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Ten things to do around Canberra this Reconciliation Day long weekend (24–27 May)

Zoe Pleasants 23 May 2019

Actor Kristian Jenkins will star in Epitaph, this weekend at the Australian War Memorial. Photo: AWM.

It is Reconciliation Day this Monday, a public holiday which marks the anniversary of the 1967 referendum and kicks off National Reconciliation Week. Briggs is back in town with his Reconciliation Day Eve concert at the Canberra Theatre on Friday night, this year featuring Yothu Yindi, and there is a Reconciliation Day event in Glebe Park on Monday. The National Gallery and National Museum of Australia are also good places to head on Monday to mark the day. The National Gallery is staying open for 24 hours starting from 10 pm Friday to promote #knowmyname, a campaign to recognise and celebrate women artists. There are two vintage fashion markets on this weekend—Frock up Canberra in Griffith on Saturday and Three Sixty Fashion Market in Kingston on Sunday. The Brumbies are playing at home, the YMCA Running Club of Canberra is running its 50th half marathon event and a selection of films from the recent Human Rights Arts and Film Festival will be screening at the National Film and Sound Archive.

All weekend

Museum Theatre—Epitaph

Where: Australian War Memorial
When: Friday, Saturday, Sunday & Monday 11:40 am, 12:40 pm & 1:40 pm
Epitaph is a museum theatre piece written by Ross Mueller and created by the Australian War Memorial in collaboration with The Street Theatre. It captures the emotional struggle for Australian families at the end of the First World War as they faced the task of writing an epitaph for their loved ones buried in foreign lands. It will be performed by Kristian Jenkins in the lower level of ANZAC Hall, the production is 14 minutes in length and is free.

50th YMCA Canberra Half Marathon

Where: Lennox Gardens
When: Saturday 1–3 pm & Sunday 8 am
The YMCA Runners Club of Canberra is holding its annual half marathon this weekend, and this year is the 50th anniversary of the event. The race starts and finishes at Lennox Gardens, opposite the Hyatt Hotel and goes around the west basin of Lake Burley Griffin. It is $60 for members and $80 for non-members to enter. Register online up until midnight Friday and between 1 – 3 pm on Saturday in person at Lennox Gardens. Also on Saturday at 2 pm, there will be a 1.6 km mini jog event for kids and a 5 km fun run to help you warm up for the main event.

Click here to read our story on one of the half marathon’s original participants.

Human Rights Arts and Film Festival

Where: National Film and Sound Archive
When: Friday, Saturday & Sunday
A selection of films from the recent Human Rights Arts & Film Festival, which was held in Melbourne early this month, are travelling to Canberra this weekend. Five films will be screened starting on Thursday night with Stop the Boats, an Australian film directed by Simon Kurian about how a three-word slogan demonised people seeking asylum. Other films being screened over the weekend are:

  • The Panama Papers—Friday 6 pm—a documentary about the biggest global corruption scandal in history
  • Still Recording—Friday 8:15 pm—a documentary about the Syrian civil insurgency crafted from 450 hours of footage smuggled out of Syria
  • Giant Little Ones—Saturday 6 pm—a Canadian coming of age film that explores identity and the importance of love without labels
  • Femme Shorts—Saturday 8:15 pm—set of short films capturing the stories and voices of women

Tickets are $23 for adults and $17 for concession. Book here.

Friday

Brumbies

Where: GIO Stadium
When: 7:45 pm
The Brumbies are playing the South African Bulls this Friday night at home. The Brumbies won against the Bulls last year in South Africa, can they repeat the feat in front of their own fans? Tickets from $12.25, book here.

Know My Name Launch

Where: National Gallery of Australia
When: Friday 10 pm–Saturday 10 pm
The National Gallery of Australia is launching the campaign #knowmyname this weekend to recognise and celebrate creative women. The campaign builds on the work of the National Museum for Women in the Arts in Washington D.C. which, in 2016, asked people if they could name five women artists. The work of women artists comprises approximately 25 per cent of the Australian art collection at the National Gallery. Acknowledging this imbalance, the Gallery will unveil a major exhibition of Australian women artists in May 2020. In the meantime, this weekend the Gallery is launching #knowmyname by opening its doors for 24 hours starting from 10 pm Friday. There will be a pop-up bar until 2 am, a DJ, inspiring stories about Australian women artists and plenty of art to enjoy. There will also be t-shirts featuring the names of Australian female artists available for purchase from the Gallery’s shop. Register here.

Saturday

Frock Up Canberra

Where: Griffith Neighbourhood Centre
When: 10 am–4 pm
Frock up Australia is hosting another vintage fashion fair this Saturday at the Griffith Neighborhood Hall. There will be racks of antique, vintage and retro fashion, and tables of textiles, jewellery, accessories, fashion books and magazines. Embrace the slow fashion movement with some guilt-free shopping.

Sunday

Three Sixty Fashion Market

Where: Fitters Workshop, Kingston
When: 10 am–3 pm
The Three Sixty Fashion Market will be on this Sunday next to the Old Bus Depot Markets. Three Sixty is about ethical, sustainable and local fashion which is stylish, fun and great value. The items for sale are quality vintage, retro, handmade and pre-loved clothing and accessories.

Reconciliation Day Eve

Where: Canberra Theatre
When: 6:30 pm
In a tradition he started last year, rapper Briggs is returning to Canberra to mark Reconciliation Day and National Sorry Day with an amazing line-up of Indigenous artists and musicians. This year’s line-up includes

  • Emily Wurramara—a singer-songwriter who sings songs about her childhood and from her heart in both English and her traditional Anindilyakwa language
  • Alice Skye—a singer-songwriter and Wergaia woman
  • Briggs—rapper, founder of Bad Apples Music and insightful critic of Australian culture
  • Yothu Yindi & The Treaty Project—this project was originally launched in 2017 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Yothu Yindi’s hit song Treaty. It brings together the founding members of Yothu Yindi—Witiyana Marika, Stu Kellaway and Kevin Malngay Yunupingu—with other former band members and artists including Kamahi Djordon King, Yirrnga Yunupingu and Yimila Gurruwiwi in an exciting new, electronica-driven incarnation of Yothu Yindi.

Tickets are $49 for adults, $39 for concession, book here.

Monday

Reconciliation in the Park

Where: Glebe Park
When: 10:30 am–2:30 pm
Celebrate Reconciliation Day in Glebe Park with a concert spread across two stages, headlined by electro-tribal pop duo The Merindas and featuring local musicians Grace Obst, Jye Hopkins, The Chesterfield BandJohnny Huckle and others. There will also be Indigenous dancers and performers including the Wiradjuri Echoes, heaps of cultural activities for the kids to enjoy including basket weaving, bush tucker talks, storytelling and art workshops. The day kicks off at 10:30 am with a Welcome to Country, find the full program here.

Reconciliation Day

Where: National Gallery of Australia
When: 10 am–12:30 pm
The Gallery is marking Reconciliation Day with a welcome and performance in front of the Gallery at 10 am. Then stay in the garden for bush tucker tours or head inside and make art in the new Learning Gallery. Join a weaving and yarning circle and listen to stories about local history in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Galleries. There will also be a public tour of the Gallery’s Indigenous works at 12:30 pm. These tours continue at the same time daily throughout Reconciliation Week.


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