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    Wesa Chau.
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    Tony Cavanagh. Picture: RACING.COM

Time to reflect, respect, celebrate Australia Day

Northern Grampians Shire Council is inviting the community to ‘reflect, respect and celebrate’ at upcoming Australia Day events in St Arnaud and Stawell.

The celebrations, COVID-19 permitting, will occur on Wednesday, January 26, the official Australia Day public holiday.

The council will welcome two Australia Day ambassadors this year – television presenter and women’s advocate Tonia Todman and horseracing identity and reconciliation advocate Tony Cavanagh. 

Ms Todman will attend the St Arnaud ceremony and Mr Cavanagh will be part of Stawell celebrations.

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Northern Grampians mayor Tony Driscoll said he was excited to be attending Australia Day events and to host ambassadors during their visit.

“Our community really revels in Australia Day; you just have to look at the jam-packed itineraries to know that,” he said. 

“It is an occasion to stop and reflect on our diverse identities as Australians, and our need to reconcile with our indigenous community, to celebrate the incredible achievements of individuals and groups over the past year and to welcome our newest citizens to the shire. 

“Come along and share in the festivities with us and if you cannot, tune in to our live stream on the day to be a part of this special day.”

Stawell celebrations will be at Cato Park from 6pm, with awards and a citizen ceremony, free barbecue and family activities. 

St Arnaud events will be at Market Square from 8am with a free Lions clubs breakfast, 9am, awards and flag-raising ceremony. Festivities will continue at St Arnaud Town Hall with a free morning tea.


An experienced cultural diversity expert will be Hindmarsh Shire Council’s Australia Day ambassador. 

Wesa Chau founded Australian Federation of International Students in 2002. 

She has been on boards such as Carers Victoria, Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria and the Multicultural Business Ministerial Council.

Ms Chau is the chief executive of Cultural Intelligence, a specialist consulting firm that helps organisations better navigate cultural diversity.

Council officials will present citizen of the year and young citizen of the year awards at Nhill’s Australia Day event.

Lions Club of Nhill will host a barbecue at noon in Goldsworthy Park.

Dimboola, Jeparit and Rainbow will also host events, with flag-raising ceremonies along with addresses from Ms Chau, deputy mayor Brett Ireland and other community members.

Rainbow Lions Club will host a breakfast barbecue at Rainbow Oasis starting from 7.30am, Jeparit Town Committee will host a barbecue from 9am at Menzies Square and Dimboola Country Women’s Association will host a morning tea from 10.30am at the rear of Dimboola Library.

The council has stressed that attendees must be fully vaccinated.

West Wimmera

West Wimmera Shire Council will welcome three Australia Day ambassadors to the region next week.

Duncan Stalker, Dominic Barbuto and Peter Langkamp will attend celebrations throughout the shire.

Mayor Bruce Meyer said it was wonderful to see three highly regarded individuals travelling to shire events.

Dr Stalker will speak at ceremonies at Edenhope and Dergholm. 

He has an extensive background in education and was Warrnambool Brauer College principal for 23 years.

Dr Stalker was president of Victorian Secondary Principals’ Association and Australian Secondary Principals’ Association, and he serves on the Order of Australia Association, Warrnambool RSL and Rotary club. 

Mr Barbuto will speak at Goroke and Harrow events. 

He is an art director and designer who ran an entertainment-based design studio for the past 36 years. 

Mr Barbuto is involved with various charities, including Support Act, which provides relief to Australian entertainment industry workers facing hardship or illness.

Dr Langkamp is a disability advocate who will speak at events in Kaniva and Apsley. 

He is a director of genU, The Disability Trust and ermha365 – organisations that advocate for a national focus on disability and mental health.

 He was previously president of Carers Australia. In 1995, he conceived and launched the FlyBuys program.

Cr Meyer said the three ambassadors would bring a wealth of knowledge to the shire.

“These people are highly motivated to make a difference in the world and in the lives of others,” he said.

“We are privileged to have such accomplished community contributors as our Australia Day ambassadors.”

West Wimmera council’s six celebrations are at Apsley Lions Park Playground at 11am, Kaniva Swimming Pool, 8am; Edenhope’s Henley Park, 8am; Goroke Memorial Hall, 8am; Harrow, Johnny Mullagh Reserve, 11.30am; and Dergholm Memorial Hall, 11am.


Yarriambiack Shire Council will host several breakfast celebrations in towns across the shire. All events will start at 8am.

Yarriambiack mayor Kylie Zanker said the events were a chance to celebrate the community.

“It is a real opportunity for everyone to celebrate getting together and be social,” she said. 

“I am looking forward to the awards ceremony where we can all appreciate the unsung heroes – ordinary people who do extraordinary things.” 

Yarriambiack Australia Day celebrations are at Warracknabeal Anzac Park Community Centre, with a cooked breakfast for a gold coin donation, awards, musical entertainment and guest speakers; Hopetoun, Memorial Hall courtyard, free breakfast and a guest speaker; Beulah, a flagpole ‘stroll’ from Beulah Post Office to Beulah Recreation Reserve, breakfast and guest speaker; Minyip, at Murtoa Neighbourhood House, breakfast celebrations; Speed/Tempy, at Speed Recreation Reserve, breakfast and a flag-raising, celebrations and guest speaker; Patchewollock, at Patchewollock Community Centre, breakfast celebrations and guest speaker; and Wallup, at Wallup Hall, breakfast celebrations and guest speaker. 

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The entire January 19, 2022 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!