The New Year's Eve fireworks in Melbourne and Sydney are major events, not just for Australians, but internationally, as due to our timezone, they are often the first Midnight Fireworks celebrations to signify January 1st. As Europe, Asia and America countdown to midnight, images from Melbourne and Sydney are broadcast worldwide. As a result, each year Melbourne and Sydney try to out do one another; Melbourne's fireworks are often located in the city centre, while the Harbour Bridge (with a 'Bridge Effect' theme) is the centrepiece of Sydney's fireworks display each year.
The countdown to 2012 will see the city of Melbourne turn gold.
There are four free main precincts set up in and around Melbourne on Saturday, December 31st, 2011.
The Alexandra Gardens precinct will have three stages; Ballarat stage: Engineers lawn, Sovereign Hill stage: Star lawn and Castlemaine stage: Palms lawn. At this location expect live music performances from The Jazzmanics, Kim Salmon, The Statics, The Fauves and Jali Buba Kuyateh.
The Birrarung Marr precinct will have one stage; Bendigo stage: Middle terrace. Performing at this location will be Ron Peno, Ronson Hangup and Ashley Naylor. At the Birrarung Marr precinct there will also be a big screen broadcasting a live telecast of the Channel Seven New Year's Eve special.
Waterfront City, Docklands will have one stage also; Waterfront City main stage. At this location there will be children's entertainment, including Dora the Explorer, live music from Three's Company and DJ Stick Mareebo and the Australian tribute show Man in the Mirror - Reflections of Michael Jackson.
Waterfront City, Docklands is perhaps the most family friendly venue, along with the Family precinct at Yarra Park. At this location, the Eureka stage will feature Denise Scott, Bob Evans and a range of family entertainment, including ZingZillas, Batacuda, Wickid Force and much more.
Also both Waterfront City, Docklands and the Family precinct at Yarra Park will have a Family Fireworks Show at 9:30pm.
And finally, the Federation Square main stage will feature the likes of D² Drumline, Deline Briscoe and Chunky Jam, a popular cover band.
Each of these sites are prime viewing spots for the Midnight rooftop fireworks spectacular. Please note each of these sites are alcohol-free zones and public transport is free from 6pm on Saturday, December 31st, 2011.
For further information on any of the above events, please see here.