Yulefest - Christmas In July
Enjoy your Yulefest celebrations where it all started.
Our Yulefest celebration brings together people from all over the country to enjoy a Christmas feast during the cold winter months.
A six course sumptuous dinner plus after dinner port. A cabaret show, a visit from Santa, caroling around open fireplaces, and an atmosphere of Christmas that December really can’t match. Perhaps even a hint of snow on a cold winters night. Just think, a Christmas celebration without the stress.
Yulefest dates include all Saturdays in July
History of Yulefest
It all began with the Irish...
A small group had come to The Blue Mountains in their search for the crisp, clear winter climate that they were accustomed to back in Ireland. The year was 1980.
As they relaxed at the Mountain Heritage, warming in front of the roaring log fires, they glanced out through the frosted window panes and saw snowflakes dancing on the wind. Their thoughts turned to home. "Celebrating Christmas in Australia during the heat of summer just doesn't feel quite the same", one of the group explained to Garry Crockett, their host and the owner of Mountain Heritage. It was a defining moment on that cold and crisp wintry night.
As he quietly listened to his guests, an idea crystalised in his mind. Garry recalled his childhood and the stories his own Irish father Bill, used to tell him, of a white Christmas.
He thought about the traditional Christmas cards that so many Australians send and receive, depicting the images of a Northern Hemisphere Christmas. There were sleigh rides, and frosted windows, and Christmas feasts of turkey and hams and mince pies with steaming plum pudding and choiristers joining together singing the joys of the festive season. And of course, there was always a snowman. With these images in his mind, Garry offered to re-create for his Irish guests a similar festive Christmas atmosphere at Mountain Heritage... they were excited and very enthusiastic about the idea.
Preparations for the great feast were in full swing, with the hanging of decorations throughout the hotel, even a Christmas tree found and trimmed. Over the weeks of planning, many curious guests enquired as to all the activity... they thought it was some kind of Irish joke - you just don't have Christmas in the middle of the year!
Garry explained the significance of the occasion, that a traditional Christmas feast with all the trimmings, was soon to happen for a group of homesick Irish people. Word began to spread far and wide of this most unusual "out-of-season" festive event at Mountain Heritage and enquiries from other interested parties, who also wanted to enjoy such a wonderful original occasion, began flowing in.
Thus it came to pass, "Christmas in July" was born on a cold wintry night at the Mountain Heritage!
Today the tradition has become known as "Yulefest" and lives on throughout the Blue Mountains in the winter months of June, July and August. Although many other regions have tried to imitate none have suceeded like the Blue Mountains, the only region that can truly offer the opportunity for everyone to experience the excitement of a traditional northern hemisphere Christmas Celebration at The Mountain Heritage - the home of Yulefest.