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MEDIA STATEMENT - Changes to festive celebrations

The festive season in the Glenelg Shire will look a lot different this year, with several changes to our iconic annual celebrations and events.

Council has had to make the difficult decision to cancel the popular Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve events on the Portland Foreshore for 2020.

These events take months of extensive preparation and coordination. Given the ongoing uncertainty, limits on public gatherings and health and safety risks posed at the time of planning, Council was obligated to consider a COVID-Safe alternative.

As a result, we have worked closely with our local community groups, kindergartens, business groups and performers to create a series of inclusive virtual events that will be screened in lieu of the physical Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve festivities.

We encourage all community members to tune into the Glenelg Shire Facebook page on December 11 to celebrate a virtual Christmas Eve, and again on December 31 to celebrate a virtual New Year’s Eve, complete with performances from national and local artists.

Alongside the Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve events, another iconic celebration has also, regrettably, been cancelled.

The New Year’s Eve fireworks display over the Portland Harbour will not proceed for 2020.

Once again, this decision was taken at a time when the official health directions were to prevent any large crowds from congregating. In order to comply with these COVID-Safe orders, Council, like many of its counterparts across the South West, had no choice but to cancel its annual fireworks display.

We understand many people will be disappointed that these iconic festive events and celebrations will not proceed this year, however we are planning a range of COVID-Safe events over the summer period as part of our Light Up Glenelg campaign that are sure to entertain and connect our communities.

This includes the return of the Portland Foreshore carnival and amusements, run by TPA Shows. The carnival is expected to arrive in Portland on 26 December 2020 for their annual summer visit.

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