Sunfest 2021 – Sinhala and Tamil New year celebration in Sydney

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The Sinhalese Cultural Forum of NSW Inc.

Sinhala and Tamil New year celebration event ‘Sunfest 2021’ organised by The Sinhalese cultural forum of NSW, in collaboration with community organisations were successfully held recently in Sydney. Like every other year several Community organisations joined in collaboration to successfully present the ‘Sunfest 2021’. The Community organisations German Tech Old Boys Association, SPUR, Austra-Lanka Muslim Association, NSW Catholic Association, SCATS, Orange Leaf Seniors Group extended their valuable support throughout the day.

Consul General of Sri Lanka in Sydney Hon. Lakshman Hulugalle, Hon. MP for Riverstone Kevin Connolly, Hon. Mayor of Hornsby Shire Council Cr Phillip Ruddock participated as Invited Guests.

Event started with the New year Traditions and customs, Oil Anointing ceremony, Worship elders to get blessings, Informative speech by Dr Ubayasiri Vijayananda Wickrama regarding Avurudhu customs, Speeches by Dr. Seneviratne Banda and the Invited special guests.  A spectacular dance was presented by Vidurathana dance school. The Pioneers of the community Dr & Mrs Wickrama, Dr Seviratna Banda and the guests were invited for the customary ‘Avurudhu Table’ the morning tea with Traditional food such as Kiribath and mouth-watering sweets and Tea/coffee generously supplied by participating community organisations. This was an open event with free entry well attended by all walks of the community within the limitations of Covid restrictions.

Traditional New year games have been a highlight of the morning session. Special mention to German tech Old boys Association for organising and managing the games for children and adults. Valuable support given by other community Organisations are greatly appreciated. Due to the Covid restrictions the capacity at the venue was limited. The SPUR Organisation has made a great contribution managing the crowds and running the Kotthu stall. Catholic Association managed the zoom link throughout the day.  Austra-Lanka Muslim Association, German Tech and SCATS have generously supplied the food Items for the new year table. Special mention to Orange Leaf seniors’ group for providing Tea/Coffee for the guests throughout the day.

There has been a noticeable presence from the Taruna youth Group of the SCF who have been actively involved in welcoming guests, Compering, Arranging the New year table, Face painting, crowd management, running a drinks stall.

The afternoon Cultural session was divided in to 2 slots to allow more people to enjoy the new year cultural show. The spectacular Multicultural dance items presented by dance schools and singing Items by the talented Sydney siders has been well commended by the audience.

Traditional Sweets stall, Drinks stalls, Kotthu and Hopper stalls run by the committees and the members of the community has been extremely popular among the guests.

Event 360 and Butterfly Avenue has done a wonderful job providing sound Lighting and music for the event. The stage decorations by Mr. Somaratne Uwage brought in valuable cultural essence to the event. Photography by Mr. Robin Bosco of RCB photography. Special mention to comperes Hashan Prematillake and Thilak Ranasinghe who has brightened up the atmosphere.

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