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Eggcellent Easter fun

in Bendigo

“Do you think there will be lots of eggs to find Mum?” asks my five year old excitedly from the back seat. We are on our way to begin a long weekend of Easter festivities in my home town of Bendigo, beginning with the Vision Australia Good Friday Easter Egg Hunt being held in the beautiful Rosiland Park, right in the heart of the city.

The Bendigo Easter Festival is a long held tradition, established in 1870 during the Gold Rush years by the local Chinese community as a way to celebrate their heritage and to raise funds for local health care providers, something it still does to this day. Fast forward 140-odd years and the festival is now an extensive array of family orientated events, celebrating Bendigo’s history and present and attracting thousands of visitors to the Bendigo region every Easter weekend.

Already a vibrant regional city, Bendigo comes even more alive during the Easter Festival. The hub of town becomes a bustling carnival of entertainment and activities for the whole family. Extending from the Golden Dragon Museum and down through the park, the area is filled with fun, food and fantasy.

The Easter Egg hunt on Good Friday is a fabulous way to start the weekend, the joy it brings to little faces simply cannot be beaten. Both of my little people had a turn at hunting for the eggs, each within their age groups, making it much easier for everyone to come away with lots of treats.

From there, it was happy squeals and “Come on Mum, I want to go see the …”, for the remainder of the morning. Lucky for me, I took Grandma along with us, so had some back up to keep everyone together and squeeze in as much as we could before the little sister needed to head home for a nap. From the side shows, face painting, a mobile animal farm, food stalls and carnival rides, we made the rounds and had an absolute ball. We finished our morning with a stroll through the market, then home for a well-earned rest!

There are many of the same activities occurring on the Saturday and Sunday of the festival, with the highlight being the Torchlight Procession on the Saturday night. As my little ones are still so little, this was not the on the list of things to do this year, however, we were all set for the culmination of the festival on the Sunday, the Gala Parade.

After the thrill of the Easter Bunny’s visit in the morning, we got ourselves organised for the parade. This includes loading up the car with outdoor chairs, an Esky and food, then wandering the streets to find a spot along procession path to watch it pass up by. The trick is to get in early, find your spot, set up and have some entertainment for the kids while you wait for the procession to start. Once in action the kids come alive with awe and amazement, especially with the arrival of the dragons.

We had a fantastic afternoon along with the many thousands of others who make the effort to be a part of this wonderful festival. Make sure you don’t miss it next Easter.

When not partaking in pretend tea parties with her 2-year old daughter, or learning the finer points of playing Minecraft® with her 5-year old son, Jodie is the voice of Fresh Home Cook - a blog focused on food free from gluten and lactose but full of flavour the whole family will enjoy.

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