Sequin jumpsuits and Vegas showgirls outnumbered shirts and ties at Sydney’s Central station on Thursday as hundreds of Elvis fans boarded a train bound for a festival dedicated to The King.
Peak hour travellers were serenaded by tribute acts performing on a stage erected on the platform, while poodle skirts twirled at one of the city’s busiest commuter hubs as fans danced away the wait for the 9.20am “Elvis Express” to Parkes in the Australian countryside.
The annual Parkes Elvis festival, which last year attracted more than 20,000 people, features five days of tribute concerts, memorabilia exhibits and even a Priscilla Presley look-a-like competition.
Held in the small rural town of Parkes, about 350 kilometres (217 miles) west of Sydney, the festival began 25 years ago as a modest Elvis-themed birthday party and has since ballooned into a tourism boon for the area, with more than 120 events scheduled over the five days.
“I don’t think that any Elvis fan can really tell you what it is about Elvis,” said impersonator Aaron Mansfield.
“It’s magic, it’s got this sort of... I don’t know man, you just can’t describe it.”
The Elvis Parkes Festival runs from January 11 to 15.