Cootamundra Wattle (Acacia baileyana)
About the Association
The Wattle Day Association is a not-for-profit, non-political, non-sectarian organisation incorporated in the Australian Capital Territory. We welcome all who want to join us to promote the celebration of National Wattle Day for all Australians.
Our aims are to promote:
The Association will advance these aims in the period 2011 - 2013 by focusing on the following key areas to:
L to R: Florence Fahy, Jack Fahy, Elizabeth Falkiner, Suzette Searle,
New members are very welcome
Want to help us celebrate National Wattle Day on 1 September?
Want to just sit in on our meetings to see if you are interested in what we do before making up your mind?
You are also invited to join the Association to help us promote the celebration National Wattle Day. Individual membership is a donation of
Donations for membership can be made either by cheque made out to the Wattle Day Association and sent to
by direct electronic deposit into the Association's account:
We hold our meetings in Canberra at The Australian National University (Physics Link Building via Science Road) every six weeks or so.
Would you like to feature your group and its
Please Contact Us at the Wattle Day Association
President: Terry Fewtrell
Jack Fahy (first President of the Wattle Day Association) celebrating National Wattle Day with students from Mt Rogers Community School, Belconnen Mall, Canberra ACT, 1 September 2000
The Wattle Day Association is a voluntary, not-for-profit, non-political, non-sectarian community organisation that began in the suburbs of Canberra in 1998 (this was 88 years after the Wattle Day was first celebrated in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide on the 1st September 1910).
It was founded by Jack Fahy in the hope that the Association would foster Wattle Day as a national celebration of being Australian.
Jack Fahy first had the idea of re-starting Wattle Day celebrations in Canberra in1983 and became chairman of the ‘Week of the Wattle’ subcommittee he established as part of the Canberra Australia Day Council (CADC). (Jack had been CADC Chairman 1979 – 1982.)
In 1983 Jack's idea was that the ‘Week of the Wattle’ would be celebrated first in Canberra in 1983 and then around Australia in 1984. He promoted the ‘Week of the Wattle’ (22 – 28 August 1983) through newspaper, TV and radio interviews, and contacted schools, several community groups and public service departments to encourage them to wear the green and gold (a sprig of wattle) on Wednesday 24 August to celebrate Wattle Day.
However it wasn't until 1992 that the first of September was gazetted as National Wattle Day and in 1998 that Jack tried again to drum up support by ringing newspapers to ask why Australians weren’t celebrating their National Wattle Day.
As a result of enthusiastic media interest not only from across Australia but also from the UK, Jack invited interested people through an advertisement in The Canberra Times to join him to form the Wattle Day Association.
Jack and his wife Florence initially funded the Association with a personal loan of $1000. Its first members were friends, neighbours and other interested Canberrans (historians, botanists, wattle enthusiasts, scientists). They included school principal, David Raff and his teacher wife Jan Raff who composed three songs: ‘The Week of the Wattle’ (1982), ‘Song of the Wattle’ (1983) and the Wattle Day Song (1999).
The Association then went on to successfully bid for small government grants (Centenary of Federation federal grant and ACT government grants). They used these funds to promote the day: establish a website, design a logo, and produce badges, ribbons, posters and an information flyer to give or send to anyone who wanted them to celebrate their own National Wattle Day. Jack was the Association’s first President from 21 September 1998 until 22 March 2007 when he retired from the position. The current President is Terry Fewtrell.
Since 1998 in Canberra, the Association has celebrated and promoted National Wattle Day by: