If 'Straya Day means anything, it's a day to be proud of our fine nation and its inability to pronounce words with more than five vowels - a day to sizzle sausages, watch a heap of sport and rip the piss out of everything as much as humanly possible. We've got a hard-earned reputation as one of the chubbiest, most sport-obsessed and mildly offensive countries on earth to uphold, and if you've not yet made plans to do any of the above-mentioned activities, here are some events where you can do your bit as a 'Strayan this Thursday.
Always partial to a bit of a parade, Adelaide
's bringing out the marching band for an Australia Day Parade
through the city streets and into Elder Park, where you can stick around for some fireworks afterwards. You could then party on, Shane, with the Acker-Dacker tribute band Bon 'n' All for Oz Rock Day
at the Gov. More than any other city, Radelaideans have got sports-spectatorship well covered this Thursday, with the Australia vs India test
, the Australian Sprint Car Championships
and the National Track Cycling Championships
- events where every Australian can shine, doing what we all do best: eating chips and screaming at sportspeople.
doesn't so much up the spectator-sports ante as throw us something from way, way out of left-field, with the annual Australia Day Roach Races
at the Story Bridge Hotel. If you suspect watching cockroaches racing around a pub might spoil your sausage-eating appetite, then another alternative is the Fox Hotel, which was pretty much underwater this time last year but will this year host a huge street party
to celebrate, well, being dry for starters. Other roach-free Australia Day options include the Australia Day Pool Party
at Electric Playground and an afternoon sipping boutique Aussie beers
to the tunes of the Triple J Hottest 100 countdown at the Archive Beer Boutique.
Not to be outdone, WA have an event where people are actually expected to do some exercise themselves, with the Australia Day Swim
at Scarborough Beach. If you're up to it, the next leg for your Australia Day party-athlon around Perth
is with true athletes of the clubbing scene, the Stafford Brothers, Tydi and Hook n Sling for Club Paradiso
. For a slower but steadier music marathon, check out Oscar + Martin and Guere at Australia Day at the Bakery
, where in true Aussie style there will also be a free BBQ. And if you're still standing by that point, you can head back to the beach to watch the fireworks for the Australia Day Skyworks
, or keep an eye out for the flash mob
gathering at 4:30pm at the Bell Tower - for what, we don't quite know...
's got the Big Day Out
, which may not be a sporting event but it's an event where you can cheer for, scream at or smugly critique talented and/or famous people in much the same way as we, as a nation, have become accustomed. In fact, inviting international acts out here for flagging music festivals and then watching the dummy-spits fly is close to becoming our national summer pastime. But If music festivals aren't your thing, there's a free Festival of the Voice
on at the Rocks, where you can stake out a spot to watch the fireworks from the Australia Day Spectacular
after. If you're willing to put your budgie smugglers on and represent Oz in the party stakes, there's the all-day Australia Day Pool Party
featuring Black Eyed Pea Taboo at the Ivy. Or, there's the St George Open Air Cinema screening of Red Dog
if a not-so-big day out is more your Australia Day style.
there's the Harbourside
festival, where you can close your eyes and pretend for a moment you're in a harbour. When you open them to experience immediate disappointment at being in a big shed at the Docklands instead, there will at least be some mighty fine tunes from Laidback Luke, Derrick Carter and Bart B More to make it all better. Closer to town there are a stack of gigs and parties, with live bands and triple j Hottest 100 listening parties at the Laundry
and the Espy
, and a free concert (featuring Loon Lake and I, A Man) at Fed Square
where you can stick around for the fireworks
afterwards. If you'd prefer a quiet one, the St Kilda Open Air Cinema
will be screening Australian cinematic corker, Shine
, and if you're up for a not-so-quiet one, you can't go past Sydney Festival guest Prins Thomas at the Mercat
later in the Australia Day night.
If you find yourself somewhere in between these major cities there's a tonne of patriotic stuff going down wherever you are, but word on the street is that Baker's Delight are handing out free cheesymite scrolls
at 614 outlets around Australia. Yep, that's what we call living large in the lucky country.