Celebrating all things Australian

TALENT quest, markets, rides and an outdoor cinema - Hastings residents can look forward to all this and more with a feast of activities planned to celebrate Australia Day.

Official proceedings begin in Laurieton at Bruce Porter Reserve (site of Riverwalk Markets) from 7am. Activites run from 8am at Westport Park Port Macquarie and 8.30am at Bain Park in Wauchope.

Join in the fun and excitement throughout the day all across the region as a host of bands, performers and activities entertain the crowds. Handicraft and market stalls will also feature at Port Macquarie festivities.

At the official Port Macquarie-Hastings Council Australia Day functions Australia Day ambassador actor Paula Duncan will speak and meet locals. Wauchope celebrations in Bain Park will be boosted with an additional ambassador, former local and Icehouse front man Iva Davies. Another feature of the Wauchope festivities will be the Pinnacle of Terror ride, featuring six different activities including a climbing wall, high wire walk and trapeze sure to test the nerves of thrill-seekers.

A highlight of these functions will be the Citizenship Award Ceremonies around the region, which will see 22 local residents become Australian citizens. Local Australia Day award recipients for 2012 will also be represented on the day.

Port Macquarie-Hastings Administrator, Neil Porter said Australia Day was a significant day and an opportunity for people in the community to unite and celebrate all things Australian.

“I’d like to see as many local residents as possible coming together to celebrate what’s great about being an Australian,” Mr Porter said.

Mr Porter said the winners of the Australia Day Awards for the Port-Macquarie Hastings will be announced on the eve of our national day at a presentation at the Glasshouse, allowing awardees the opportunity to be involved in the formalities and celebrations throughout the day.

There are five categories this year including Citizen of the Year, Young Citizen of the Year, Senior Citizen of the Year - male and female, and Community Group of the Year. (See Pages 6, 7 and 13)

The inaugural Port Macquarie’s Got Talent will hit the stage on Australia Day at Westport Park, Port Macquarie.

Council’s Corporate Event Co-ordinator urged all ages to register their details for the talent quest taking place at 5pm.

“Whether you’re a singer, acrobat, dancer or magician make sure to register your details and show off your hidden talent to the Hastings,” Ms Mead said.

To round off celebrations is the outdoor screening of the Australian classic, The Man from Snowy River at Westport Park.

Participants can register their details for Port Macquarie’s Got Talent via the Council’s website at www.pmhc.nsw.gov.au/portsgottalent.

For full program details for Australia Day celebrations, head to Council’s website www.pmhc.nsw.gov.au/australiaday

LOCAL SCENE

In Laurieton there are a host of activities to join in. Following breakfast the annual “beach” cricket kicks off at Vince Inmon fields with plenty of skiting, well-mannered sledging, crazy zinc designs, interesting Aussie uniforms and showing off.

After the cricket there are activities at the Laurieton United Services Club riverfront and a fun day at North Haven Beach - both begin at 11am.

At the LUSC there will be Aussie-themed games, food, music and entertainment outside and inside the Sports Bar from 11am to 4pm. Games like gumboot throwing, sack races, spud and spoon races, three-legged races, jumping castle, bobbing for apples, trivia and the now-famous pavlova eating competition will keep everyone laughing.

The Camden Haven Bombers AFL club will organise face painting and temporary tattoos.

Camden Haven Dragon Boat Club will host a ‘come and try day’ at the LUSC on Australia Day for anyone interested in giving the sport a go. The dragon boaters have challenged the directors and staff of the LUSC to a dragon boat showdown on the river behind the club.

At North Haven Beach the Camden Haven Surf Life Saving Club was to host a family fun day from 11am however due to the likelihood of inclement weather, organisers have postponed the event until Easter and apologise if this has caused any incovenience.

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