AUSTRALIA Day will be a multi-day event in Bathurst as councillor Alex Christian moves closer to his dream of a massive community celebration.
Since joining Bathurst Regional Council, Cr Christian has been blunt about how lacklustre he thinks the city's Australia Day celebrations are, each year demanding for bigger and better.
He was on track to do just that in 2021, but COVID-19 hampered those plans, forcing him to compromise.
Instead of a big fete in Bicentennial Park, Cr Christian says the Bathurst Fun Fair will return to the showground from the weekend preceding Australia Day.
"What we're doing this year is celebrating Australia Day over a full weekend, so Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, by having the fun fair at the showground over those days," he said.
"With COVID, it's been really difficult this year to plan anything too major, because we're a little bit worried things could change.
"It's a very fluid situation, which is really disappointing for me because I had grand plans, but we had to be reasonable, so we think [the fun fair] is going to be excellent."
Council has also applied for a $16,000 grant, which would be used to decorate the central business district.
Council will maintain some of the city's Australia Day traditions, including having a citizenship ceremony on Tuesday, January 26.
That event will be held at Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre.
The aquatic centre will also host its Australia Day event, offering a window of free entry for residents.
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Cr Christian said it is not the big celebration he wanted, but it is still an improvement on previous years and a definite step in the right direction for future years.
"It was so important to me to have something, even during this COVID period, where people can actually go out and do something for Australia Day, and I think the fun fair will certainly do that," he said.
"... I will watch on with interest, because if the fun fair works at the showground, then maybe the showground can be a good venue for massive Australia Day festivities into the future. I'm looking at live music, food vendors, things of that nature, and then fireworks at the end of the day."