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Australia Day commemorations are planned throughout the Shire for January 25 and 26 although most Australians see the day as just another holiday.

The Australia Day Awards and Citizenship Ceremony will be a highlight in our community. The event will be held on January 25 in the Town Hall but, due to COVID-19 restrictions, the event is limited to dignitaries, new citizens and their families. The ceremony will be live-streamed on Council’s Facebook page commencing at 6:00 pm.

Aunty Marilyne Nicholls on behalf of the Dja Da Wurrung will offer a traditional Welcome to Country.

Hepburn Shire Mayor, Cr Lesley Hewitt will be the presiding officer for the citizenship ceremony. All Councillors have indicated that they will attend the event.

The Hon Catherine King MP will read a message from the Hon Alex Hawke, Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs.

Mary-Ann Thomas MP and Louise Staley MP will also address attendees.

In addition to investing new Australian Citizens, Australia Day Awards will be announced for Citizen of the Year, Young Citizen of the Year and Community Event of the Year.

On January 26, the annual Terra Nullius breakfast will be held between 8am-10am outside Town Hall, Daylesford.

Clunes will hold a sunrise walk and flag raising at Mt Beckworth Reserve and a pancake breakfast. Later in the day, there will be a flag-lowering and community BBQ with live entertainment.

Trentham will hold a flag-raising at 11:30 am in the Town Square with a community BBQ and live entertainment.

Glenlyon will hold a flag lowering at the Recreation Reserve with a community BBQ and live entertainment.

Creswick will hold a flag raising ceremony and breakfast at Park Lake Reserve.

Details and booking information for these Australia Day events can be found on the Council website.

According to a recent survey, only about a third of Australians take part in celebrations.

The date for Australia Day continues to be controversial. To many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people it is recognised as the day the dispossession and marginalisation of Indigenous Australians began and is affiliated with a long history of violence and trauma.