Australian Elvis festival still 'fantastic' after 30 years

STORY: "It's fantastic," said Bob Steele, who founded the festival with his wife Anne after a dinner party where the guests ended up singing Elvis songs long into the night.

"Fancy getting to 30 years with a festival, we're just so pleased with it."

The festival, 350 km northwest of Sydney, takes place each year in early January, with some 24,000 fans descending on the town normally home to about 14,000.

In addition to Elvis tribute acts, the extravaganza, timed to coincide with the birthday of 'The King', includes Elvis art and photo exhibitions, rock and roll dance lessons, and Elvis trivia nights.

First time attendee, Carl Upton, who made the trip after buying a vintage car and discovering it was a two-time festival award winner, described the occasion as "mindblowing".

"When it first started, there was only one Elvis tribute artist in Australia. Now there's thousands of them making a living out of performing Elvis' music," said Parkes Mayor Ken Keith.