FOR the second year in a row, Nambucca Valley Council and the Unkya Reserve Committee will be hosting their annual Australia Day Celebration on January 26 from 8.30am to 2.00pm in the Unkya Reserve at Eungai Creek.
Many of the usual activities will return to the event, but this year President of the Unkya Reserve Committee, Lisa Hall, hopes to make the festivities bigger and better than ever.
"We were thrilled last years event went so well; there were over 1500 coming through on the day," she said.
"This year, we have four bands playing, more displays by local service groups, food stalls, coffee, smoothies, free face-painting, crafts, games for children and so much more.
"All our market stalls are filled with great locally made products, we have ensured they are all quality items, there won't be junk stalls.
"We also have a much larger involvement by the local Aboriginal community this year; there will be Aboriginal artists, displays, stories, Uncle Martin Ballangarry will conduct a smoking ceremony and we hope to have some language teachers teaching Gumbaynggirr."
Nambucca Valley Australia Day Ambassador Warwick Nowland and newly re-elected Nambucca Valley Mayor Rhonda Hoban will be around to chat with people, and Eungai/Stuart's Point CWA are holding a lamington competition.
Anybody interested in entering can take two lamingtons to the CWA ladies before 10am for the chance to win a prize.
Funding for the event has partly come through a grant from the National Australia Day Council, which Lisa says has been a big help in creating an occasion that will appeal to all ages.
"The Australia Day Celebration will be a fun day out for everyone, young, old, if you are a couple or single, and a great day to celebrate what it means to be Australian," she said.
"The community has been through a lot, and we really want to give people a great and enjoyable time."
Unfortunately, COVID-19 is still very much on everyone's mind.
Everyone who comes to the Australia Day Celebration will need to adhere to all current government-enforced restrictions, whatever they are at the time.
"Everyone is welcome, both Vaxed and Unvaxxed; masks are not mandatory outside but feel free to wear one if it makes you feel more comfortable," Lisa said.
"We will have a QR code check-in, hand sanitiser and extra cleaning scheduled throughout the day, the reserve is quite large so it has plenty of room for social distancing.
"However, we please ask anyone who is feeling unwell or has tested positive for COVID recently to please stay home and come back next year.
"If restrictions change, we will let people know via Nambucca Valley Councils website and social media pages."
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