On behalf of our family I'd like to give a big shout out to the City of Greater Bendigo for providing such a fabulous event for our city over Easter.
We live in the centre of the city so it's right at our front door - thousands and thousands of people having fun, sharing in dozens of happy, family activities.
A sensational event such as this doesn't just happen. It takes enormous effort by many people to organise and implement such a fantastic festival.
Of course the crowning glory is the parade.
Wow, what a parade!
It was worth getting up at 5am to line up the chairs for a great position!
The spectacle of Loong, Sun Loong and now our exquisite new Dai Gum Loong brought tears to many eyes of the estimated 80,000 watching the parade.
The vision was breathtaking.
The buzz was spine tingling.
The cheering was deafening.
The pride of Bendigonians was palpable.
Congratulations to the Bendigo Chinese Association and the Golden Dragon Museum and the hundreds of volunteers on a supreme effort.
Thankyou to everyone involved, you give our city a truly wonderful Easter to share with so many.
Read more: Dai Gum Loong makes debut at Easter parade
Today's announcement from the Australian Electoral Commission that about 70,000 18-24 year olds have registered to vote before rolls closed reminds me of a similar surge in youth enrolments 18 months ago.
In the immediate lead up to the marriage equality postal survey in 2017, 558 18-24 year olds in Bendigo added their names to the rolls. Nationally, the total youth enrolment at the time of that awful process was 88.6 per cent.
The result of the divisive marriage equality survey, inflicted at great personal cost upon millions of LGBTQI individuals, families and communities was a resounding Yes in Bendigo. At 68.7 per cent, it was higher here than not only Victoria, but across Australia overall. This week the enrollment of 18-24 year olds increased further and sits at a record 88.8 per cent.
As we saw during the marriage equality "debate" and recent climate change protests, Australian youth are politically enfranchised and they are actively engaged. When they set out in May to pick up their ballots and democracy sausges, I doubt many young Australians will be looking upon the architects of humiliation and captains of coal with any fondness, and will cast their first vote accordingly.
Letters, including those on election issues, must carry the name, full address and telephone number of the author. Responsibility for election comment in this issue is accepted by editor Nicole Ferrie. Writers should disclose any alliance with political or community organisations. Election candidates should declare themselves as such when submitting letters. Send letters to Bendigo Advertiser, PO Box 61, Bendigo 3552 or at bendigoadvertiser.com.au
Have you signed up to the Bendigo Advertiser's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in central Victoria.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.