12 March 2013

Canberra Day for the Centenary. A review

| johnboy
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There has been some adverse comment about yesterday’s festivities so I thought I’d share my own perspective.

It’s true parts of the program ranged into surreal, or even bizarre territory.

There may not have been enough vendors (tricky to plan for to an un-ticketed event on a public holiday) but Civic was a minute away on my bicycle and is positively full of places one could buy beer.

So much of my day was spent sitting on a hill drinking beer and having a laugh with friends while taking in entertainment.

And that is one of my favourite things to do in all the world.

The fireworks were pretty good (giant letters forming NATION a touch wanky for my tastes but good fun as part of the show).

regatta point packed

The crowds were big, but good natured, the weather was sublime.

Hancock Basement played their last ever show to a big crowd on a big stage which was a nice way to farewell them.

hancock basement

Stateovmind were good value whipping the crowd up (much better live than on their unearthed recordings).


And then Fun Machine concluded proceedings for me and I was away home on my bicycle.

fun machine

For all this I paid nothing. So a pretty good result of a day in my opinion.

Here’s some video of the music, including Hancock Basement’s very last performance together and Fun Machine being batty.

And here’s the full slideshow of my pictures:

UPDATE: Madame Cholet has sent in some video of the fireworks from the bubbly bar.

I managed to get the finale of the fireworks on camera last night – although apologies for my shaky camera work. As a rule, I’m not greatly impressed by fireworks and consider that I have seen well enough in my time to never really care if I saw any more, but these were surprisingly good, along with the fabulous noise – probably all due to our great location at the Bubbly Bar.

The reaction was typically Canberran – at least at the Bubbly Bar – a few whoops, and some polite claps!

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I agree with Johnboy – v relaxing to sit on the hill and watch a few bands from my youth.

I was interested to go last night as it would have been great. We have attended the Canberra Day concerts on many occaisions along with the Australia Day concerts. They are great events.

But alas, it was a school night and our kids had had a massive weekend already so I went home, cooked them dinner and brewed beer instead.

Happy Birthday Canberra!

We’ve a bit of a hill in our backyard. Great for sitting on with friends and a beer. And you can listen to music you really like. Not live, but it’s not because it’s live that it’s good even if it being free lowers your expectations considerably.

Maybe it was good as an event for teenagers or the ‘adult without responsibilities’ equivalent. NOT a family-friendly event at all by the sound of it. Which I expected so I didn’t even bother going. I spent the day playing board games with my offspring, went for a nice walk at the river and then drove up to Mt Pleasant for the fireworks and back home. Let’s face it. Whatever Canberra is, events and entertainment are not its biggest strength. (Though We Built This City was the best family entertainment I’d been to in ages!)

I will continue the celebration with a couple more gigs at The Spiegeltent later this week. Worth the money and there’s two bars.

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