(12.15pm 20 May 2012, Pirrama Park)
Thank you, Nell Schofield, MC. Welcome to this great celebration of Mudgee food and wine and Sydney creativity! I'd like firstly to acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, the traditional custodians of our land, and to pay my respects to their Elders. I also acknowledge the 200 nationalities who make up our city.
It's also acknowledge Lawrence Gibbons, president of the Pyrmont-Ultimo Chamber of Commerce, and Mike O'Malley from the NSW Wine Industry Association.
This is the second year the City has supported the festival in its 10-day format and it's great to see it grow into such a terrific collaboration between the small-scale wine and food producers of Mudgee, local businesses in Pyrmont-Ultimo, and the people of this community.
This year there are two new elements to the festival - and special thanks to Sherryl Ryan, whose idea they were.
There is the terrific exhibition of children's art from schools in Glebe, Ultimo, Forest Lodge, Waterloo and Darlington - and the "Theme is Green", looking at our environment, at transport, buildings and global communities. Thanks to the Chamber of Commerce for providing the canvases to the schools.
There is also the fabulous Tour de Pyrmont, an "art on wheels" competition - also with a green theme. Nell - who has been a City Cycling Ambassador - will be judging that.
And there's an exhibition from 11 Mudgee artists; there's entertainment and a special children's area, and of course there's wine, food and fabulous Mudgee produce to be enjoyed here today.
So welcome to our country cousins, and have a great day, everyone! I'm delighted to declare the Mudgee Wine & Food Fair and the Pyrmont Art Prize open.