Burramatta NAIDOC is a popular community, family-friendly event and the centre piece of Parramatta’s NAIDOC Week celebrations. This year’s theme ‘Because of Her, We Can’ celebrates and honours the significant contributions Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women have made in keeping Indigenous culture strong and enriching the oldest continuing culture on the planet.

Burramatta Naidoc 2018

So it’s fitting that women will take centre stage at Burramatta NAIDOC, which moves to the historic Parramatta Park. The bigger location provides more room for the full afternoon program of free family-friendly activities and special performances, including:

  • a vibrant line-up of performances by Indigenous artists
  • traditional corroboree ground for storytelling, dance and song
  • market stalls
  • roving performers
  • free bike tours
  • BBQ lunch
  • family-friendly workshops
  • fireworks

Burramatta Program of Activities and Entertainment

Burramatta NAIDOC highlights Parramatta as an important gathering place. And acknowledges the significant presence Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people continue to have through their living culture and traditions.

1Stage Program – Entertainment Headlined by Casey Donovan

In addition to a headline performance by Casey Donovan, the stage will welcome eclectic soul musician Evie J Willie, Triple J’s Unearthed High Indigenous Initiative 2017 winner Rebecca Hatch, hip hop artist DOBBY, and electric-soul duo Bow and Arrow.

  • 12pm: Corroboree Ground – Opening Ceremony, with Dixie Crawford (Master of Ceremonies), performances by Bubuwal Gumdah and the Jannawi Dance Clan
  • 12.45pm: Official Proceedings – City of Parramatta Lord Mayor Cr Andrew Wilson, and the City of Parramatta Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee
  • 1.15pm: Rebecca Hatch – Up and coming Western Sydney performer
  • 1.45pm: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women of Excellence Awards
  • 2.20pm: Evie J Willie – Soulful acoustic sounds
  • 3pm: DOBBY – Celebrated hip hop artist
  • 3.30pm: The Beatty Clan Crew – Torres Strait Islander dance workshop
  • 4.10pm: Casey Donovan – Award-winning and illustrious musician, loved by audiences Australia-wide
  • 5pm: Bow & Arrow – Local electro-soul duo
  • 6pm: Corroboree Ground – Closing ceremony
  • 6.30pm: Fireworks finale
  • 6.45pm: Spear by Bangarra Dance Theatre – Free film screening at Riverside Theatres (bookings essential)

2Community FREE Workshops

Families can enjoy a series of interactive workshops during Burramatta NAIDOC, including:

  • Jewellery making
  • Darug language
  • Large-scale sand art
  • Traditional arts & crafts
  • Tree painting with Chris Tobin, Darug man
  • Tool making & storytelling with Uncle Greg Simms, local Elder
  • Parramatta River Catchment – water-based activity

3Dyin Nura, Women’s Place

An exclusive program of keynote speakers, including writer and Aboriginal Affairs expert Cathy Craigie, will feature in the Dyin Nura, Women’s Place. There will also be Q&A sessions, local community talks and activities especially for women.

4Open Corroboree Ground

The community can also explore the large, open corroboree ground with performances by the Jannawi Dance Clan and experience Indigenous games, song and dance.

5Markets and FREE BBQ

There will be stalls showcasing Indigenous arts, crafts, skincare products and bushfoods. Plus, food stalls and a free barbeque lunch thanks to Bunnings and Mantra Parramatta.

6Other Family-Friendly Activities

While at Burramatta, families will be able to participate in and enjoy the following interesting and fun activities:

  • Healing tents
  • Cultural and heritage tours
  • Roving performers
  • Indigenous games – Koori play
  • GWS Giants – AFL skills and drills
  • Active Parramatta sports
  • Free bike hire by Addventageous
  • Parramatta Library – children’s gunya tents and activities
  • History tent presented by Parragirls Home, Parramatta Heritage Centre & National Trust
  • Aboriginal astronomy & star gazing

7Fireworks (6:30pm)

A spectacular fireworks display will close the Burramatta event at Parramatta Park.

8Spear‘ at Riverside Theatres (6:45pm to 8:15pm)

Riverside Theatres will host a free screening of Bangarra Dance Theatre’s outstanding feature film, Spear. The striking and original performance weaves story through dance to deliver an extraordinary experience.

Spear follows a young Aboriginal man named Djali from the outback to the streets of Sydney on his quest to understand what it means to be a man with ancient traditions in a modern world. Visit the Riverside Theatres website to book your free tickets.

Getting to Burramatta

Grounds Keeper Cafe Parramatta Park
George Street Gatehouse

The Burramatta celebrations are moving to Parramatta Park this year, at the Pavilion Flat area near the George Street Gatehouse. There you will find the Grounds Keeper Cafe and a small playground.

The closest entry to Parramatta Park is on the corner of George and O’Connell Streets. If you are driving, the nearest car park is in Hunter Street. And there is also the commuter car park on O’Connell Street next to the Western Sydney Stadium currently being built.

Parramatta Park is also a short walk from the Parramatta transport interchange and serviced by the FREE shuttle bus.