The Swiss-Italian Festa is set to go ahead in October after council agreed to a memorandum of understanding with Swiss Italian Festa Inc.

The MoU includes $10,000 funding to the Festa and $5,000 in-kind operational support.

The Swiss Italian Festa (SIF) commenced in 1992. It celebrates the legacy of Swiss Italian migrants who came to the Daylesford Hepburn Springs goldfields in the1850’s.

The Festa celebrates the regions exceptional food and wine, vibrant arts and cultural life, heritage buildings, and the springs, baths and spa.

Council first formalised a funding agreement with the SIF in 2010 and continued this until the event was cancelled in 2018 and 2019 due to lack of volunteer support. In 2019 Council Officers assisted the outgoing committee to call for new committee members and a new committee was formed. Plans were made to hold a 2020 event however due to COVID the event did not proceed.

Council supported the committee to obtain funding from Visit Victoria to engage a consultant to develop an Event Strategy for the Swiss Italian Festa. This strategy was completed in December 2020 and the committee are now planning a Swiss Italian Festa in 2021.

Under the Council’s Events Strategy, the SIF is categorised as a Signature/Iconic Event. In past years, the SIF has demonstrated that it attracts a substantial number of visitors from Victoria and interstate who stay ovenight and who spend money in the region. The event is also considered to ence the character and culture of Hepburn Shire.

Under the Strategy, events that qualify as Signature/Iconic events are eligible for Council support for up to five years.