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Celebrate 50 years: Royal National Park

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by Vanessa (subscribe)
WeekendNotes Chief Editor / Chief Writer / PR & Communications.
A free day of family fun for everyone

On Sunday 8th October, 2017, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) invites you to celebrate its 50th anniversary with a FREE day of family-fun at the oldest national park in the state, Royal National Park.

Register now for this amazing day of live performances and entertainment, interactive and sensory displays of flora and fauna, food and drink, and plenty of educational workshops for kids - including wildlife and bugs, Aboriginal culture, history and heritage!

Held at Ironbark Flats in Audley, Royal National Park from 10am to 4pm, this marks the 50th anniversary of NPWS which was established in 1967. Come along with the whole family and celebrate the diverse national parks in NSW, learn more about the many activities you can experience in national parks, and get to know the people who protect and conserve our parks all year round.

Some of the event highlights include:

Kids' activities

  • Visit the NPWS vehicles display. The kids can see some NPWS vehicles up close. There'll be helicopters, marine mammal rescue boats, fire utes and Rural Fire Service fire trucks.

  • Make time for WilderQuest Campfire. It's an amazing 360 virtual reality Aboriginal storytelling experience. Visit beautiful NSW national parks and listen to Aboriginal rangers telling traditional stories, all without leaving your seat.

  • Add your mark to a large Aboriginal painting created throughout the day.

  • Learn how to make your own boomerang.

  • Get involved in Aboriginal storytelling, traditional dance, art and didgeridoo workshops.

  • Bring the children to our family-focused wildlife area. They'll get a closer look at some native wildlife and insects.

  • Do the kids want to know about wildlife, national parks or what it's like to be an NPWS ranger? National parks rangers will be on hand to answer their questions.

    Live music

    Enjoy a mix of live music from artists including:

  • Blues-pop singer-songwriter Jordan Millar.

  • The Morrisons, who'll perform American-inspired bluegrass, country and folk style tunes.

  • The Sydney Southeast Symphonic Winds 2017 (a 100-piece student concert band).

  • Joy Yang, a classical and jazz pianist.

    Aboriginal culture

  • Listen to Auntie Julie Freeman tell a story handed down from her Dharawal grandmothers. It's about how the NSW south coast was created.

  • NPWS Aboriginal liaison officer Dean Kelly will share his culture, traditional artefacts and stories throughout the day.

    Dance and roving performances

    Keep an eye out for performances by:

  • The Warada Dancers, a La Perouse community-based dance group. The dancers are children from Matraville Soldiers Settlement School, Chifley PS and Matraville Sports High School.

  • The Muggera Dancers, who'll perform traditional and modern Aboriginal dance, joined by a song man and didgeridoo player.

  • Roving performers dressed as a flock of stunning native birds. They're graceful and a bit cheeky too!

    Art exhibitions

  • Visit a photo field celebrating the iconic imagery and stunning landscapes of NSW national parks.

  • View works by Margaret Senior (1917-1995), one of the most celebrated wildlife artists of her time.

  • Enjoy an interactive photo display looking back at NSW national parks over the past 50 years.

    NPWS workshops and tours

  • Take part in workshops and tours run by NPWS Discovery rangers. Find out about the history, conservation and cultural significance of Royal National Park.

    Love Parks Installation

  • Take a selfie or family photo with our 3D Love Parks installation in the main event area! Share the love by tagging us in your pic with the hashtag #50yearsNPWS or #NSWParks

    Sausage sizzle

  • There'll be a free lunchtime sausage sizzle (12pm-2pm).

    There will be free bus and tram shuttles running to and from Sutherland, Engadine, Loftus Train Stations and Bundeena to Ironbark Flats, and vehicle entry to all National Parks will be free on the day.

    There will also be a number of local anniversary events running across the state:

  • Roto House, Port Macquarie National Park

  • Cape Byron State Conservation Area

  • Fitzroy Fall Visitor Centre, Morton National Park

  • Yarrangobilly Caves, Kosciuszko National Park

  • Hill End Historic Site

  • Kinchega National Park

    For more information on all the events and to register your interest in coming along to the Royal National Park celebration, please visit Eventbrite.

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    When: Sunday 8 October 2017, 10am - 4pm
    Where: Ironbark Flat picnic area, Royal National Park
    Cost: FREE / Register your interest
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