A slew of venues across Australia are chucking ‘Nup To The Cup’ festivities tomorrow in protest of the Melbourne Cup, providing solace to punters who just want to dress up and get day drunk without supporting the racing industry.
For the second year in a row, Sydney’s Bodhi restaurant is chucking a Nup The Cup lunch, offering diners the chance to get fancy on the day without implicitly supporting animal cruelty.
“For the last 17 years we have been approached by both corporate and private clients to hold office lunches and private events for Melbourne Cup,” restaurateur Heaven Leigh told PEDESTRIAN.TV.
“It never felt right to profit from an event that did not align with our business ethos of ‘do no harm.'”
Instead, the sold-out event will offer luxe vegan yum cha, gift stalls, special speakers, and a raffle offering swish skincare gear. There’s also a prize on offer for the best-dressed attendee, because you don’t really need to watch a race to look fancy.
The event is possible because Australians are “asking themselves if the fun and frivolity of the day is really worth the consequences of so much suffering and waste,” Leigh said.
$15 from each ticket will go to Horse Rescue Australia, and Leigh expects donations from Bodhi will surpass last year’s total of over $4000.
Looking for something a little less swish? Sidle over to The Newtown Hotel, which is throwing its F**k The Cup “anti-party”. Expect horse-centric cinema on the screens and human-centric beer at the bar, but don’t expect a traditional cup experience. As the invite spells out: “Don’t you dare wear a fascinator.” Donations will also head along to Horse Rescue Australia.
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Looking for a different approach to the typical Melbourne Cup celebrations, we’re throwing one hell of an anti-party – F the Cup! Expect bands, DJs, food & drinks specials and karma keg. We'll also be showing Black Beauty & Spirit the Stallion of the Cimarro in the cinema. Get amongst it! . . . #newtownhotel #newtown #innerwest #sydneypubs #fthecup
Melbournites will also be allowed to escape the furore at Evie’s Disco Diner with their Nup To The Cup Drag Brunch, featuring performers Prozac and Simple. Expect proceeds from that one to head along to Save A Horse Australia.
If you’d like to be the one dressing up for the occasion, consider hiking to Fashuns on the Field at Newmarket Reserve, directly opposite Flemington Racecourse. The madness will raise funds to benefit Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses, and footage of last year’s festivities should give you a decent idea of what to expect:
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Come on down to Fashuns on the Field Nov 5th Outside Flemington at Newmarket reserve. Music kicks off at 10.. Register NOW to race from 12 and join an amazing group of beings at a cruelty free picnic whilst saying #NupTheCup. #NupToTheCup #fashunsonthefield #kindredsurprize #kindredwithyou #crueltyfree #protest #picnic
Over in Adelaide, The FARK Cup – that is, the Fun Alternative Racing Karnival – promises to pit consenting adults against each other in cruelty-free races at Prospect Oval. First up is the Wobbly Ladies event, which asks competitors to run “barefoot, carrying shoes and handbag whilst wearing an unfixed hat” as they charge towards a bottle of bubbly. Then there’s the T-Rex race, which involves inflatable costumes and no small amount of coordination. Collection tins will be on deck with proceeds going to the Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses.
Alternatively, you could stay at home and fling some coin towards the charity of your choice. That’s the fun thing about Melbourne Cup Day – there are countless ways not to support the racing industry.