This morning I launched our 2013 Sydney New Year's Eve celebration. By combining Reg Mombassa's unique creativity with the Foti family's pyrotechnic skills, this Sydney New Year's Eve is set to be inspiring, daring and colourful.
We're expecting another spectacular fireworks display. I'm told the top-secret Sydney Harbour Bridge Effect - based on Reg's artwork symbolising the event's Shine theme - is one definitely not to be missed.
This year the Bridge Effect, which forms the centrepiece of the 9PM Family Fireworks and Midnight Fireworks displays, will be twice as big as in previous years and will use new LED technology. Made up of 16 kilometres of rope light, it will be as tall as a 12-storey building and 72-metres wide.
As part of this year's event over 1,000 fireworks will be launched from the sails of the Sydney Opera House, using specially designed pyrotechnics to protect the world-famous building's tiles. This is the first time in more than a decade that the Opera House will be part of the fireworks display.
The fireworks were developed specifically for the event by Foti Fireworks, and will not scorch the building's delicate tiled exterior, as it celebrates its 40th anniversary year.
It's terrific that we are marking the 40th anniversary of Sydney Opera House in the best way that Sydney NYE knows how - with specially-designed fireworks, firing from the world-famous sails.
Each year, tourists and Sydneysiders ask us whether they're able to take home a special memory of Sydney New Year's Eve, so I'm delighted this year we have a special piece of memorabilia available.
In an Australian first, coloured holograms will capture the 2013 Sydney New Year's Eve fireworks celebrations on a special edition collector's coin, developed by the Royal Australian Mint.
The $1 silver proof coin will capture the image of the Shine-themed Sydney Harbour Bridge Effect and is sure to become a real collector's item. It will be the first in a 10-year series to be released on 1 January each year.
I encourage everyone to plan ahead for a fantastic night. Visit the official New Year's Eve website www.sydneynewyeraseve.com to find out the best locations, transport options, timings for celebrations and fireworks and much more.