I'm a Victorian freelance writer & photographer living in the Macedon Ranges north of Melbourne.
The focus for Ballarat Heritage Weekend 2019 to be held on Saturday and Sunday 25th & 26th May is storytelling and experience.
Ballarat Heritage Weekend will feature fire as a major theme with fire displays providing a backdrop for entertainment and storytelling. Photo: www.pexels.com
Signature events this year include town Hall After Dark Tours, Food in Focus, Milk Bar & Co, The Tea Trolley, Coffee Exchange by Mr Black, Ballarat's Beard & Stache Competition and the celebrated Tweed Ride.
There'll be entertainment by the likes of Swing Katz and magician Adam Mada and of course, a great range of local food and wine.
Steam trains will operate 45 minute round trips from Ballarat's historic railway station and Cobb & Co Carriages will be running short rides around the central city.
Historic Lydiard Street and the Mining Exchange will be the focal point for a range of activities throughout the weekend. Photo: Copyright Ian Gill / Footloose Media
On Saturday evening, the city will be lit up by fires burning in a range of fire pits, barrels and other installations with featured fire displays and entertainment.
Armstrong Street North, Lydiard Street North and Alfred Deakin Place will feature storytellers giving vivid accounts of the history and heritage of Ballarat featuring fire as a medium for discussion.
The evening will see the off-street car park in Armstrong Street North transformed into a celebration of Aboriginal culture with fire pits, yarning circles, entertainment and a short film festival showcasing Aboriginal cultural heritage, shared history and social justice. Traditional custodian Tammy Gilson will be on hand to engage in discussions with interested visitors.
The evening gets underway from 5.30 PM and it's a FREE event.
Steam train rides will start and finish at Ballarat's historic railway station .....
..... and Cobb & Co coaches will tour the CBD. Photos: Copyright Ian Gill / Footloose Media
On both Saturday and Sunday, the Ballarat Mechanics' Institute will house an educational and interactive exhibition where visitors can immerse themselves in the history and heritage of Victoria's Aboriginal people and enjoy some bush tea and other authentic and unique culinary experiences courtesy of Saltbush Kitchen.
This event will take place in the Humffray Room on Level 1 of the Mechanics Institute between 10 AM and 5 PM on both days and is another FREE event.
Working in conjunction with Federation University Aboriginal Education Centre, Ballarat and District Aboriginal Cooperative and other engaged community groups, this display aims to share with you the stories from the Nation's First Peoples and their history and current day contributions within Ballarat and wider Victoria.
Ballarat Heritage Weekend is all about the city's history & heritage, local creativity, great chefs, winemakers & brewers and the finest produce this part of Victoria has to offer.
Getting There …..
Ballarat is 125-Kilometres north-west of Melbourne, just over a 90-minute drive via the National Highway M8.
Alternatively VLine operate regular fast and efficient rail services between Melbourne (Southern Cross) and Ballarat.
Get on up to historic Ballarat for the annual Heritage Weekend celebration on Saturday and Sunday 25th & 26th May. Photo: Copyright Ian Gill / Footloose Media