Wednesday, January 24, 2024
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
Mackay Regional Council has made the difficult decision to cancel tomorrow night’s Australia Day Awards Gala.
The decision was made to ensure the safety of attendees due to possible hazardous weather conditions associated with the crossing of a forecasted tropical cyclone.
Mayor Greg Williamson said the decision was a difficult one that council was taking with an abundance of caution.
“The fact that we have a cyclone forecast to cross the coast late at night about the time this event is set to conclude is something we can’t ignore,” Mayor Williamson said.
“We don’t want 400-plus people on the road coming from all parts of our region if there is severe weather,’’ he said.
“We are currently looking at options around an appropriate way to celebrate the winners and nominees at a later date.”
The winners of the Mackay Regional Council Australia Day Awards, including the Citizen and Young Citizen of the Year, will be announced on Australia Day (January 26).
The MECC team will be contacting ticket holders today to notify them of the cancellation and provide refunds where applicable.
The Australia Day Citizenship Ceremony in the MECC on Australia Day morning will also be postponed to a later date.
For updates on the 12 council-supported Australia Day Community Events, including postponements and cancellations, residents are advised to head to council’s website or the Facebook pages of the organisers.
The Bureau of Meteorology has a current warning zone for gale force winds with damaging wind gusts to 120 km/h for the Mackay region (within 24 hours) and a storm tide is expected between Townsville and Mackay.
People between Ayr to Sarina, including Mackay, Bowen and the Whitsunday Islands, should take precautions and stay current with the latest advice.