Read more: 2022 Bendigo Bank Tunarama Festival program

Bring your mates: Port Lincoln mayor, Brad Flaherty, encourages everyone to come along to the 2022 Bendigo Bank Tunarama Festival. Photo: Supplied
Bring your mates: Port Lincoln mayor, Brad Flaherty, encourages everyone to come along to the 2022 Bendigo Bank Tunarama Festival. Photo: Supplied

SPECIAL PUBLICATION

Welcome to the 2022 edition of the Bendigo Bank Tunarama Festival program.

Tunarama began in 1961 when a group of local business people decided to put on a community festival based around the tuna industry.

The tuna fishing industry had turned the region from a primarily farming economy into a farming and fishing powerhouse during the 1950s and 1960s.

People came from all over the world to be part of this tuna industry, with Port Lincoln becoming the home of the largest commercial fishing fleet in the Southern Hemisphere - a mantle it still holds today.

The last weekend in January was chosen for the event, as it was the time that the fleet traditionally sailed off into the dangerous Southern Ocean, sometimes for weeks at a time. The Blessing of the Fleet and the Fleet Sail Past are part of today's festival, recognising the history of this tough industry.

Click here: Click on the image above to be taken to the 2022 Bendigo Bank Tunarama Festival program eEdition.

Click here: Click on the image above to be taken to the 2022 Bendigo Bank Tunarama Festival program eEdition.

In the early days, charity-based 'beauty' contests were very popular. Young women would work tirelessly to raise money for charity.

In a time well before the internet, this was not only an important means for charities to raise funds but for young women to learn valuable skills including public speaking. The Quest has raised more than $4m for charities and non-for-profits based on the Lower Eyre Peninsula.

For the 2022 Quest, four hardworking women raised money for four Port Lincoln-based charities including the Royal Flying Doctor Service, Matthew Flinders Homes, RSL (Port Lincoln Sub-branch) and Mentally Fit EP.

Five months of barbecues, open gardens, raffles, dances and a load of other functions means these charities will have some of the extra funds they need to continue to help our community.

Photo: Supplied

Photo: Supplied

One of these dedicated entrants will walk away as the 2022 Helping Hand Tunarama Ambassador, plus we'll know who is the highest fundraiser. The Tunarama committee wishes Kiah Wicks - Miss SCA, Karen Fiegert - Miss Baldwins Plumbing & Electrical, Rachel Vella - Miss Matthew Finders Homes and Marlee Anderson - Miss Charmaine Day Skin Care all the best.

In 1980 the Tuna Toss was introduced. This paid homage to the legions of young men who lined up on the wharf when the tuna boats came in to toss tuna from the boat up onto the dock for transport to the processing plant.

This event put Tunarama on the world stage. Over the years it has had TV coverage from the US, UK, Europe and especially Japan with a US TV crew trying to get here for 2022. As usual, male and female entrants will attempt to toss a 10kg rubber tuna as far as humanly possible - longest throw wins.

"Times have changed but this event remains to pay tribute to an era now passed," Tunarama festival coordinator, Jane Intini said.

Photo: Supplied

Photo: Supplied

The Bendigo Bank Tunarama Festival has grown from a local event based around tuna to being the largest regional event in South Australia. According to State Government's figures, in 2020 the event injected more than $3m into the local economy and provided 600-800 jobs in the city.

"Since the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, South Australia has truly become a haven for the population of Australia to visit and get some relief from the burdens of dealing with the harsh realities of the pandemic," Port Lincoln mayor, Brad Flaherty said.

"The Port Lincoln Tunarama is the best family-focused festival in Australia, and it continues to cater not only to locals, but to all Australians. The Tunarama Festival adds to what is already a great place to come and visit. I encourage anyone who hasn't experienced Tunarama to come and give it a try - and bring all of your mates."

In 2022, the Bendigo Bank Tuna Toss (and Salmon and Prawn Tosses), foreshore rides, parkrun, yoga by the sea, prawn recipe competition, tuna sushi competition and much more make a welcome return.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank my hard-working committee and our coordinator, Jane Intini, for their tireless work in getting this festival up and running," Tunarama Festival president, Sharon Humenick said.

Photo: Supplied

Photo: Supplied

"The 2022 Tunarama Festival will be very different to past festivals, not because the committee wants it that way, but due to the very strict COVID-19 restrictions put in place by Health SA to keep us all safe. We are very proud to continue to offer this as a mostly free entry festival in partnership with Bendigo Bank our naming rights sponsor and our many valued sponsors. Tunarama provides an excellent opportunity to highlight what Port Lincoln and its surrounding areas have to offer."

"Please also take the time to discover our vibrant marina, where the Blessing of the Fleet will take place on Sunday night. On behalf of the 2022 Tunarama Committee I would like to welcome everyone to our iconic festival and invite you all to take part in any way you can, whether it be down on the foreshore for the show rides or at the Questory on Friday night in the Nautilus Theatre, or the Best of Eyre Dinner at Hotel Boston on Saturday evening, or at the Marina Hotel for the Blessing of the Fleet Dinner on Sunday night."

The 2022 Tunarama Festival is being managed under strict Health SA COVID-Safe guidelines. When attending any event, you will be required to abide by all COVID-19 regulations that are in force at the date/time of the event.