Australia Day: time to reflect, respect and celebrate

NSW Minister for Multiculturalism, Mark Coure has described Australia Day 2022 as a time to reflect, respect and celebrate.

"Australia Day will celebrate our resilience and unity, while reflecting on the remarkable ways our communities have responded in these challenging times," Mr Coure said.

Releasing details of the 2022 Australia Day program, Mr Coure said the NSW Government recognises it is still an incredibly difficult time for so many across NSW.

"I hope that our Australia Day celebrations provide everyone with the optimism and normality that we need as we learn to live with COVID-19," he said.

The day will start with First Nations artwork projected onto the sails of the Sydney Opera House at dawn by Pitjantjara Artist David Miller.

The Australian National and Australian Aboriginal flags will be raised together on the Harbour Bridge in a symbol of unity, recognition and inclusion.

The importance of the world's oldest living culture will be recognised with WugulOra (meaning 'One mob') at Barangaroo Reserve, with a morning ceremony of cleansing, reflecting and connecting with First Nations people.

"It's a day where we can acknowledge the significant contributions that everyone makes to our nation, from First Nations Australians who have lived here for 65,000 years and everyday Australians doing extraordinary things to keep us safe, to our newest citizens who bring richness and strength from many cultures," Mr Coure said.

Yvonne Weldon - Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Land Council and Deputy Chair of the ADCNSW said Australia Day is about recognition and striving to move the conversation forward by acknowledging the diversity of views, listening, connecting and embracing a collective voice.

"It is important that First Nations culture is reflected in the program, but equally as important is much of the Sydney program is guided by First Nations representatives and features many artists showcasing the richness and historical significance of culture through modern performances and story-telling," Ms Weldon said.

Sydney Harbour will be a focal point for the celebrations.

Program details:

5.30am - 6am: Dawn reflection, Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge.

7.30am - 8.30am: WugulOra morning cleansing ceremony, Barangaroo Reserve.

9am - 10am: Oz Day 10km Wheelchair Race, The Rocks.

10.30am - 5pm: Vintage Bus Rides, Macquarie Street, Sydney.

10.30am - 4pm, Sydney Harbour events including Ferrython (10.45am to 11.30am), Salute to Australia (11.30am to 12.05pm) featuring an Australian Army, Navy and Air Force tri-forces salute; 12noon RAAF Fast Jet Fly Past from Sydney Heads to the Harbour Bridge, Australia day Harbour Parade (12.45pm - 2pm), and the Tall Ships Race (1pm-1.30pm).

4.30pm: Live stream of Loyd Mayor's Citizenship Ceremony.

12noon to 6pm: Australia's Biggest BBQ, a free event at Tumbalong Park, Darling Harbour.

7.30pm - 9.3pm: Australia Day Live outdoor, free-ticketed concert at the Sydney Opera House Forecourt combined with a musical and fireworks spectacular over the harbour.

An all-star line-up includes Casey Donovan, Shane Howard, William Barton and Isaiah Firebrace, Emma Donovan, INXS founding member turned solo artist Andrew Farriss, rock musician Jon Stevens, country singers Amber Lawrence, Hayley Jensen, Kirsty Lee Akers and Aleyce Simmonds performing a stunning reimagined version of True Blue as a tribute to all Australians, tenor Mark Vincent, opera artist Josh Piterman, the KARI singers, and Koomurri dancers, all backed up by John Foreman's Aussie Pops Orchestra.

Limited free tickets to experience the event from the Sydney Opera House Forecourt will be available on Tuesday, 18 January 2022 at 10.00am.

Spectators can head down to the Circular Quay Foreshore and join the atmosphere and spread across the many vantage points. No tickets are required for the foreshore vantage points, people are encouraged to get in early, physically distance and plan ahead.

Australia Day Live will also be broadcast live on ABC TV and ABC iview from 7:30pm to 9:30pm.

For more information on Australia Day in NSW, visit www.australiaday.com.au.

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This story Australia Day: time to reflect, respect and celebrate first appeared on St George & Sutherland Shire Leader.