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Sunday, June 20, 2021

Floriade set to return for 2021 with theme ‘future of flowers’

The Territory’s favourite flower festival is back, this year with the theme ‘the future of flowers’.

Launched today, Floriade 2021 will run from 11 September to 10 October, and after the success of last year’s pandemic-induced ‘Floriade in the suburbs’, 300,000 bulbs will again be planted outside of Commonwealth Park in Canberra’s suburban areas.

Floriade executive producer Vickii Cotter said one million bulbs are set to be planted “back home” in Commonwealth Park, with year’s event to focus on sustainability.  

“I mean, [sustainability] is something that we really should be having conversations about.

“And I think having such a beautiful festival that really features some amazing flowers is a great place to have that conversation.”

NightFest will also return for four nights of live entertainment from 30 September to 3 October, with the program of events still being finalised.

Chief Minister Andrew Barr said after a tough 2020, crowds returning to Commonwealth Park for Floriade 2021 would mean a significant boost to the tourism sector.

Andrew Barr launches Floriade 2021
Chief Minister Andrew Barr hopes Floriade 2021 visitor numbers will exceed half a million.

The ACT Government is hoping for more than half a million visitors to this year’s event, to bring in more than $50 million for the local economy. Floriade’s launch on Thursday coincided with the announcement Jetstar would operate a service out of the ACT for the first time, with Canberra to Brisbane flights to start in September.

“So it’s going to be a great celebration of spring,” he said. “And it’s a great time to showcase the city to tourists with 300,000 bulbs all around the city as well.”

With COVID-19 an ever-present reality, Mr Barr said while an outdoor event, Floriade 2021 would still need to operate under a COVID-safe plan. Visitors to the park will be required to check in using the Territory’s contact tracing app.

“And it may be that we need to restrict numbers at certain peak times if there’s a COVID safe protocol requirement depending on the circumstances at the time,” he said.

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