Sydney’s back as Vivid lights the way for crowds to return

“Sydney shines during Vivid Sydney and I cannot wait for everyone to experience it,” she said.

While Vivid drew crowds like moths to a flame, other festivals and carnivals around Sydney’s also made a return this weekend, breathing life into areas such Blacktown, Manly, Pyrmont and Fairfield.

Colored by the return of The Streets Alive and Parade Day, Blacktown’s CBD came to life with entertainment, arts and crafts, markets stalls and free amusement rides on Saturday. The parade, which started at 11am, showcased Blacktown’s multiculturalism, history and emergency services.

The northern beaches will become a playground for the palate this month, kicking off with the Taste of Manly event which started on Saturday. Local food, craft beer, cider and Manly spirits flowed while live music from local artists including Roshani and LamBros. coursed through The Corso.

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Like Vivid, Taste of Manly has been put on hold for two years during the pandemic. To give the event the best chance of running uncertainty among COVID, Northern Beaches Council head of events Lisa Dowsett hosted the event at Manly Oval.

And despite weather challenges forcing the council to quickly adapt, Dowsett was determined to make sure the event went ahead. “This week we were smashed by the weather and the oval is actually underwater,” she said. “We’ve got a smaller event than we planned, but we’ve been able to pull something off.”

Wine, beer and produce from Orange made its way to The Pyrmont Food and Wine Festival on Saturday, alongside local Sydney food truck vendors, artists and local producers. Lord Mayor Clover Moore opened the event which is hosting live performances from local entertainers over the weekend.

The Culinary Carnival in Fairfield also opened on Saturday, with cooking demonstrations from celebrity chef Fast Ed and actress, opera singer and TV personality Silvia Colloca, along with junior cooking workshops. Free face painting, music and roving performers were scattered throughout the event, finishing with a firework finale in the evening.

Despite uncertainty generated by COVID and weather conditions, Dowsett said event organizers were endeavoring to draw people back into cities. “The world is somewhat coming back to normal, but events are still really impacted,” she said. “[But] bringing events like [Taste of Manly] back is important to bring people back in and help the businesses that have been impacted as well.”

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