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Sydney Events

There’s no place in the world like Sydney for events

Sydney is a sensational events capital. Its record for hosting large-scale events, including major sporting events such as the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games and the 2003 Rugby World Cup, is well known around the world. Sydney will host World Youth Day in 2008 and will welcome Pope Benedict XVI along with more than 100,000 youths who will follow a spectacular pilgrimage across Sydney. www.wyd2008.org In 2009, Sydney will host the World Masters Games, which is the biggest mass participation, multi-national, multi-sport festival in the world.  www.2009worldmasters.com

The city also hosts a glittering range of artistic, cultural, social and community festivals and events.

Here are some of Sydney’s annual event highlights:

Sydney Festival
Sydney Festival is the most prestigious arts and cultural festival in Australia. The month of January is a celebration of dance, theatre, visual arts, acrobatics, opera, mime, poetry and reading and music from the classics to hip hop. The festival showcases Australia’s finest talent alongside some of the most acclaimed international artists in the world today.

The Sydney Medibank International
The Sydney Medibank International is one of Australia’s top international tennis competitions, attracting a star studded field of world class tennis players every summer. Players to appear at the 2007 event include Lleyton Hewitt, James Blake, Rafael Nadal, Patty Schnyder, Justine Henin-Hardenne and Kim Clijsters, just to name a few.  www.medibankinternational.com.au

Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras
Established in 1978, the Sydney Mardi Gras is now one of the world’s biggest gay and lesbian events.  The month-long festival held each February includes film, theatre, visual and performing arts, tours, seminars and forums. It culminates in an extravagant and flamboyant parade with more than 140 floats and crowds topping half a million; this has become a celebration that defines Sydney. www.mardigras.org.au

A1GP World Cup of Motorsport
Sydney’s Eastern Creek International Raceway will host round seven of the AIGP World Cup of Motorsport’s 2006/07 season from 2 to 4 February 2007.  With three days of adrenalin-fuelled action planned, the Sydney A1GP will see a carnival atmosphere, with lots of entertainment for all. For more information, visit the A1GP website at www.a1gp.com

Chinese New Year
Sydney’s Chinese New Year celebrations are the biggest outside Asia and run for three weeks each January / February, attracting crowds to the street parade through the city centre and to the dragon boat races at Darling Harbour. It is one of the city’s most popular and colourful cultural events.  Highlights include the tours of the Sze Yup Temple in Glebe and Evergreen Taoist Church in Redfern, and the Chinatown markets. The Chinese garden of Friendship in Darling Harbour highlights the art of penjing, or Chinese bonsai, throughout the festivities. The Chinese New Year’s day falls on 18 February 2007, start of the Year of the Pig.

Cracker Comedy Festival
The Cracker Comedy Festival is quickly earning a reputation for being one of Australia’s largest celebrations of comedy. The festival was first held in 2005, with the bohemian inner city suburb of Newtown its base. The festival is held throughout March, presenting both Australian and international talent.

Sydney Royal Easter Show
The Sydney Royal Easter Show is a 14 day extravaganza showcasing everything from farm machinery, prize-winning animals and garden products to fashion, jewellery and pets. It also features more than 3000 entertainers and street performances, stage shows, dance, live music, comedy, poetry and large scale productions.

Autumn Racing Carnival
Held at Royal Randwick Racecourse, the Australian Jockey Club’s Autumn Racing Carnival is one of Australasia’s most popular racing carnivals and culminates with the Sydney Cup on 14 April 2007. For more information, visit www.ajc.org.au

Sydney Film Festival

The Sydney Film Festival is the biggest event on Sydney’s annual film calendar. The two-week celebration of film showcases the best of world cinema – feature films, documentaries, animations and short films.  Other events include a Gala Opening Night event and individual tickets are available for every session in the festival program. www.sydneyfilmfestival.org.au

Biennale of Sydney

This event is Australia’s largest and most exciting contemporary international visual arts festival and most of its events are free. The 2006 event received a record number of visits, with 315,000 people attending the three-month event which started in June. More than 85 artists from 44 countries had their work exhibited in 16 venues across the city. www.biennaleofsydney.com.au

Spring Racing Carnival
Sydney’s racing scene gallops into spring with premier events at Rosehill Gardens and Royal Randwick. Key events include the $1million Golden Rose Day Cup and the Mad about the Hat Day. For more information on Rosehill Gardens go to www.theraces.com.au or for Royal Randwick see www.ajc.com.au

Sculpture by the Sea
This event is Australia’s largest annual outdoor exhibition of contemporary sculpture.  The free event is staged along Sydney’s spectacular Bondi to Tamarama coastal walk.  Each year the event, which attracts over 300,000 visitors, exhibits approximately 100 works by Australian and overseas artists.

Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race
Starting on Boxing Day (26 December) each year, Australia’s premier yacht racing event – the annual Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race sees competition from around the world sail out from Sydney Harbour heads and south along the coast to Tasmania. www.rolexsydneyhobart.com

There’s no place in the world like Sydney.

For more information, see www.visitnsw.com.au

For further information, contact:

Kylie Robertson                                  Irene Morgan
Robertson Solutions                         Tourism  NSW
Cell: 917-213-1773                            Tel: 310 641 1622/
Kylie@robertsonsolutions.com          tourismnswla@earthlink.net 

About the author
Kylie Robertson & Irene Morgan wrote this article

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