good” do your premises look from the street point of view? Entries are welcome from all areas of the community - private residences, businesses, government and other corporate entities, training and tertiary education institutions, schools and community support organizations.

Best Senior’s Garden

This category is open to residents of a retirement or over 50’s complex that have established and personally maintain their own small private garden at the villa or unit in which they reside. This includes pot gardens. Gardens entered in this category should complement the surrounds of the villa or unit concerned.

Entry Forms

All entrants must complete an entry form, which is available online - click here

Once you have nominated for the 2017 Spring Garden Spectacular download and display our 2017 Garden Entrant Flyer(PDF, 2MB).


Council engages two (2) judges that are responsible for viewing all of the entries and judging each against the relevant category. Judges score entrants against a range of criteria which may include:

  • Creativity
  • Layout
  • Plant selection
  • Ecological quality (attracts native fauna and complements the ecosystem)
  • Presentation
  • Sustainability
  • Visual appeal
  • Learning value
  • Use of colour
  • First impression
  • Quality
  • Health



Rockhampton Regional Council is proud to host the region's second Tropicana event, the tropical gardening and sustainability expo.

Tropicana is a place where people come to learn about sustainable gardening, creating an environmentally sustainable lifestyle and find out what services and products are available in the region to meet their 'green needs'. In 2017 our goals are to:

  • Improve understanding and skills in gardening in tropical areas
  • Increase awareness of sustainable gardening opportunities
  • Provide all tropical and sustainable gardening related industries the opportunity to promote their business/activity
  • Provide the community with access to a range of knowledgeable service providers and industry experts
  • Showcase innovative and environmentally friendly products and services
  • Educate the community through a variety of presentations, workshops and hands-on activities

In its second year, Tropicana will be held at the Rockhampton Botanic Gardens, Saturday 7 October from 9.00am to 1.30pm.

As a means to bring together common interests, Rockhampton Regional Council’s Spring Garden Spectacular competition winners will be announced at this year’s event.


Businesses and organisations interested in sponsoring Tropicana can download a Sponsorship Prospectus(PDF, 2MB) or contact Council on 4932 9000.

Site Holders

We are accepting applications from a range of site holders for Tropicana; site holders must meet the following criteria:

  • The core purpose of the site holder’s business (other than food vendors) must be the supply of products or services that are related to tropical and sustainable gardening or gardens
  • Food vendors must hold any applicable Food Business Licences
  • Any packaging, including food and drink, must be environmentally friendly, biodegradable or recyclable
  • Due to underground irrigation no tent pegs or ground penetrating devices can be used, please use alternative methods of affixing items or weights
  • Animals and balloons are not permitted at this event
  • Power will not be supplied
  • Site holders will need all of their own equipment including tables, chairs, marquees
  • No site fees will be charged
  • Site holders must hold $20 million public liability insurance

Important dates for site holders are:

Applications open 30 June 2017
Applications close 15 September 2017
Site Maps distributed 27-29 September 2017

Site holder applications forms must be competed for all site holders. Forms are available online by clicking on this link.


A full program of events will be provided in due course and will include a range of presentations, workshops and hands on activities.