New Year's Eve

(Botanic Gardens)

Hello, everyone. You all look as though you're having a wonderful time! I would like to acknowledge the Gadigal people of the Eora nation, the traditional custodians of this land, and I pay my respects to the Elders, both past and present.

I can see most of you have been to the tents and visited Mrs Honeypot and her face painters and I hope you've left your wishes in the Royal Mark tent with Queen Paperbark.

If you haven't visited all the tents yet, there's also the green tent for computer games, the yellow tent where you can paint and decorate your colouring books and the red tent where the guessing games are being held.

Soon we'll be having prizes from the Guessing Competitions and then you'll join in the procession, everyone making their mark on the way to see the fabulous fireworks.

I want to thank the Girl Guides and Rovers who have been our special assistants here this evening, helping you to enjoy this wonderful picnic. This year, the Girl Guides celebrated their centenary and that's one hundred years of great activities and community service, so let's congratulate them.

I also thank Chips and the Magical Bikers Club of Kings Cross who as the Marks Men in the land of Bookmarks helped spray the magic colour into our guests' hair.

Bookmarks are how you mark your place in a book but in the Yolngu [yoo-gnu] language of northern Australia, the same-sounding word means "everyone".

So I wish everyone here a fantastic time tonight. Enjoy the music and all the activities, and have a very happy New Year.