Tens Of Thousands Flock To Ballarat Begonia Festival

Ballarat shone brilliantly during another dazzling Ballarat Begonia Festival at the weekend.

Despite unseasonably hot conditions, more than 44,000 people are estimated to have attended the three-day festival.

A full line-up of on-stage entertainment in the Ballarat Botanical Gardens, a wide array of food and drink, countless family activities, the stunning Begonia display and of course the PowerFM Begonia Festival Parade were among the highlights to enthrall the masses of people over the Labour Day long weekend.

The full economic impact of this flagship event, delivered by the City of Ballarat, will take several weeks to calculate, however initial assessments show the event generated an economic impact of $3 million, injected directly into the local economy. This is boosted by an additional $2.3 million in media value generated for Ballarat by the event.

Events in Ballarat contribute considerably to the city’s economy, establish the city as a tourist destination, support Ballarat’s liveability and are integral to building community pride.

In total, events funded or delivered by the City of Ballarat contributed more than $44 million to the Ballarat economy in the 2022/23 financial year.

City of Ballarat Mayor, Cr Des Hudson said the Begonia Festival remained one of the treasures on the Ballarat events calendar and had gone from strength to strength in recent years.

“Ballarat absolutely shines every Labour Day long weekend for the Begonia Festival and this year was no exception,” he said.

“The festival is an enormous contributor to the Ballarat economy and provides a huge boost to local business, but it also instills an enormous amount of civic pride.

“We acknowledge the crowds were slightly lower than previous years mainly due to the extreme heat, but we still consider it to be a terrific turnout.”

If you missed the chance to visit the Conservatory and view the Begonias at the weekend, you need not worry. The Conservatory remains open every day from 9am to 4.30pm, with the Begonias on display until the end of Easter and entry is free.

Attention will now turn to other upcoming major events in Ballarat in the coming months, including the Ballarat Heritage Festival in May and the Ballarat Winter Festival in July.

Begonia Festival 2024 fast facts

How many attended the festival: 44,000

How many viewed the Begonia display in the Conservatory: 11,750

How many kids navigated the Giant Maze: 11,000

How many craft Begonias were made at the Art Gallery stall: 1,500

How many parade entries: 28

How many local performer groups: 16

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Source: nationaltribune.com.au

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