Celebrate Australia Day virtually this year
Published on 11 January 2021
Residents are being encouraged to celebrate Australia Day virtually this year with Horsham Rural City Council’s livestream on 26 January.
While ongoing COVID-19 restrictions have prevented the traditional Sawyer Park ceremony from occurring, Australia Day Committee members have reimagined the event to ensure everyone still has the opportunity to celebrate.
A formal Australia Day ceremony, including the presentation of Citizen, Youth Citizen and Community Event of the Year Awards, will be livestreamed via the HRCC website and Facebook from 9am.
Meanwhile ceremonies at Dadswells Bridge, Brimpaen and Natimuk will go ahead as COVID-safe outdoor gatherings.
Chief Executive Officer Sunil Bhalla said Council understood that many people were disappointed that they could not attend in person.
"The uncertainty around planning the event with COVID-19 was the key reason a decision was made before Christmas to hold the event virtually," Mr Bhalla said.
"As things currently stand with two weeks to go we could have conceivably had an outdoor event, with COVID safe restrictions in place. But that is with the benefit of hindsight.
"The Virtual Australia Day event will be streamed live to our community and include many elements of our traditional event such as Australia Day Awards and Citizenship Ceremony.
"It is also an opportunity to do things a little differently this year in Horsham, noting that there are also Australia Day events planned for Dadswells Bridge, Brimpaen and Natimuk," he said.
Mayor Robyn Gulline said Australia Day 2021 would provide an important opportunity for our community to reflect on the challenges of the past year, respect the sacrifices and contributions of those who responded in a time of need and celebrate being together and what is means to be an Australian.
“2020 was a challenging year for us all, but it also highlighted the power of our community’s spirit. We want to recognise those who really went above and beyond last year, and will be livestreaming the ceremony to involve as many people as possible,” Cr Gulline said.
“This Australia Day, our message is to reflect, respect and celebrate. We will reflect on our community’s past, respect all cultures and the stories of those who call Australia home, and celebrate our community’s unsung heroes and new citizens,” Cr Gulline said.
Brimpaen Hall: Egg and bacon rolls served from 8am. Register attendance with Sue on 0419 539696
Natimuk: Ceremony from 11am at NC2, followed by lunch
Dadswells Bridge Hall: Ceremony from 11.30am, followed by lunch