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Sydney: Tree planting to launch Mardi Gras

Fri 8 Feb 2008 In: International News View at Wayback

Sydney's Mardi Gras Festival 2008 launches tomorrow with a symbolic tree-planting ceremony and an interactive online forum. The tree – a Morton Bay Fig – will be planted at Moore Park East, at the area where the Parade ends, with a special plaque commemorating 30 years of Mardi Gras. In support of the event, New Mardi Gras has donated AUS$5,000 (NZ$5,675) to the Centennial Parklands Foundation towards purchasing new trees and shrubs. "This year, as the theme ‘Brave New Worlds' is all about renewal – looking at where we've come from and looking to the future – we thought a tree planting would be a symbolic ceremony," New Mardi Gras Chair Marcus Bourget told Sydney's SX magazine. The launch will also be supported by social networking site, who will have camera crews and blogging areas on site to capture messages of support, memories of Mardi Gras' past, and coming-out stories. The stories will then be uploaded on a customised Mardi Gras profile on MySpace. This, organisers say, will provide Australia's LGBT community a global forum to share their insights, stories and reflections. A selection of videos will also be broadcast on the big screens on the night of the Parade. "We think it's a good way of coming full circle," says Bourget, "in terms of getting people's stories at the launch and telling those stories to the public at the Parade." Sydney's three week Mardi Gras Festival - incorporating arts, sports and cultural events and activities as well as the famous parade and party - will see a wealth of international and national performers and visitors in Sydney including Cyndi Lauper, Margaret Cho, Faker, the Potbelleez, Carlotta and Olivia Newtown-John.    

Credit: News Staff

First published: Friday, 8th February 2008 - 4:51pm

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