City set for Australia Day celebration

The Wagga Wagga Botanic Gardens will be the focal point of the city’s 2021 Australia Day community celebrations, with a free barbecue breakfast and a morning of live entertainment on Tuesday 26 January.

The Australia Day 2021 committee supported by Council has finalised its planning for the city’s Australia Day events, ensuring they will all comply with NSW Government COVID-19 restrictions.

In a first for Wagga Wagga, the city’s Australia Day 2021 Awards Ceremony on the evening of Monday 25 January, will be livestreamed and emceed by Stina Constantine.

Mayor of the City of Wagga Wagga Councillor Greg Conkey OAM said due to COVID restrictions the general public will not be able to attend the ceremony at the Civic Theatre.

“We will have the nominees for the four award categories, along with their families at the Civic Theatre,” Cr Conkey said.

“We are encouraging the broader community to show their support by joining the livestream to see the announcement of our Citizen of the Year, Young Citizen of the Year, Environmental Citizen of the Year, and our Walk of Honour inductee.”

The livestream will be available on Council’s website at www.wagga.nsw.gov.au/australiaday

Residents will have the chance to share in the celebrations in person on Australia Day itself with a morning program at the Wagga Wagga Botanic Gardens, followed by free entry at the Oasis Regional Aquatic Centre from 12noon to 6pm.

From 7am the Australia Day 2021 committee, supported by Council, will be hosting a free barbecue breakfast for the community, as well as the Australia Day 2021 Citizenship Ceremony and live entertainment for the whole family at the gardens.

Director Community Janice Summerhayes said a stage will be set up on the grassy area opposite the main carpark – near the café – with two designated areas set aside for the community.

“It is wonderful an Australia Day event can be held this year to give everyone a chance to celebrate and take part in a fun community event,” Ms Summerhayes said.

“Due to COVID restrictions, the overall number who can attend is limited to 3000.

We will have two entry points only and people will need to sign in via QR Codes and will then be allocated to one of the designated areas, where they can set up a picnic spot.

“We won’t be providing seating, so we encourage residents to bring along a picnic rug and chairs so they can relax and enjoy the event.

“People can leave their designated area to visit the Zoo & Aviary or take a ride on the Miniature Railway, or use the amenities, but we ask that they otherwise stay seated within their designated area.”

There will be COVID Marshals on hand along with council staff and Australia Day 2021 committee members to ensure this event is delivered safely and within the NSW Public Health requirements.

Members of the Kooringal Rotary will be providing a barbecue breakfast, along with the Wagga Wagga Multicultural Council who will be providing both halal and vegetarian barbecue options, from 7am to 9am, with live entertainment from local musicians.

The Australia Day 2021 Citizenship Ceremony will commence at 9am and is expected to be one of the largest held on an Australia Day in the city.

The National Anthem will be performed by the two finalists in Council’s Anthem Competition, Max Schneider and Jazmin Castle, accompanied by the Australian Army Band Kapooka.

The musical entertainment and activities will continue until midday

For more details about Wagga Wagga’s Australia Day 2021 activities, go to wagga.nsw.gov.au/australiaday

Monday 25 January

7pm – 9pm

Australia Day Awards Ceremony

Livestreamed from Wagga Civic Theatre

www.wagga.nsw.gov.au/australiaday

Tuesday 26 January

7am – 9am

Free BBQ breakfast

2 x BBQs in each designated area

Botanic Gardens

7am – 7.45am

Harry & Tom

Main stage

Botanic Gardens

8am – 8.45am

Dane Kennedy

Main stage

Botanic Gardens

9am – 9.45am

Australia Day Citizenship Ceremony

Main stage

Botanic Gardens

10am – 10.30am

Khairi Darweesh

Main stage

Botanic Gardens

10.45am – 11.30am

Dane Kennedy and the Overflow

Main stage

Botanic Gardens

8am – 10am

Train rides

Willans Hill Miniature Railway

Botanic Gardens

9am – 4pm

Zoo visits

Wagga Zoo & Aviary

Botanic Gardens

12pm – 6pm

Free Entry to Oasis

Entry numbers restricted in line with current COVID rules and NSW Public Health regulations in place at the Oasis

Oasis Regional Aquatic Centre

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