Social Program


Sunday 22 October 2023
Venue: Esplanade Hotel Fremantle – Poolside
Time: 18:00 – 20:00
Inclusions: Stand-up BBQ dinner and drinks
Additional Ticket: $80.00
Dress code: Smart casual


Tuesday 24 October 2023
Venue: Esplanade Hotel Fremantle
Time: 17:30 – 19:30
Inclusions: Bar tab with drinks
Additional Ticket: $40.00
Dress code: Smart casual


Thursday 26 October 2023
Venue: Bathers Beach House
Time: 19:00 – 22:30
Inclusions: Stand-up dinner with local cuisine and bar tab
Ticket: $120.00
The Conference Function is not included in your registration category 
Dress code: Smart casual

To purchase additional tickets please contact


Friday 27 October 2023
Venue: Little Creatures Brewery, Fremantle
Time: 15:30 – 18:00
Inclusions: Bar tab with drinks
Additional Ticket: $40.00
Dress code: Smart casual

Fremantle Blessing of the Fleet – Sunday 22 October

The 75th Fremantle Blessing of the Fleet occurs on the afternoon of Sunday 22 October (2-5pm), the day of the Conference Welcome Reception (6pm), so hopefully you can plan to be around for this.

It all occurs within walking distance of the conference hotel.

The program for the Sunday blessing consists of:

2pm – Procession commences at St Patrick’s Basilica, Fremanlte and moves to Molfetta Quay, Fishing Boat Harbour

3.30pm – Fishing fleet is blessed as the boats go around the Fishing Boat Harbour

4.30pm – Fireworks display at Fremantle Esplanade (outside Conference Hotel)

5pm – Procession returns to the Basilica

This festival started in Fremantle in 1948 by some Italian fishers that migrated from Molfetta and later combined with fishers that had migrated from Capo d’Orlando in Sicily.  The key parts of the procession consist of the statues of the Madonna dei Martiri (Madonna of the Martyrs originating from Molfetta with a tradition dating 700 years) and the Madonna from Capo d’Orlando.

The fishers from Italian cities of Molfetta and Capo d’Orlando have a long association with Fremantle and both Italian cities have become sister cities with Fremantle.

If you like to get a close look at a western rock lobster boat, we are happy to organise a ride for a limited number of conference attendees on a first-come basis (please email Nick Caputi at with subject line of Blessing of Fleet ride) on one of the rock lobster boats during the blessing in the Fremantle Boat Harbour.  Otherwise please take the opportunity to enjoy the festival.

If you are arriving in Fremantle on the Sunday afternoon, please be aware that there may be some road closures for short periods when the procession is moving through Fremantle.