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Bicentenary to celebrate rich local heritage

An exploration through time will be the theme of an event celebrating our region’s bicentenary in October that will see the Port Macquarie CBD come to life with local art, music, food and rich local heritage.

Port Macquarie-Hastings Council alongside members of the community has developed the daylong event to celebrate 200 years since John Oxley first explored our region.

Local families are invited to save the date Sunday 28 October, and come together to celebrate this iconic milestone in our region’s history.

Acting Group Manager Sandra Wallace said the event is a great opportunity for the community to celebrate the stories, history and culture of our place.

“Our region has such a rich local heritage that’s simply fascinating, and the bicentenary offers a great opportunity for us all to reflect and remember where we’ve come from.

“We’re taking the best elements from our region’s most popular events and rolling them into a one-day fusion of art, music, food and history,” Ms Wallace said.

Locals and visitors are encouraged to set-up a picnic on Town Green and enjoy a lazy Sunday in the sun with family and friends, while also taking the opportunity to learn more about the history of our region. Picnickers will be able to purchase food from local businesses and food stalls which will line Town Square.

The bicentenary event celebrations will include interactive art, walking tours, busking and musical performances, Aboriginal dances and a variety of children’s activities.

Council is also working with local businesses and community groups to develop and support a range of satellite events which will be held over the event weekend.

In addition to the bicentenary event, Council has a number of other activities planned to commemorate our region’s bicentenary between 2018- 2021.

These include education programs for school kids, heritage trails, Glasshouse exhibitions and much more.

More than $8,000 has been provided to community groups to develop bicentenary projects as part of Council’s Community Grants program in 2018, with an additional $15,000 also to be provided to not-for- profit organisations to fund special projects and events.

Memorials to explorer John Oxley will also be installed, starting with the reinstatement of the historical monument at Town Beach in late August 2018. A new memorial to John Oxley is also planned for the region, and Council will soon be asking the community for suggestions on a suitable form and possible locations for this memorial.

A full list of community-led projects and calendar of events will be available in the coming weeks.

“Council encourages everyone to save the date in October for the community celebration of the bicentenary, and get involved in the many activities celebrating this iconic milestone right across the region,” Ms Wallace added.

For more information on the Port Macquarie-Hastings Bicentenary visit

This article has been republished with permission from the Port Macquarie-Hastings Council.

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