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    Stephanie Castleman at a Horsham Youth Festival at Sawyer Park in 2019.

Youth leaders create Wimmera Fest in Horsham

A landmark collaboration between the region’s youngest leaders will see Horsham host a youth festival next month as part of National Youth Week celebrations.

Hindmarsh Shire Youth Council attended a meeting with Horsham’s newly formed youth council to share ideas and plan possible future partnerships and events.

The first of such collaborative events is just one month away.

Wimmera Fest, from 4pm to 8pm on April 5 at Horsham’s Sawyer Park, is set to feature a range of activities including a talent show, photo booth, pop-up beauty salon, temporary tattooist, music and food.

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Horsham Rural City Council youth services planning and engagement officer Annie Mintern said while the youth event was ‘very much still in development’, it would be similar to last year’s Horsham Youth Festival.

At this stage, organisers are looking for young people who are interested in being involved in the event’s talent show, where prizes including a people’s choice award are up for grabs.

Ms Mintern said people aged between 12 and 25 who sing, dance, perform magic acts, play music or have any other ‘quirky talent’ they might like to share, could all get involved in the event.

She said interested people could register their act online at

Hindmarsh Shire Council Rainbow representative Clarissa Bigham said the young councillors involved at the planning meeting were excited to have the chance to share ideas with and learn from youth in other areas of the region.

“It is awesome to be able to visit Horsham Youth Council and share ideas,” she said.

“I think it is important to have activities outside our area because this is helping us to learn from each other and it is fun to meet other people and plan events together.”

The Horsham-Hindmarsh youth meeting followed a Hindmarsh Shire youth councillors annual leadership retreat at Dimboola’s Riverside Holiday Park.

Supported by FreeZA, the retreat puts the councillors through an intensive weekend led by youth education specialists YLead, helping them develop skills in areas including leadership development, creative problem-solving, positive communication and how to put goals and ideas into action.

Hindmarsh community development officer Gaby Castro said the retreat provided councillors with the foundations to work together as a team and an opportunity to ‘build on their individual strengths to organise activities for their respective town and the Hindmarsh Shire’.

The entire March 4, 2020 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!