Sign that events could be on the horizon light up Singleton gateway location
Signs that COVID-19 restrictions are being eased to allow the return of regional events from next year are being taken literally in Singleton with a new variable message board to help organisers spread the word about upcoming events.
Singleton Council has joined forces with Hunter Valley Operations and Austindo Consulting Services to fund the sign, which has been strategically positioned in Townhead Park on the New England Highway to take advantage of the 26,000 vehicles that pass by each day.
While the sign was introduced earlier this year, COVID-19 restrictions put a temporary stay on community gatherings so it has been employed to help spread public health messages and promote Council programs, including those under the Community Support Package.
But Vicki Brereton, Council’s Director Organisation and Community Capacity, said the NSW Government’s announcement that up to 5000 people would be allowed to gather at regional outdoor events from January next year could be a positive sign for Singleton’s events calendar in 2021.
“I hope this means community organisations may be able to plan those events that help to bring people together in a safe way, and we can start to use this sign for the purpose it was intended for,” she said.
“Before COVID-19 restrictions sent us to lockdown, Singleton was a destination for a range of fabulous community events all year round, including many derived from volunteer time with proceeds to benefit our community and worthwhile causes.
“I hope the NSW Government’s announcement is a sign that we can hold those events again soon, even if modifications are needed.”
The VMS board is a practical, environmentally sustainable and mobile tool to help spread the word about events in Singleton, and capture the attention of the thousands of motorists who pass by on the New England Highway.
“We’ve got our fingers crossed that 2021 will be a better year for events, and we’ll be able to see a range of ways we can bring people together safely, from live music and markets to exhibitions and shows,” Ms Brereton said.
“Council is really happy to work with Hunter Valley Operations and Austindo Consulting Services to have this board set up so that when restrictions are lifted and events can return, we’ll be ready to let everyone know where they can go and what they can do to reconnect.”