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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 01 Hansard (Thursday, 11 February 2010) . . Page.. 326 ..

about multiculturalism and allowed us to more tightly manage the budget for the event.

Preliminary estimates suggest that over 130,000 people attended the three days of the event. There were 250 stalls, over 100 performances and over 100 volunteers. Early indications are that the festival has come in on budget. I will be in a position to confirm this after all invoices have been received in the next little while. These are all positive outcomes of the 2010 National Multicultural Festival.

Another great outcome of the festival is that ACT Policing reported the event to be incident free. Given the large number of participants and audience and the duration of the event, this is indeed a tremendous outcome. I congratulate the ACT community for making our event safe for everyone.

I am grateful to the people who transformed the Canberra city centre into such a wonderful showcase of art, culture and tradition. The Civic triangle, with three stages, was jam-packed with colour and energy for the whole weekend. Those that participated in and attended this year’s festival demonstrated that multiculturalism is indeed woven into the fabric of our society. As the Canberra Times notes today, the festival provides an opportunity particularly for a younger generation of Canberrans to keep their culture and traditions alive.

The festival shines a light on the rights of individuals to preserve, express and enjoy their cultural heritage and traditions, upholding the values of respect and diversity. The event also provides Canberrans with an opportunity to share cultures through food, song and dance and through the diplomatic corps.

A pleasing outcome from last weekend’s event was the opportunity that it provided to over 100 volunteers to experience different tasks in a community event setting. The flip side of this, of course, is that we are able to appreciate their efforts in providing a wonderful community service and their commitment and support.

Another outcome of the festival last week is the loyal support of our sponsors who, through thick and thin, have provided financial and in-kind assistance to ensure that events like this continue each year.

There is no doubt that the 2010 National Multicultural Festival was a success on a number of levels, thanks to the efforts of organisers, community groups, the diplomatic missions and the sponsors, and I look forward to return to the Assembly in the near future to provide further information about the outcomes of the 2010 National Multicultural Festival when the results from the survey that was undertaken during the

event are known.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Hargreaves, a supplementary?

MR HARGREAVES: Thank you very much, Mr Speaker. Can the minister inform the Assembly of any feedback received from stallholders and community groups about the festival and also which was more popular—solo guitar events or Bollywood dancing?

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