Crowd favourite events to boost city numbers in Docklands
The City of Melbourne has confirmed that it will help stage and deliver 48 events in 2023.
While many favourites will return, a number of new events will be taking centre stage as part of the council’s Event Partnership Program, and Docklands is confirmed to have two major exciting events.
Selected as 2023 recipients are VEE Agency Pty Ltd for its Uniquely Melbourne event – a floating entertainment experience in Docklands – and The District Docklands for its District Live: Open-Air Series.
A much-anticipated event, District Live will include outdoor live music and entertainment throughout the month of January, to help showcase emerging and established local artists from Melbourne and regional Victoria.
“We’re thrilled to deliver District Live; a free, open-air event series running every Saturday in January,” The District Docklands events and partnerships manager Jade Ogden said.
“This will be a fantastic opportunity to celebrate summer and reconnect with family and friends, all against the backdrop of local live music, entertainment, pop-up food and drink, activities for kids and so much more.”
“We look forward to working closely with the City of Melbourne to provide this accessible event at The District Docklands, further cementing Melbourne as the events capital of Australia.”
The Event Partnership Program provides $2.5 million each year to jam-pack the city’s calendar and add to its vibrancy, and more than $1.4 million, with an additional $430,000 in-kind support, has already been allotted.
“Melbourne puts on a show like no other – our stellar events calendar is one of our biggest assets – and a huge part of what draws people into the city,” Lord Mayor Sally Capp said.
“We’re proud to support much-loved events such as Lunar New Year, the Night Noodle Markets and the NGV Kids Summer Festival, as well as six exciting, never-before-seen experiences.”
The lining up of events has been the City of Melbourne’s greatest asset of late when it comes to helping increase city visitation numbers.
After conducting and commissioning an independent survey to look into visitor number growth, the council found a 45 per cent increase of visitors from the data collected in the third quarter of 2021.
A positive aspect of the survey was also reflected through 90 per cent of people who were interviewed saying they would consider using the city for leisure, over and above outer city districts and regions.
“In September, pedestrian activity near Town Hall exceeded pre-pandemic levels nearly every day of the month – and we expect this spectacular line-up of events will drive further visitation to the city,” Cr Capp said.
“We know that events are the number one driver of trips to Melbourne, attracting 30 million visits and boosting our local economy by $52 million. That’s why we dedicated $25 million to events in our 2022-23 Council Budget.”
Among the events already allocated for 2023 outside of Docklands are the day-long Taste of Portugal Festival, a magnificent Lunar New Year celebration featuring lion and dragon dancing, live performances and street food in Chinatown, and Holi Festival.
International students making Melbourne their home will also be introduced to the city and everything it has to offer through Melbourne International Student Week.
Not in a rush to bypass through to next year, special attention has also been put into planning a Christmas Festival extravaganza, with more details to come from the council in mid-November. •