Thousands to attend Assyrian New Year festivities in Fairfield

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This year’s festivities are set to be the largest yet with more than 20,000 expected to attend throughout the day.
A RECORD breaking crowd of 20,000 people are expected to attend the Assyrian New Year festivities this weekend, making it the biggest in a decade.

The celebrations date back to 6766 where the Babylonians and Assyrians believed the world was symbolically cleansed and recreated by the Gods in preparation for the New Year and the return of Spring.

Held at the Fairfield Showground on Sunday, the day will include live musical and theatrical performances, traditional dancers and food stalls, fireworks and amusement rides.

There will also be an art exhibition to display the destruction of the ancient Assyrian archaeological sites in Northern Iraq and in North East Syria.

Assyrian Youth Folk dance group will perform their traditional dance at the showground this Sunday.

Hermiz Shahen from the Assyrian Universal Alliance (AUA) said the aim of the event was to “keep history well and truly alive”.

“It’s one of the most important events handed down from ancient Assyria and we hope to highlight and strengthen our cultural heritage,” Mr Shahen said.

“We want to promote cross-cultural understanding and encourage our people to stick together. We don’t have a country so it’s important to not let our tradition die even thousands of years later because that’s all we have.”

Children from Kids World Kindy, in Fairfield Heights, performed in traditional Assyrian costume to celebrate the Assyrian New Year last year.

He said the peaceful festival hoped to look past the countless genocides against Assyrians in the Middle East over the past century and give everyone a chance to freely celebrate.

AUA president David David said the prestigious event will see guests from overseas, members of parliament and representatives from different community organisations in attendance.

“It’s been a successful, organised and well respected event in the past and we continue to work for that,” Mr David said.

Arrival of the Assyrian ”King and Queen”,at the Assyrian New Year Festival at Fairfield Show ground last year.

“Everyone is invited to attend the event in the heart of both Fairfield and the large Assyrian community.”

The event will run from 10am to 10pm with the official opening starting at 2pm.

Entry is $10 for adults and $5 for children.