Flag Day (Australia)
|Australian National Flag Day|
|Type||Patriotic, Historical, Nationalist|
|Significance||Anniversary of the first flying of the Australian National Flag in 1901|
|Observances||Flag raising ceremonies|
In Australia, Australian National Flag Day is celebrated on 3 September. It commemorates the day in 1901 on which the Australian National Flag was first flown. On that day Prime Minister Edmund Barton announced the winners of the official 1901 Federal Flag Design Competition. A large flag, 5.5 by 11 metres (18 by 36 ft), was flown over the dome of the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne.
Australian National Flag Day is not a public holiday.
Observances and traditions
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The idea of an annual day specifically celebrating the Australian National Flag dates from 1984. In that year the New South Wales branch of the Australian National Flag Association (ANFA) arranged for 3 September to be observed as "Australian National Flag Day" at a public ceremony held in Hyde Park, Sydney. The most consistently held and well attended Flag Day ceremonies have also been staged at various locations in Sydney including Tumbalong Park where the Governor of New South Wales, Sir David Martin, delivered a Flag Day address in 1989 which he said: "I come here as someone who is proudly Australian, I come here out of respect for a flag which is proudly Australian". The official centenary of federation flag raising event held at the national maritime museum in 2001 would attract a crowd of several thousand Flag Day spectators.
On Flag Day 1996 an official ceremony took place during the long running event held at Martin Place Amphitheatre in the centre of Sydney. On that occasion David Jull, Minister for Administrative Services, made a commemorative address reading a message from the Prime Minister, John Howard, welcoming the proclamation of 3 September as Australian National Flag Day. He then presented the ANFA with a copy of the proclamation signed by Sir William Deane.
Ceremonies are held annually in schools, other capitals and major provincial centres. Past guests of honour at Flag Day events include the Governor-General, state Governors and members of parliament who along with other dignitaries have also made commemorative messages available to mark the occasion.
- Australian Government (12 August 2013). "Australian National Flag: Australian National Flag Day". It's an Honour!: Australia Celebrating Australians. Archived from the original on 19 February 2013. Retrieved 3 September 2013.