With the arrival of spring, National Wattle Day is upon us, providing the perfect opportunity to celebrate our country, people, and our natural flora.
Wattle Day is an important National Day with a rich history, and there are plenty of ways to get involved in celebrations in your local area.
When is Wattle Day?
Wattle Day has been celebrated across Australia on 1 September for over 100 years, but was officially recognised as a National Day in 1992.
Wattle Day is celebrated on this date because this is the first day of Spring, and when the iconic Golden Wattle begins to bloom.
The blooming of the Wattle symbolising the first day of spring represents the importance of renewal and resilience.
What is Wattle Day?
Wattle Day is a positive celebration of all things Australian.
The Golden Wattle is Australia’s National floral emblem, it is within the Australian Coat of Arms, and is the reason behind our National colours that our sporting teams proudly display.
The Wattle is native to Australia and has grown on our lands for 30,000 years.
It is known for being extremely resilient and it is among the first plants to regenerate after bushfires.
Wattle Day was introduced unofficially in 1910 to allow all Australians to celebrate our country and our people.
Why is Open Minds the sponsor of Wattle Day?
Wattle Day is deeply engrained in the roots of Open Minds.
In 1912, the Queensland Wattle League was formed, known today as Open Minds.
The Queensland Wattle Day League was originally founded with the purpose of fundraising to support art scholarships for talented artists.
When World War One began, the League quickly broadened its scope to fund artificial limbs for returned servicemen, whilst continuing its efforts supporting artists.
After both World Wars, in 1952 the League began supporting people living with mental illness and disability.
It wasn’t until 2003 that the League rebranded to become Open Minds.
How to get involved with Wattle Day
Here’s what’s happening across Queensland to recognise and celebrate this important date:
- Kurilpa Bridge will be lit up in green and gold on the nights of 31 August and 1 September
- Story Bridge and Victoria Bridge will be lit in green and gold on the night of 31 August
- Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens Dome, Reddacliff Place structures, Wickham Terrace Car Park architectural wall and the Breakfast Creek Bridge, Newstead will be lit up in green and gold on 31 August
- Tree planting at Our Lady of the Angels School in Wavell Heights with the Governor of Queensland, Her Excellency the Honourable Doctor Jeannette Young AC PSM on 31 August (invite only)
- Redland City Nursery, IndigiScapes at Capalaba, will be conducting wattle celebration activities at their Eco Markets on the morning of Saturday 2 September.
The IndigiScapes café will be serving Wattleseed muffins, Wattleseed Chai and Wattle and Chai Tea. There will be a Wattle stall at the markets.
- The Old School Gallery on Shore Road Cleveland will be celebrating National Wattle Day with displays of wattle inspired artworks in the mornings of Sunday 27 August and Sunday 3 September.
At 10:30 am on Sunday 3 September, Cr Tracey Hughes will be planting a wattle seedling on the gallery grounds.
Free wattle tree seedlings will be available with compliments of the IndigiScapes nursery.
- Townsville will be lighting up in green and gold – the Townsville Sign, Victoria Bridge, Wharton Reef Lighthouse, George Roberts Bridge, Old Magistrates Court House, Central Park Boardwalk and the Little Fletcher Bridge
- Mt Morgan Wattle Day Festival on Saturday 2 September 9:30am to 2:00pm at the Mt Morgan Railway Complex