By Meg Kennedy
It’s almost bewitching hour in Ballan, with final preparations under way for the 2019 Ballan Autumn Festival.
Over the last week a spell has been cast over the main street, turning into a hub of wizardry and magic; including a poster of Harry Potter racing on his broomstick for the ‘golden snitch’ at the Ballan Post Office (pictured).
Ballan Autumn Festival President Kevin Harper said he’s most looking forward to the grand parade, due to the “excitement of seeing the whole local community coming together, using their talents in decorating the floats, and [seeing] the joy of those parents and friends waving to those taking part.”
“It’s Ballan celebrating what it does best, which is enjoying itself in the best way that it possibly can,” said Mr Harper.
Other stand-out events for this year include the Ballan and District CWA’s morning and afternoon teas, as well as live entertainment on stage.
For what attendees should look out for, Mr Harper says that “roving magicians” are a new addition for this year.
“There will be people providing tricks in the street and at the other venues, at the hotels, and the morning and afternoon teas being served in the Ballan Mechanics Hall,” he said.
A tenet of the Autumn Festival has always been for Ballan to showcase its sense of community, and its something that Mr Harper hopes attendees take away from this year – particularly if last year’s record-breaking numbers are anything to go by.
“I hope that they would take away a sense of a community, working as a community. A community that lives together, works together and plays together, and a sense of what it is to be part of this small rural community,” he said.
The Ballan Autumn Festival committee is also still looking for volunteers to help early in the morning.
“If people could come at around 7am or 8am to help for a couple of hours, and then they can stay and enjoy the rest of the festival,” said Mr Harper.
The Ballan Autumn Festival will be held on Sunday, 17 March from 10-4pm, with the grand parade at 11am.
Further information on the Ballan Autumn Festival, including how to become a volunteer, a sponsor, a complete list of entertainment, and interviews with sponsors can be found at https://www.ballanautumnfestival.org.