MULTICULTURALISM will be the focus of the city this week, with the launch of the Bendigo Festival of Cultures.
Audience members were treated to a diverse spectacular of performers at The Capital at the weekend for the launch of the festival.
Started in 2001 by the Loddon Campaspe Multicultural Services, the festival will showcase the best multicultural cuisine and entertainment across the region.
City of Greater Bendigo Mayor Barry Lyons launched the festival on Sunday and said council were pleased to support such a unique event.
"Bendigo has been extending a welcoming hand to people from all over the world during the earliest days of history," he said.
"From the first days of settlement there has been a blending of cultures in our city which has formed the richly diverse and exciting social fabric which we experience today.
"We are proud to keep this connection alive with festival like this Bendigo Festival of Cultures because it is a celebration of all that we are today.
"This festival celebrates the diversity of all cultures in our society and showcases music, dance, arts, food, activities and games."
The Bendigo Festival of Cultures goes until March 23, with a range of activities and events planned.
Highlights include the Multicultural Arts Exhibition, a Multi-Faith Dinner and Forum, a Harmony Day Celebration, a Multicultural Forum and a Family Fun Day.
For a full list of events visit www.bendigofestivalofcultures.org.au