Community event to celebrate grand opening of new garden

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The new $4.6 million Garden for the Future at Bendigo Botanic Gardens White Hills will be officially opened by Greater Bendigo Mayor Cr Margaret O’Rourke this coming Sunday April 22 with a free community event featuring local bands, food trucks, barbecue, displays, tours and kids activities from 10am to 2pm.

Cr Margaret O’Rourke said everyone is welcome to come along to the Garden for the Future grand opening.

“We thought there was no better way to celebrate the opening than to hold a community event that will really showcase the types of events that will be able to take place at the new garden,” Cr O’Rourke said.

“Local bands Bill Barber, Erica Hawkey Band, Sherri Parry and the Funk Junkies will play on the day while kids entertainment will include stilt walkers, face painting, balloon twisting and an Australian native wildlife display. There will also be a selection of food trucks and a barbecue.

“The Garden for the Future is the biggest change to occur at the Bendigo Botanic Gardens White Hills since it was established in 1857. The new garden provides an exceptional backdrop for outdoor events, informal recreation activities, gatherings, picnics, educational programs and horticultural research and high quality cultural, recreational and educational experiences.

“The new garden will be a great place for people wanting to check out a range of plants they may be interested in planting in their own gardens. I’m excited to watch this new garden continue to develop and grow over the coming years.”

Over 4,700 square metres of turf lawn and 30,000 trees and shrubs have been planted at the site. There is also over 40 small picnic lawns and a large fun and fantasy lawn which doubles as an event space. In addition there are a number of semi-intimate gathering spaces for functions, as well as a promenade that can be used for markets and other events.

The new garden also features a new outreach shelter complete with toilet facilities. The outreach shelter is the social hub of the garden able to cater to a range of events from musical and theatrical performances through to moonlight cinemas. The shelter can also be used as an outdoor classroom space to learn about horticulture and sustainability.

The $4.6M stage one of the project is funded by a $3.56 million contribution from the City of Greater Bendigo, $1M from the State Government, $20,000 from the Friends of Bendigo Botanic Gardens and $20,000 from the Bendigo Northern District Community Enterprise.

Parking will be available off Kennewell Street adjacent to the White Hills Football Oval on the opening day.

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