Ryde ambassador Sonia Sadiq Ghandi to give keynote address

Sonia Sadiq Ghandi, outspoken social justice advocate and City of Ryde's 2018 Australia Day ambassador

Multicultural advocate and City Of Ryde Australia Day Sonia Sadiq Ghandi will give the keynote address at the North Ryde School of Arts Community Hall this Friday at 11am.

Sonia will be one of several VIP guests who include Bennelong MP John Alexander, Ryde MP Victor Dominello and City of Ryde Mayor Jerome Laxale.

The official ceremony at the North Ryde School of Arts precedes the Battle of the Bands which kicks off at 5pm on North Ryde Common as part of the Australia Day Concert.

A fireworks spectacular at the Common will be held from 5pm until 9pm.

The Australia Day Concert will feature Spencer Jones from The Voice and Jay Parrino and The Rockers of Oz alongside this yearÕs Battle Of The Bands guest judge Isabella Manfredi.

The Battle of the Band finalists include ‘The Vinyl Press’, ‘A Big Mistake’ and ‘Supahoney’ and the City of Ryde will have Australian flags to wave in support of your favourite band.

The winning band will receive $1,000 cash, a mastering session at Studios 301 and a mentoring session with a leading Australian music industry executive

This is a good opportunity to bring your own picnic rug or deck chair, wave the flag and enjoy the concert with family and friends.

There will also be rides, sports, food trucks and a great line up of entertainment, ending with our spectacular firework display.

Activities for children include amusement rides, mini tennis, volleyball, soccer, cricket, scoop ball, frisbee throwing, and face painting.

Local people can also enter the thong throwing competition for your chance to win freebies for whoever can throw it the furthest in the kids and adult categories.

Mayor Jerome Laxale said that while Australia Day is a fun celebration, it is also a time to reflect on our national identity.

On Australia Day, we come together as a nation to celebrate our diverse society and landscape, our remarkable achievements and our bright future, he said.

It is also a chance to reflect on our nation’s history, and to consider how we can make Australia an even better place in future.

For full details go to ryde.rocks/AusDay