Thousands attend inaugural Bridging Cultures Festival
JUST like Logan City’s diversity, the sun shone through brooding rain clouds and brightly upon Access and BEMAC’s Harmony Day event on March 24. The inaugural Bridging Cultures Festival, held at Mabel Park State School to highlight and celebrate the cultural diversity of Logan City, which is home to 217 of the 300 nationalities that have settled in Australia, saw between 4000 and 5000 people attend over the course of the day.
The free family festival was held in partnership between Access, the Queensland State Government, Australian Council for the Arts, Logan City Council, BEMAC and Arts Queensland, and featured global food stalls, free rides and activities for children, face painting, a petting zoo, prizes fireworks and some of south-east Queensland’s finest music acts, including Jesswar, Logan City’s own Osiris and Bullhorn.
Access CEO Gail Ker OAM said the Bridging Cultures Festival was about bridging cultures and promoting a city rooted in unity, belonging and respect.
“From the oldest continuous culture of our first Australians to our newest arrivals from around the world, Logan’s cultural diversity is one of our greatest strengths and is at the heart of who we are,” Ms Ker said.
Federal Member for Rankin Jim Chalmers, Logan City Mayor Luke Smith and councillors Laurie Koranski, Steve Swenson and Russell Lutton were among dignitaries that attended the festival.
BEMAC General Manager Leanne Tu’ipulotu said as Queensland’s most dynamic producer and presenter of multicultural artists it had been a pleasure to get out from under the bridge and partner with Access to bring a repertoire of high calibre musicians to Logan City.
“Logan is one of the most culturally diverse cities in Queensland and home to a significant percentage of refugees and new migrants,” she said.
“We were thrilled at the opportunity for BEMAC to extend through music and dance, a hand of friendship and welcoming to not only Logan’s newest arrivals, but all residents of this city that so exemplifies the tenets of Harmony Day.”