Let’s make the next New Year’s Eve an event for everyone

Kim Fischer 5 January 2018 19

Canberra’s midnight fireworks display. Photo: Joanne Blake.

Why don’t we expand New Year’s Eve fireworks celebrations beyond Civic? The Civic events can be daunting for families with younger children, the elderly, and those who are less mobile. Fighting through crowds to try to get a reasonable vantage point while keeping track of all your offspring is tricky at the best of times. Some people take significant risks to get a better spot, such as the families who parked on the median strip of Parkes Way. Getting home afterwards can also be gruelling.

Suburbs in other capital cities already hold their own local events to ring in the New Year. Lake Ginninderra and Lake Tuggeranong would be fabulous facilities to have relaxed, community-focused events that could be less stressful for families who want to picnic on the shores. Having a 9 pm fireworks display at our local lakes would be a boon to those who would prefer to not battle traffic and negotiate the crush of crowds.

Canberra’s population has doubled in the last 40 years. Our city is well and truly big enough to support multiple events. In Belconnen particularly, the high-rise apartment buildings house a significant local population and provide an ideal vantage point to enjoy lake fireworks for those without the capability or inclination to attend the Civic celebration.

Having local events promote community spirit and can provide a significant boost for local businesses. The Government should work with the local art centres to fund family-friendly New Year’s Eve events that celebrate the past year and encourage reflection towards the future.

This doesn’t have to be exclusive to New Year’s Eve, of course. Fireworks make any event memorable for children, and they could be included in nearly any part of the year’s celebratory calendar. Australia Day, Queen’s Birthday, Reconciliation Day, Canberra Day – all great potential candidates for local events instead of or in addition to city spectaculars.

What do you think? Is it time to move our public holiday celebrations to the regions? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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19 Responses to Let’s make the next New Year’s Eve an event for everyone
Gail Langendorf Gail Langendorf 2:21 pm 08 Jan 18

OK - as long as civic still counts as a region?? I mean there are humans that live here too!! But if you intend that all of us in the central areas will have to go to Tuggeranong or Gungahlin to see NYE, then I am not amenable to this change! All in all the silly season was lame in civic this year!

AbbDon Helen AbbDon Helen 10:11 pm 07 Jan 18

No .. this brings life to the city ... it is inclusive ... love walking around smiling and chatting to people from all over Canberra who come “to town” for this event ... there is far too much decentralisation which just waters down the concept of celebration

Capital Retro Capital Retro 7:15 am 07 Jan 18

Fireworks have become boring and polluting not to mention the cost which adds to the money ratepayers are already committed to thanks to the trolley folly and other pet projects.

Barry Maher Barry Maher 7:13 am 07 Jan 18

Hear Hear!

Mi Kockinarse Mi Kockinarse 9:21 pm 06 Jan 18

Glebe Park thing was dreadful... I liked those kids concerts too

    Mi Kockinarse Mi Kockinarse 6:58 am 07 Jan 18

    Robert Warn yes I’m sure they wasted a lot of money on the Tram etc... I mean seriously no Christmas Tree 🤔

Rach El Rach El 4:35 pm 06 Jan 18

How about we get rid of fireworks completely? They are a huge expense for just a moment of satisfaction and let’s face it, they are never as good as people hope. They leave a big mess to clean up, shut down roads, frighten animals and put a huge strain on services such as the RSPCA. It could be celebrated in so many other ways - bands, a light show, etc.

    Kim Fischer Kim Fischer 4:49 pm 06 Jan 18

    The whole world enjoys fireworks on NYE. I would hate to see the ACT govt abandon it.

    Rach El Rach El 4:50 pm 06 Jan 18

    Clearly the whole world doesn’t enjoy fireworks...

    Rach El Rach El 4:54 pm 06 Jan 18

    And I know many people that feel the same way.

    Kim Fischer Kim Fischer 5:19 pm 06 Jan 18

    Rachel Crawford ok, let’s have fireworks for the people who enjoy them and the people who don’t can do something else.

    Ray Dickson Ray Dickson 5:44 pm 06 Jan 18

    Check out “drone lighting shows”. They are expected that they could be done in place of fireworks displays and wouldn’t have anywhere near the impact

    Ray Dickson Ray Dickson 5:47 pm 06 Jan 18


    Rach El Rach El 5:48 pm 06 Jan 18

    Perfect solution!

    Kim Fischer Kim Fischer 7:23 pm 06 Jan 18

    Ray Dickson that looks cool!

    Ray Dickson Ray Dickson 7:35 pm 06 Jan 18

    Kim Fischer yeah it’s pretty awesome! I love fireworks shows, I really do, but the world does move on and maybe we all should too

    Kim Fischer Kim Fischer 7:39 pm 06 Jan 18

    Ray Dickson sure. Never heard of a drone show before. I just want to better utilize the suburban lakes for families and people who are less mobile.

    Joanne Clark Joanne Clark 10:00 pm 06 Jan 18

    Why can't we have the 9pm ones in local areas for families and still have the midnight ones in the city

    Alana Matthews Alana Matthews 11:20 pm 06 Jan 18

    Totally agree Rach!

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