Celebrating our heritage

OVER the course of April local residents will be given the chance to learn a bit about the place they call home.

Queanbeyan was declared a township in 1838 and the Queanbeyan Heritage Festival, which kicked off last night at the City Library, will celebrate its rich history and culture.

The Picnic in the Past at Queanbeyan Park is one of the first free events to be held at this year's Heritage Festival. This Sunday April 6 from 10.30am visitors will be given the chance to enjoy a picnic and learn about this area which is almost as old as Queanbeyan itself. Poet and musician John Warner will also offer some entertainment.

President of the Queanbeyan and District Historical Museum Society John McGlynn is looking forward to the Post Haste Exhibition set to launch on April 12. It traces the history of local postal services all the way back to when the Queanbeyan Post Office opened in 1836.

He said learning about the history of the town you live in is very important.

"I think it's important to understand how much has changed over the years," he said.

"For example in these days you get news and information instantly and from across the globe, but back then it took months to learn news from overseas. "

The Mysterious Queanbeyan by Moonlight is another leg of the Festival sure to delight. Author Nichole Overall will guide a tour through the town and even visit one of the oldest cemeteries in the region. She will share tales of mystery, tragedy, the unusual and the extraordinary. Tickets cost $55 for adults and $45 for children/concessions/National Trust members. Family rates are also available but bookings are essential. Email qbn@qbncityofchampions.com.au or call 0413 671 123.

There will also be an interesting bush adventure held at Bicentennial Park on April 13, museum open days, Council Heritage Awards on April 12 and a special exhibition called 'On the Street Where You Live: Then and Now'. It's a display of photos at the Queanbeyan City Library taken of various streets and houses over the years. Residents are encouraged to visit anytime throughout April to discover if any shots are of their street and, if so, see what has changed.

Mr McGlynn said Queanbeyan is something to be celebrated.

"People need to appreciate Queanbeyan and how things have happened over the years, it's a great town with a lot to offer….this festival shows that."

The Queanbeyan Heritage Festival runs from April 3-30 and for more information call John McGlynn on 6297 2730.

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