The Illawarra guide to Australia Day

Where to celebrate Australia Day in Wollongong, Shellharbour and Kiama.

• Australia Day Aquathon & Charity Walk: Australia’s largest swim and run. Individual and tag team options. Entry and details here; 8am to 11.30am; Wollongong Harbour.

• Citizenship Ceremony: Features the Australia Day ambassador address by Matt Cooper; Wollongong Town Hall; 10.30am.

• Wollongong Yacht Club Sailing Regatta: Enjoy the view of the racing sailboats leaving the harbour; Wollongong Harbour; 11.30am and 2.30pm. 

• WAVE FM Thong Throwing Competition: Age groups are 8 years and under, 9 to 15 years and 16 years plus. Thongs will be supplied; noon to 1pm; Wollongong Harbour. 

• Gun Battery and Firing of the Cannons: A re-enactment party of soldiers from the 1880s fort will march from the Old Courthouse to Smith’s Hill Battery on Cliff Road; 12.30pm; canons fired at 1pm. 

• WAVE FM Sand Sculpture Competition: Register from 10am at the WAVE FM tent, bring your sand sculpture tools; 1pm to 3pm; Wollongong Harbour.  

• Dragon Boat Encounter: Experience dragon boat paddling, ages 12 plus, coaching, boat and all equipment provided; 1pm to 5pm; Wollongong Harbour.

• Australia Day Skydivers: 1pm

• Air Show: Southern Biplane Adventures aerobatics displays; 2pm and 6.30pm.

• Concerts and entertainment: Noon to 8.30pm, Lang Park stage

• Fireworks spectacular: 9pm

See here for Wollongong’s full program.

• Breakfast by the Lake: Breakfast is served until 10am. Free activities include face painting, pony rides, sand modelling competition, animal farm and carnival rides; 7am to noon; Reddall Reserve, Lake Illawarra; $4 per person. 

• Shellharbour Breakfast by the Lake program:

7am: Tony Martin

7.30am: Citizenship ceremony, ambassador address by Dr Timothy Sharp aka Dr Happy, then Australia Day Citizen of the Year awards presentation.

8.45am: Darcy Le Year

9.30am: Ricky Lynch Band

10.45am: Southern Bi-Planes Aerial Display

11am: Urban Country

See here for Shellharbour's full program.

• Kiama Downs Breakfast: Breakfast and activities, including thong throwing, treasure hunt, flag raising, sand modelling, brickies relay and basketball shoot-out; Kiama Downs SLSC, Jones Beach, Kiama Downs; 7.30am to noon. 

• Kiama Breakfast: Breakfast and activities, including face painting, jumping castle and Australia Day Ambassador address by celebrity chef Lyndey Milan; 7.30am to noon; Coronation Park, Surf Beach, Kiama. 

• Gerringong Breakfast: Breakfast and activities, including book and white elephant stalls, children’s games, volleyball, teddy bear picnic with prizes for dressing bears, speech by former major in Australian Army Glenn Kolomeitz and entertainment by Rusty Hinges; 7.30am to noon; Gerringong Surf Club, Werri Beach, south end.

• Jamberoo Breakfast: BBQ breakfast and fun family activities; 8.30am to noon; Reid Park, Jamberoo.

• Citizenship Ceremony: Live entertainment by Penny Hartgerink and Australia Day Ambassador address by celebrity chef Lyndey Milan. Bring seating or picnic blankets; 11am to noon; outside Kiama Community Centre, Hindmarsh Park, Kiama. 

See here for Kiama's full program.

We want to know how you're celebrating Australia Day. On Sunday send us your pics for our online gallery. You can upload them through our iPhone app, Facebook page or Twitter (@illawarramerc).


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