IT is disappointing to see how little effort councils around the region put into creating family-friendly New Year’s celebrations.
As a child, New Year’s Eve ranked closely behind my birthday and Christmas as one of the most exciting nights of the year.
My family and I went annually to Lakes Entrance’s New Year’s event on the lake, where thousands each year are entertained by local bands, rides and firework displays at 9.30pm and midnight.
It was an exciting get-together with aunties, uncles and cousins, sharing a picnic, drinking lots of Passiona and lighting a sparkler or two. There would be fights over who got the big camping chairs and the last cupcake.
There is a distinct lack of anything of the type around central Victoria.
Most revellers at Castlemaine’s Camp Reserve yesterday commented on how few people attended the event, and most pointed to a lack of band or children’s entertainment as in previous years.
Bendigo did not even have an event which children could attend. A good New Year’s event can be magic for the community. Families and friends getting together, revelling in the warm, summer’s air.
Early fireworks give a focal point of the evening for families with younger children, and allow people who may have to work or might not want to be up late to feel part of the celebrations.
People are encouraged to be out in public for the night, creating a fun, family friendly environment.
There’s hardly a better feeling than that of a community celebrating together, as experienced in Lakes Entrance.
Maybe the City of Greater Bendigo and the Mount Alexander Shire councils should take note.