It's on! Port Stephens

Latest Events

Click here to view the latest It's On! events and activities taking place in Port Stephens.

What is 'It's on!'?

It’s on! Port Stephens is our events and activation program aimed at bringing life and vibrancy to our public spaces.

The program focuses on delivering small, regular, community led, low cost activities that are and connected to the local identity of our town centres.

How did it start?

'It's on!' began following the introduction of the Nelson Bay Smart Parking scheme where income from parking fees was committed to supporting place activation and events in Nelson Bay. To ensure we delivered programs that met the expectations of business and community, consultation was carried out during the Nelson Bay Smart Parking Pop Up to find out what type of events and activations our community would like to see in their town centre. Data from the Liveability Index further informed us of what activities our community would like to see in the program.

It’s On! Nelson Bay trial program went from July 2021 until June 2022.

Where are we now?

The success of the program so far has resulted in securing additional funding from external funding sources and enabling us to deliver more activation programs to the broader LGA including Raymond Terrace, Lemon Tree Passage and Medowie in 2023, encouraging business growth, increasing community participation and ownership of place activation, seed new ideas and enhance liveability and wellbeing across our LGA.

Activities so far have been funded by:

  • NSW Government’s Reconnecting Regional NSW event fund 2022
  • Multicultural NSW 2023
  • NSW Festivals of Place – Summer Night Fund 2021 & 2022

The It’s on! brand is continuing to grow and it's expected that with community and business participation and further success in securing external funding, Council will be able to continue to deliver activations across our town centres and further support business growth, increase community participation and ownership of place activation, seed new ideas and enhance liveability and wellbeing across our LGA .

It’s On! Nelson Bay has been in place since July 2021 and was the first place activation program that was trialed in Port Stephens. It has included various activations such as markets, live music, kids activities, public art and street performances. This program is possible thanks to the Nelson Bay Smart Parking scheme where income from parking fees was committed to supporting place activation and events in Nelson Bay.


Taste Like Summer- A food truck series we trialled in Fern Bay, Raymond Terrace, Karuah & Lemon Tree Passage with a line up of food trucks, live music, face painting and kids games

Snak n wrap- A youth event that is run each year around the LGA by Up & Up involving a free BBQ, Street art workshops, open mic and DJ

Kidszones- A series we trialled during the school holidays with different kids activities, we have had some of the kids favourite superheros out and about, giant games, magicians, live reptile shows and so much more


Youth Week Outdoor Cinemas- We hosted our first outdoor cinema series in Autumn in Nelson Bay, Lemon Tree Passage, Raymond Terrace and Medowie with a series of different movies, free popcorn and entertainment for the kids


Its On! Lights On!- Lighting up the Streets of Raymond Terrace & Nelson Bay after dark with some permanent festoon and fairy lights, we invited the community to celebrate the winter nights with some flame heaters, light up performers, styled seating and entertainment


Friday Flavours- Celebrating local art and flavours in Nelson Bay & Raymond Terrace with food trucks, a bar, live street performers, entertainment and live art displays.

It's on! This season celebrates our holiday period over Christmas and New Year. Last year we distributed collateral such as banners, footpath stickers, bin stickers and flyers throughout town centres including Raymond Terrace and Nelson Bay. A window dressing competition was also held to encourage business participation and to further support shop local campaign.

Get in touch if you:

  • have a product range you’d like to demonstrate or share as part of wellness or health.
  • are part of a fitness group that wants to hold their activity outdoors.
  • are part of a group that has something interesting to share.
  • know a local musician who would like to perform.
  • have a specific artistic talent that you’d like to showcase.

Register your interest with and we will be in touch.

Please note, with all activities Public Liability cover is required and some activities do require additional approvals.

If you're a business in a location we're holding our activations, this is your chance to get inspired and benefit! The purpose of our activation program is to bring vibrancy to public spaces to attract more people into town and shop locally. So think about how you can get them to your business.

Suggestions for businesses to leverage off activities happening in town

  • Promote a special It’s on! take-away meal for an activity – pre-ordered takeaway lunch for music in the park or coffee and/or breakfast special after boot camp
  • Promote special offers on your social channels
  • Attend an activity and review it on your social channels
  • Take a photo of a customer with their lunch from your café in their yoga gear / listening to music / participating – and post on your social channels,
  • Share the link to the It’s on! program on your social channels
  • Make sure your staff are informed and know what’s going on so they can discuss it with customers

Think about the most exciting and vibrant streets you have visited and explore what can be done on your footpath or together as a group of shops.

Have you participated in the It’s on! activities? We're trialing these unique experiences to support local businesses and attract people to the town centre.

As this is a trial, your feedback is important to help shape the future of activities.

Take our participant survey

Help us plan for your future place