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Monday, 26 February 2018
Page: 1960

Ms CATHERINE KING (Ballarat) (16:13): While my electorate of Ballarat often cops unfair criticism from outsiders as being cold, the packed months of this summer have again proven the town and its surroundings to be exactly the opposite. Those who spent the festive period and summer in Ballarat and its surrounds, either as visitors or as locals, found no shortage of activities to take part in. For those who are into live music, there's been the weekly concerts in the botanic gardens by the lake, the Australian Jazz Convention, the 23rd Organs of the Ballarat Goldfields Festival and the rockabilly festival. Sports lovers have enjoyed the national cycling championships, based once again in the beautiful country town of Buninyong, where we saw the Australian national road cycling champion jersey presented to a new winner in Alex Edmondson. Art lovers have flocked to the Romancing the Skull exhibition at the fine-art gallery. For those after something a little bit different, they've been able to visit events such as the Ballarat Beer Festival, hosted at Lake Wendouree, or, for the first time in its history, the Kingston Rodeo, also held in Hepburn shire. Perhaps most excitingly, Ballarat is once more looking forward to holding the all-night celebration of the White Knight festival, thanks to the state government, on 17 March. I'm sure that that event will again attract tens of thousands of people into my beautiful home town of Ballarat. All of the festivals and events, including many others which I don't have time to mention here, go to making my city a vibrant place to visit, and I'd welcome many visitors from this place.