So we have arrived at 2018, and for some Highlanders their celebrations to bring in the new year would have been spectacular.
Fireworks, festivals and all-round family fun would have been a part of their celebrations.
But not if they stayed in the Southern Highlands. Sure there were various dinners and entertainment on offer at some of the licensed premises across the region.
In fact, the Southern Highland News provided a list of the activities and entertainment that was available.
We promoted these activities on Facebook and through our website and it soon became apparent that many people in the community were not happy with the offerings - or to be more succinct – they were disappointed with the lack of celebratory events for families. Facebook comments included:
Jenny Perinich Laus: “There is actually NOTHING happening in the Highlands for families and youths. Wingecarribee Shire Council get your act together and do something that will benefit the community. Where are the fireworks ?”
Melanie Morschel: “Such a shame there isn‘t a kid friendly event with early fireworks in the Highlands. We used to live in a village of 300 people where the local pub put on a fantastic NYE fireworks display.”
Lynn Griffiths: “We need a large screen set up in Bradman Oval showing live coverage of the Sydney two Fireworks displays. Bouncy castles, rides and food stalls around the perimeter.”
There were about 40 people who commented on similar lines. Some even suggested heading down the mountain to Kangaroo Valley where fireworks were part of the celebration.
A special family-friendly event that brings in the new year in the Southern Highlands is wanted and clearly needed.
We have the ability to do fireworks – they are a highlight of the Moss Vale Show. And we have several suitable venues – Moss Vale Showground, Bradman Oval, Robertson Showground, Bong Bong Racecourse… to name a few.
At the very least a fair-type environment with a big screen showing movies – and of course the fireworks on Sydney Harbour – should be on offer.
Let’s hope the powers-that-be pay attention to what many families in the Southern Highlands want so that the 2019 New Year’s Eve celebrations in the Highlands are something to remember for all the right reasons.