Unexpected picnic site set to delight

May 19, 2021 BY

A PICNIC with a twist awaits at one of Ballarat’s most beautiful locations, the Ballarat New Cemetery.

People of all ages are invited to spend the day at the Cemetery Picnic Day on 22 May as part of Ballarat Heritage Festival.

Sounds a bit morbid? As Ballarat Cemetery Trust CEO Annie De Jong explained, cemetery picnics were quite popular in times past.

“With the lack of parks and infrastructure in the late 1800s, cemeteries were prime picnic spots,” said,” she said.

“Spending time in cemeteries was one way to reconnect with loved ones who are no longer physically with us.

“The aim of this event is to celebrate this tradition by bringing the people of Ballarat and surrounds back into the cemetery to admire the scenic gardens and pay respects to its 130,000 residents.”

The 55-acre plot of land which makes up the cemetery remains a beautiful landmark, with its neatly kept lawns and more than 2500 roses to pay respects to its residents.

This is a family-friendly event and attendees and invited to dress up in their finery and vintage wares.

As well as the opportunity to enjoy a delicious picnic, there will be many activities, including a treasure hunt, tombstone rubbing, a market to peruse, or a ride in a horse-drawn carriage.

Various historical tours of the grounds and crematorium will also be taking place throughout the day

There will also be live music performances on the lawn and the opportunity to pick up a hamper from The Gatehouse and art space.

The Gatehouse owner Annmarie Sloane invited people of all ages to come along.

“We are encouraging people to get into the spirit by dressing up in your finery, packing a hamper, grabbing a treat from The Gatehouse and meander through the brilliant, historical and majestic Ballarat New Cemetery,” she said.

The Cemetery Picnic Day is set for 22 May between 10am and 5pm at the Ballarat New Cemetery, 1250 Doveton Street North, Invermay Park. Entry is by gold coin donation and for booking details head to ballaratcemeteries.com.au.



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