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In the media

 WDA opinion pieces distributed to the media (2006 - 2021)

 Australia Day - great celebration but needs a new date

by Suzette Searle for Australia Day 26 January 2021

1 September is an alternative date worth considering for Australia Day celebrations. This is also National Wattle Day, a springtime celebration that offers a rich history and meaning for all Australians. National days say something about the identity and values of the people who celebrate them. This year the government–owned National Australia Day Council (NADC) gives the following description:

‘On Australia Day, we reflect on our history, its highs and its lows.

We respect the stories of others.

And we celebrate our nation, its achievements and most of all, its people.’

Australia Day is the latest of four names used for the anniversary of 26 January 1788. During the 1800s it was called First Landing Day, Foundation Day and Anniversary Day, arguably all accurate descriptions. Celebration of a nation – that is something different. Australia became a nation in 1901 on 1 January – another date for consideration if we are in good shape after New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Read more...

Sept. 1st - A Wattle Day like no Other - the unity we need

by Suzette Searle for National Wattle Day 1 September 2020

This year’s National Wattle Day (Tuesday September 1st) is at a time when Australia's unity is being tested and vital to our future.

Wattle is a unifying symbol that we can all relate to, irrespective of our politics, ethnicity, or religion or what state or territory we live in. Its diversity reflects us as a nation of Indigenous peoples and colonists, settlers, immigrants and refugees from across the world. Read more ...

 

Australia Day - our day needs a new date

by Suzette Searle for 2020 Australia Day

The celebration of Australia Day on 26 January is not set in stone. Surely it is not beyond us to select a different date that represents how we all want to see ourselves? Read more ...

Suzette Searle July 2019

Dr Suzette Searle
President of the Wattle Day Association Inc.

Let's make Australia Day Gold! 26 January 2019

In 2019 Terry Fewtrell, then President of the Wattle Day Association wrote, just as we have celebrated the New Year and enjoy the summer holidays, people start writing newspaper articles and Letters to the Editor about Australia Day.

Yes, let’s celebrate Australia Day – but on which day? Read more here...

In 2018 Terry Fewtrell, suggested that National Wattle Day has a unique role to play to diffuse some of the anger and disharmony that occurs now with celebrations on 26 January. Click here to read more...

For more of Terry's articles from

Terry Fewtrell
President of the Wattle Day Association Inc.(March 2007- present)

Photo: S.D.Searle 26 January 2018

 

Terry Fewtrell
President of the Wattle Day Association Inc.(March 2007- present)

Terry Fewtrell at the podium at a Wattle a Day Dinner


Speeches and articles by Terry Fewtrell


Let's make Australia Day Gold! 26 January 2019

Just as we have celebrated the New Year and enjoy the summer holidays, people start writing newspaper articles and Letters to the Editor about Australia Day.

 

Yes, let’s celebrate Australia Day – but on which day? Read more here...

 

 

 WDA President Terry Fewtrell (left) and below
addressing an Australian Citizenship Ceremony
about the significance of National Wattle Day for all Australians

Articles (2006-2019) by Terry Fewtrell (2nd President of the Wattle Day Association from 2007-2019)

'Let's make Australia Day Gold' 26 January 2019

'Wattle: A Deep Time reflection' 1 Sept 2018

'Our Wattle helps again and supports drought relief'1 Sept 2018

'How we can fix the Australia Day mess' 26 January 2018

Let Wattle Day end Australia Day arguments by Terry Fewtrell 1 September 2017

'Australian Days' by Terry Fewtrell 26 January 2016

 'National Wattle Day - a celebration for all Australians' by Terry Fewtrell 1 Sept. 2015

 'A way out of the Australia Day blues' by Terry Fewtrell 25 January 2014

 'Solving the Australia Day Puzzle' by Terry Fewtrell 26 January 2013

 'Humble Wattle Gives Us Identity' by Terry Fewtrell 3 Feb. 2012

'Wattle Day - An essential part of the Australian narrative' by Terry Fewtrell 2011

'The Call of the Wattle' by Terry Fewtrell (Second President) 2006

 

Jack Fahy & Terry Fewtrell

Jack Fahy (First President) and Terry Fewtrell (Second President) 

Photo: S.D. Searle 31 Aug. 2013

 

 

 

Message from the first President

'National Wattle Day - first day of Spring'

 

Jack Fahy

Jack Fahy - First President of the Wattle Day Association

 

As the wattle blossoms gold to welcome in the Australian spring, let us celebrate being Australian.

We are extremely fortunate and blessed to be who we are and to live on our island continent.

Being Australian is, as with everything else, in a constant state of change. There is not a thing that you see, hear or think which is not changing. So let us not think that being Australian means conforming to a rigid set of values, traditions or stereotypes from the past.. To be Australian 250 years ago would have meant being a nomadic Aboriginal; 150 years ago, it may have been a British settler.

Today we are a multicultural Australia with some wonderful traditions and systems. What will we be in 50 years time?

"Australia's national colours of green and gold are those of the Golden Wattle tree in flower."[1] It is also our national floral emblem.

The land seems to have given us the symbol to celebrate being Australian and it is for ALL Australians.

Let us therefore celebrate being fortunate enough to have the gold and the beauty that is within us and within our land on National Wattle Day - the first day of Spring.

"Wear a sprig of wattle or something green and something gold."

I hope that National Wattle Day becomes a celebration for ALL Australians and will lead us in this ever-changing world to aspire and evolve into being better Australians.

Jack Fahy 
President 
(1998 - 2007)

[1] Reference: "Australian Symbols", Commonwealth of Australia 2000, ISBN 0 642 471312

 

Message from the first President  by Jack Fahy (First President of the Wattle Day Association)