It’s been a long time in the planning, but a post-Dunns Road fire celebration is finally coming to the Adelong Showground this Saturday, June 12, complete with free food, live entertainment and fireworks.
The entire Snowy Valleys are invited, and attendees are encouraged to wear their ugliest jumpers to keep warm and feel a little festive.
Sponsored by the NSW Department of Primary Industries, the event was supposed to be held close to 18 months ago, as a way to connect locals and honour fire fighters after the stress of the fires. Organiser Will Reynolds said the DPI has been ‘great’, allowing the town to hold onto the grant until Covid restrictions eased enough to allow the town to have a real party.
“The whole evening’s about socialising,” said Mr Reynolds, “[It was originally supposed to be] a gather-up of all the local community to get them talking and gather them together after a catastrophic event.”
Mr Reynolds said that while the event is being run through the Rural Resilience program (with additional public and private sponsors joining the team since the original plan was put forth), he’s looking forward rather than backwards at the fire.
“I try not to dwell too much anymore on the Dunns Road side of things,” he said.
“People still are coming to terms with it, but it’s a good chance to move on. To me I’m looking at it as more of this year’s version of the Adelong Show… While it’s in the resilience programs and mental health side of things, I think that we need to be doing this anyway to get together regardless of any incidents or major events that have happened.”
Thanks to the long list of sponsors, the entire evening will be free for attendees and Mr Reynolds said anyone from across the Snowy Valleys is welcome to attend.
“The affected area was Adelong, Batlow, Tumbarumba, but it was the whole area that helped out,” he said.
“The initial thing was more about getting people together, but also to say thank you to the guys and girls that did their best to help us out.”
For the kids there will be jumping castles, rides and face painting, with the option of a sausage sandwich if the gravy rolls aren’t to their liking.
Live music will start at 6pm with Amber Laurence, followed by fireworks at 7.30pm and capped off with a show from Social Hand Grenade.
Gates will open at 3pm, with “plenty of heaters and drum fires” to encourage socialising on the winter afternoon.
“All the generosity [has been great], we’ve even had some private donations as well from local businesses,” said Mr Reynolds. “It’s turned the event from just a gathering to now an event that is all inclusive for every single person.”
RSVPs are required for catering purposes. Although the deadline has passed, Mr Reynolds encouraged people to still RSVP through the website (https://events.humanitix.com/dunns-road-family-day) or to get in touch with him at 0427 151 699.