WA Day Festival 2022: Perth event attracts thousands of families to Burswood

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Briana FioreThe West Australian
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Famous for its great weather, long coastline and patriotic Premier, WA is being celebrated by tens of thousands who say they wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.
Camera IconFamous for its great weather, long coastline and patriotic Premier, WA is being celebrated by tens of thousands who say they wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. Credit: The West Australian

It may be the most isolated city in the world but the patriotism in Perth was strong on Monday as tens of thousands of people united to celebrate WA Day.

The public holiday and annual festival held at Burswood Park recognises all West Aussies, including First Nations people, early European settlers and all those who call the great State their home.

Kicking off at noon in ideal weather conditions, the free carnival housed an array of activities for children, adults and all those in between.

PerthNow’s carnival zone was abuzz with young ones enjoying the bumper cars and teapot rides — which didn’t cost their parents a cent.

Pictures of people at WA Day event in Burswood, Perth.
Camera IconPictures of people at WA Day event in Burswood, Perth. Credit: Ross Swanborough/The West Australian
Pictures of Kieran, Sam, Jayden and Anna Parker with their dog Isky.
Camera IconPictures of Kieran, Sam, Jayden and Anna Parker with their dog Isky. Credit: Ross Swanborough/The West Australian

COVID-19 restrictions put a dent in the social calendars of many over the past two years, so it was one of the first big family-friendly festivals since the opening of WA’s borders.

Nine-year-old Philip Manurung said he loved WA because it was the biggest State in Australia.

“It’s a pretty lucky State,” Philip told The West while watching a magician perform magic tricks on stage.

“I also like swimming at City Beach.”

Jonah Emmerton-Smith, 9, who was donning purple following Fremantle’s weekend win, said his favourite thing about WA was the Dockers.

“My favourite players are Michael Walters and Nat Fyfe,” Jonah said.

Jonah (9) and Hermione (8) Emerson-Smith.
Camera IconJonah (9) and Hermione (8) Emerson-Smith. Credit: Ross Swanborough/The West Australian
Julie Emerson with Hermione (8), Jonah (9), Kasharla (13) and Ellie Scoulidis (13).
Camera IconJulie Emerson with Hermione (8), Jonah (9), Kasharla (13) and Ellie Scoulidis (13). Credit: Ross Swanborough/The West Australian

And seven-year-old Sky Perdido said she was hanging out for the drone show.

People also brought their pets to the big day out, with dogs and a caged bird spotted amongst the crowd.

Paying homage to traditional landowners, the festival also had an immersive Whadjuk Dreaming experience in the BHP family zone.

There were also big screens, food vans and a licensed zone for those over 18.

Celebrate WA chair Michael Anghie said the event was really important as WA emerges from COVID-19.

“There’s a lot of people who have gone through tough times and a lot of the vendors here, the people who set up the stages, the bands — all of those people have been through hard times,” Mr Anghie said.

“So it’s a real opportunity to celebrate. We want to make it accessible to everyone. We’re creating work and hopefully supporting the economy.”

Chloe (4), Alex (3) and Isabel (7) with their mother Rachael Neelemaut.
Camera IconChloe (4), Alex (3) and Isabel (7) with their mother Rachael Neelemaut. Credit: Ross Swanborough/The West Australian
 Swandi, Lince Manurung with Lional (12), Philip (9) and Lily (6).
Camera Icon Swandi, Lince Manurung with Lional (12), Philip (9) and Lily (6). Credit: Ross Swanborough/The West Australian

Mr Anghie said he was delighted with the “perfect weather”.

WA’s biggest ever drone light show is scheduled to start at 6.45 and will last half-an-hour.

There will be live music throughout the day, including Jedediah, Eskimo Joe and Birds of Tokyo.

People are encouraged to use public transport and plan their journey as parking is limited.

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