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Glen Innes community come together for NAIDOC Week celebration

In acknowledgement of NAIDOC Week Glen Innes took part in a celebration last week as part of the First Nations Festival.

At the launch of the First Nations Festival on Friday, November 13, members of the community gathered at Town Hall to celebrate Aboriginal heritage and culture in Glen Innes.

The event was originally planned to be conducted in Town Square, but was forced indoors due to ongoing rain.

The event was a celebration of Aboriginal culture featuring performances and traditional ceremonies.

A series of activities took place throughout the event including, a smoking ceremony by Allan Weatherall, dances by local children led by Allan Weatherall and Bob Blair playing the didgeridoo and a series of speeches on the importance of Aboriginal culture.

After the completion of the event and performances a morning tea was held in Town Hall for the community to enjoy.

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Organisers were pleased with the event launch and community participation, and hope that the community will also be active in the First Nations Festival to be hosted in Glen Innes next year from September 16 to 19.

The festival's aim is to create an immersive Aboriginal experience, endorsed and hosted by the Nations of the Northern Highlands of NSW, that celebrates their cultural identity and creates a greater understanding of, and engagement of all peoples, with Aboriginal culture.

The festival also aims to support and strengthen the contemporary role of elders in Aboriginal communities, by celebrating the stories, art, song, games and language for which they are respected.

By empowering elders with support, the event can make a positive step in helping close the gap and transfer sacred spiritual knowledge to all Australians and visitors alike.

The festival will be offered as a free event in the hope of reaching as many people as possible to be able to share in, learn about and celebrate the culture and language of the Festival Nations.