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Our favourite accessible events this long weekend!

Photo Credit: Sydney Festival / Victor Frankowski

Just in time for the long weekend, we’ve put together some of our favourite accessible events around the country. These events are some great opportunities to get out and about with your family, whether you’d like to go soak up some culture, some sun or history!

New South Wales

The Vigil at Barangaroo

The Vigil returns to Barangaroo Reserve, offering an opportunity to gather together and experience a night of performance and reflection on the eve of Australia Day.

It’s a time to consider Australia’s Indigenous heritage, as well as its colonial institutions and contemporary multicultural migration, from dusk on 25 January until dawn on 26 January.Hear live music and guests alongside choral and poetry performances, and experience the resilience, beauty and joy of First Nations culture. The event is open to all people, and people of all cultures are encouraged to take part. Click here to learn more.

Accessibility features: Wheelchair access, Auslan Interpreter

When: 8pm, January 25-6am, January 26

Where: Barangaroo Reserve, Hickson Road, Barangaroo, Sydney

Installation view of the Japan Supernatural exhibition at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney. Photo: AGNSW.

Japan Supernatural at the Art Gallery of NSW

Beat the heat this long weekend and head to the air conditioned art gallery! Until the 8th of March 2020, Japan Supernatural will be featured at the Art Gallery of NSW. Featuring over 180 works by Japanese  artists past and present, the exhibits contain figures from Japanese folklore, mischievous shapeshifters and ghouls and goblins. The exhibit includes works by renowned contemporary Japanese artist Takashi Murakami, known for working with Kanye West, Billie Eilish and Pharrell, among many others. This exhibit is sure to be popular with adults and children alike – with a range of colourful and spooky artwork for all audiences! Click here to learn more.

Accessibility features: Auslan interpreted, wheelchair access

When:  2 Nov 2019 – 8 Mar 2020

Where: Art Gallery of NSW, Art Gallery Road, The Domain, Sydney

Australia Day @ The House

On January 26, the Government House will be open to the public and hosting an array of activities and live entertainment, as well as stalls and food options. Home to rich Australian history, the Government House is recognisable for its magnificent State Rooms, historic works of art and regal furnishings. The Governor of New South Wales, Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AO QC, said “Dennis and I invite you to come and enjoy this special day at the House. The beautiful redesigned Eastern Terrace garden will be starting to bloom, and our friendly guides will show you around.”

Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, Muscular Dystrophy NSW, The Society of Australian Genealogists, and St John Ambulance NSW are among the organisations showcasing their work throughout the day. A donation can be made to support these organisations.So, why not bring the family along, have a picnic on the green and soak up the Harbour views? Learn more about this event here and read more about accessibility here.

Accessibility features: Wheelchair accessible, accessible for people with low vision

When: House open from 9.30am-5.30pm, January 26

Where: Government House, Macquarie Street, Sydney


Australia Day Parade

As part of Australia Day tradition, Melbourne will be holding the Australia Day Parade on January 26. The Parade is expected to attract over 12,000 spectators who will watch on as 90 community and cultural groups make their way through the Melbourne CBD. The Parade will kick off at 11am, so there’s plenty of time to get in early and grab a great spot!

Accessibility features: Wheelchair access, alternative access

When: 11:00-12:00pm, January 26

Where: Corner of Swanston Street & Bourke Street, Melbourne

The Australian Open

Each year, the Australian Open never fails to bring international communities and the Victorian community together to celebrate tennis. As usual, this year’s tournament will wind up near Australia Day, with the final matches being played on Feb 2. Many final matches have already sold out, however, there are plenty of Ground Passes up for grabs. If you’d like to make a special needs booking, click here for more information or here for the accessibility map.

Accessibility features: Wheelchair access, hearing loop facilities, seating for people with vision impairments, limited mobility and those requiring shaded areas.

When: Ends Feb 2 

Where: Melbourne Park, Melbourne

Civilisation: The Way we Live Now – National Gallery of Victoria

Civilization: The Way We Live Now is an international photography exhibition of monumental scale, featuring the work of over 100 contemporary photographers from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Australia and Europe with over 200 original photographs being exhibited. With the exhibit closing on the 2nd of February – this long weekend is a great opportunity to check it out in the air conditioned comfort of the National Gallery of Victoria! Click here to learn more!

Accessibility features: Wheelchair access, Auslan interpreters

When: 10am-5pm daily, ends February 2. 

Where: National Gallery of Victoria, Federation Square, Swanston Street and Flinders Street, Melbourne


Australia Day at South Bank

Enjoy free live music in the spectacular setting of River Quay at Sunday Social on the Green. The event offers punters sweeping city and river views, while delighting in quintessential Australia Day spreads and Brisbane’s iconic alfresco climate. Or, indulge in delicious takeaway hampers from River Quay Fish, The Jetty, Popolo and Aquitaine.

Performances are taking place from 2pm to 6pm, and  include Birdman Randy and The Ivory Street Preachers as well as special guest DJs with smooth sounds and upbeat anthems.Complete your experience with a colourful Australia Day fireworks display at 7.30pm. For premium viewing points head to the Clem Jones Promenade, the Cultural Forecourt or remain at River Quay. Click here for more info

Accessibility features: Wheelchair access.

When: 2:00pm – 7:40pm, January 26th. 

Where: South Bank Parklands

The Queensland Museum

The Queensland Museum is a museum of natural history, cultural heritage and science, telling the history of Queensland with a number of thought provoking exhibits. This year, the museum is open on both the Saturday and is also open on the Monday public holiday. The younger members of your family  will enjoy the variety of exhibitions on show – and you will all enjoy the air conditioning! Even better, most of the exhibits are totally free! Click here to learn more.

Accessibility features: Wheelchair access, adaptive technologies. 

When: Open daily from 9:30am -5pm 

Where: Corner of Grey and Melbourne Streets, South Bank, South Brisbane

Western Australia

Birak Concert

Celebrating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island cultures, the annual Birak Concert boasts a stellar line up of indigenous entertainment.  The event will kick off at 3:00pm and run through to 7:30pm and is the perfect opportunity for all Australians to celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture.  In addition to the jam-packed stage schedule there will be inflatable amusements, workshops, community stalls, and the Elders Marquee.

Be sure to bring your hat and sunscreen – it’s set to be a hot day!

Accessibility features: Wheelchair access

When: 3:00pm-7:30pm, 26 January. 

Where: Cnr Barrack Street and Riverside Drive, Perth

City of Perth Australia Day Fireworks

Take your family down to the Perth foreshore this year for some quality family entertainment, at the City of Perth Australia Day fireworks. The event this year will feature carnival rides, amusements, markets and a water playground. As part of this year’s celebration, there’ll be fundraising for the Australian bushfires, to help raise money and awareness for those affected by the fires.

Accessibility features: Wheelchair accessible 

When: 3:00pm- 10:00pm, 26 January

Where: Perth Foreshore

Accessible beaches around Australia

With this weekend set to be a hot one, it’s a perfect opportunity to head to the beach! Click here to read about the best accessible beaches all around Australia

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