By Aphrodite Feros-Fooke
The city’s Christmas Festival was launched at Melbourne Town Hall on November 13.
The State Library will host the feature projection show, A Very Melbourne Night Before Christmas, written by Marieke Hardy and narrated by Lee Lin Chin.
The city centre will be decorated with 500,000 LED lights, 2000 big baubles, 20 giant nutcracker statues, four neon Christmas installations and a huge present box at Southbank.
Federation Square’s Christmas tree will stand at 16m tall and be decorated with 30,000 LED lights.
This year the City of Melbourne has introduced the Christmas Collective initiative.
“This year we have chosen to showcase our local talent by having businesses and groups share how they celebrate Christmas, which will provide a uniquely Melbourne experience for our visitors and locals,” Lord Mayor, Sally Capp said.
“People will be able to take part in Christmas cooking masterclasses, join a festive silent disco as it winds through the city and peruse pop-up markets in some of our iconic buildings and laneways.”
The chair of the City of Melbourne’s small businesses, retail and hospitality portfolio, Cr Susan Riley, said the festive season was vital for the business community.
“December is the most important period for our retail and hospitality businesses and the increased number of city visitors coming to enjoy our Christmas Festival generates an economic uplift of $73 million,” she said.
“By supporting our retailers and community groups through funding the Christmas Collective, we aim to show off all that’s on offer here in Melbourne and promote our city’s hidden gems.”
She said the council was expecting the Christmas Festival program to attract record numbers into the city centre.
Christmas projections at State Library, Melbourne Town Hall and Princes Bridge, November 29 to December 25;
Santa’s House at Federation Square, November 30 to December 21;
Christmas Compass Virtual Reality (VR) at Melbourne Town Hall Visitor Hub, November 30 to December 24;
Gingerbread Village by Epicure at Level 1 St Collins Lane November 30 to December 24; and
Gravy Day Sing-along at Federation Square, December 21.
For more information on the City of Melbourne Christmas Festival 2019, visit www.melbourne.vic.gov.au/christmas