Get a great feed among friends at Ballarat’s 2016 Harmony Festival on Sunday.
The Italian Association has the reins this year and Councillor Vicki Coltman said it would mean a feast for those at the Camp Street festival.
“We’ll have the tarantella dancers, wine tasting, food,” she said.
Cr Coltman, who chairs the council’s intercultural advisory committee, said there had also been an effort to boost the art side of the festival this year.
“There will be quite an art focus; one project we’re running with artists is making postcards on what it means to live in Ballarat,” she said.
The festival will kick off with the parade of cultures at the Town Hall at 11am and music at the festival will begin at midday.
Performers include Kavisha Mazzella, Kofi Kunkpe & Afro Diaspora, The Fighting Gunditjmara, Paris Inc. and the Ballarat Ska Union.
The Ballarat Italian Association will also run a traditional game of bocce.
The annual festival comes after recent race-related incidents in Ballarat and beyond have turned the spotlight to multicultural relations.
Cr Coltman said Ballarat had a strong record in embracing diversity, and highlighted the council’s work in the area.
“It’s about working together and we don’t do it in isolation, with organisations like Ballarat Regional Multicultural Council, the Centre for Multicultural Youth, and other agencies across the city,” she said.
Referencing the Bendigo protests and failed court challenged to the building of a mosque and Islamic community centre, Cr Coltman said it was clear Ballarat did not have the same problems.
The theme of this year’s Harmony Fest is ‘all of us’ and Cr Coltman said that spirit would extend to the upcoming community garden at Len T Frazer Reserve.
“We’ve been working on (that) with our multicultural garden,” she said.
“It’s about bringing people people to the whole development, and including the kids in the skate park, the kids that play basketball.”
The new multicultural ambassadors will also be introduced at the festival.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.