CHW Managing Director Paul O’Donohue, Mayor Cr Samantha McIntosh, DirtGirl and The New Joneses, Tamara DiMattina.

Family-friendly focus at 2018 Ballarat Begonia Festival BALLARAT’S much-loved Begonia Festival returns to the Ballarat Botanical Gardens in 2018 with a new program of events for the entire family to enjoy.

There will be something for residents and visitors of all ages, with this year’s program encompassing a whole-family focus.

This year the City of Ballarat welcomes back popular television personality Costa Georgiadis who plans to get the whole community involved in a program of talks drawing on his allconsuming passion for plants and people.

Inspiring young gardeners will also have the chance to get grubby with the stars of dirtgirlworld and Get Grubby TV, DIRTGIRL and Costa the Gnome throughout the entire long weekend.

For the first time in the festival’s 66-year history, the gin renaissance will arrive at the Botanical Gardens for those looking to take a break from the festivities and enjoy a drop among the beautiful surrounds.

Ballarat’s brewers and distillers joined forces to bring this new addition to the 2018 festival, which will also include local beer.

The popular Mitchell Harris Wine Garden also returns with the best in the region’s local produce and live music on display.

Children will be entertained in the Super Sandpit, can learn to create their own herb garden and design their own gnome hat, tackle the obstacle challenge or search the Garden for gnomes.

Festival community partner, Central Highlands Water, will also be on hand to teach festival-goers how to grow water-efficient gardens.

The festival’s namesake, the Begonia Display will feature 2500 tuberous begonias grown by the City of Ballarat’s dedicated gardeners.

Admire the beauty of the Botanical Gardens, wander the Creative Designers Market and celebrate Ballarat’s community spirit with the Power FM Begonia Parade during the 2018 Ballarat Begonia Festival.

To view the full program visit: ballaratbegoniafestival.com

City of Ballarat Mayor Samantha McIntosh said, “It is fair to say there are few events which capture the true community spirit than that of the Ballarat Begonia Festival.

ABC Garden Guru Costa Georgiadis plans to get the
whole community involved.

“The festival may have evolved over its 66 years, but it has always and will continue to, unite our community to celebrate our diversity and spirit among the beautiful backdrop that is the Ballarat Botanical Gardens.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank our festival partners who help make this festival happen, and I encourage everyone to take advantage of the free family-friendly activities available this March long weekend.” Central Highlands Water (CHW) is a major sponsor of the festival.

Managing Director Paul O’Donohue said this year CHW was promoting Live, Create, Grow, Play. “People will be able to explore life and liveability in the Central Highlands region, chat with our celebrity guests, learn how to grow water efficient gardens, vote in our art competition and compete in our Be Smart Choose Tap handball competition,” he said.

Presented by the City of Ballarat, the 2018 Ballarat Begonia Festival is free and will be held at the Ballarat Botanical Gardens between 10-12 March 2018.