A Christmas tree maze, Aussie beach-style Santa photos and lunchtime concerts mark the official start of Christmas in Newcastle today.
The free family-friendly festivities are part of the City of Newcastle’s A Very Newy Christmas campaign aimed at attracting more visitors to the CBD this Christmas.
Throughout the month of December the city’s Civic Park, Darby Street and Hunter Street Mall and Civic Theatre will be home to what City of Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes hopes will be some Christmas cheer.
Festivities will begin with the launch of A-Mazing Christmas tree display in Civic Park at 1pm today (Friday 4 December).
The maze, consisting of 120 full-sized Christmas trees, will then be lit up in the evenings using solar-powered lights.
“By activating the City Centre and Darby Street this Christmas, our goal is to safely attract people back to these areas and inject spending into local businesses, particularly in the retail and hospitality sectors,” Cr Nelmes said.
“COVID-19 has caused major disruption to our City’s lively events calendar in 2020, with unprecedented economic and social impacts on our community.
“The Very Newy Christmas project is all about spreading much needed Christmas cheer to Novocastrians, whilst supporting our community and local businesses.”
Other free festive activities on offer include free Christmas photo spots at Darby Street or Hunter Street Mall and free lunchtime concerts at the Civic Theatre.
A dedicated hashtag (#newychristmas) has been created to encourage visitors to help promote the event.