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End of year celebrations soar to new heights in Newcastle


Novocastrians are in for a real treat when they say goodbye to 2022, with dazzling fireworks and aerobatic manoeuvres set to bring in the New Year.

For the first time, City of Newcastle’s (CN) annual celebrations will include a high-octane display of piloting prowess by Paul Bennet Airshows.

Gravity-defying solo stunts and precision formation flying should thrill the crowds during the afternoon, culminating in the Australian debut of a new pyrotechnics display fired from the side of a Cessna 185 Skywagon.

Paul Bennet in his Wolf Pitts Pro, which he will fly as part of the New Year’s eve celebrations. Photo: Tim Geluk.

This will be followed by the traditional 9pm fireworks show over the harbour, to be launched from Horseshoe Beach for an improved viewing experience.

The festivities begin from 4pm on 31 December, with the Queens Wharf precinct being transformed into an inclusive, interactive multi-sensory zone with entertainment and activities.

Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said New Year’s Eve was the perfect time to come together in celebration.

“The past 12 months have demonstrated the enduring resilience and strength of spirit embedded within our community as we have worked together to respond to these uncertain times,” she stated.

“The city deserves the chance to celebrate what we have achieved this year and everything we’re looking forward to in 2023.

“And, there’s no better place to do that than along our beautiful foreshore.

“This year we’re taking our celebrations to new heights, adding a thrilling aerobatics show and high-flying pyrotechnics display to our family-friendly entertainment options and much-loved fireworks.

“Our popular VIP sensory zone will provide a safe and whimsical space for people with disability and their families, while residents can experience our city’s connection to local Indigenous culture with traditional arts and crafts workshops, dance demonstrations, a hands-on ochre art installation and First Nations body painting.”

A self-guided sensory-based art walk will also be set up along Newcastle Foreshore featuring installations and sculpture by students and graduates from the University of Newcastle, while a host of mouth-watering food vendors, three pop-up DJ stations and a kids’ zone will help deliver a New Year’s Eve event for all members of the community.

Meanwhile, Maitland is also planning a big evening at Riverside at The Levee on 31 December.

From 5pm, the family-friendly event will offer free amusements, face painting, music, activities and a disco playing all the hits from 2022.

Food, beverage and dessert stalls are expected to tempt the tastebuds, too.

A spectacular fireworks display will then light up the sky from 9pm.

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