Pyrmont Festival

(Pirrama Park)

Thank you, Wendy Fitzsimmons, MC and hello, everyone. Welcome to our wonderful Pirrama Park. I would like firstly 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 would also like to acknowledge City Councillors, and representatives of Tourism NSW and the Pyrmont Ultimo Chamber of Commerce. And I would like to offer a special welcome to the Mudgee Region Tourism officers, Mudgee Council representatives and the Mudgee Wine Grape Growers' Association. Welcome to Sydney!

Today is the culmination of the first Pyrmont Uncorks Mudgee festival - celebrating the combination of great food and fine wine spread across this unique part of Sydney.

As I said at the launch, Pyrmont is increasingly becoming recognised as a foodie destination and today there are over 120 different wines from about 30 Mudgee wine makers to be sampled, along with some delicious food tastings.

And the grand finale is here in the park as part of the Pyrmont Arts Festival.

There's terrific music - including from the immensely talented locals "Pyrmont Sings Choir" - who performed earlier and the Pyrmont Three Jazz Band, which will follow into the afternoon.

And at the centre is the Small is Beautiful art show - over 200 artworks on canvases just 12 by 12 inches. Some eminent judges have been looking at the works and there is over $10,000 worth of prizes to be won - as well as a People's Choice Award, so don't forget to lodge a vote.

There is also a great display of work from local primary and secondary schools which is not to be missed.

Together, the food, wine, music and art express something of the spirit of Sydney, and of Pyrmont.

It is a real creative hub of media, design, internet and advertising houses, as well as home to the ABC and the Powerhouse Museum and today, close to 100,000 people live, work or study here, giving it one of the largest day-time populations in the City.

The density promotes vitality and supports the many businesses in the area - but it also demands quality open spaces to make the density workable. I'm proud that the City saved this fantastic waterfront peninsula from being just another housing development.

It provides stunning open space - not only for local people but for people who come from all over Sydney to enjoy it and it has won - deservedly - a number of awards for its design.

It's a great place to enjoy a Sydney weekend, to take part in the Pyrmont Arts Festival and I hope you will enjoy it today and - if you're not already a local - take time to get to know this fascinating part of our City.

Have a great day, everyone!