Fun day to mark cottage opening

MONTHS of hard work comes to an end this Sunday when Emmaville Cottage, thought to be Banjo Paterson’s birthplace, will be officially opened to the public.

To celebrate the opening, and the inaugural Banjo Paterson Festival, a family fun day will be held at the site.

The relocation and restoration of the historic building has been a project of the Rotary Club of Orange and countless other volunteers.

Rotary club president Len Banks said he was excited to officially hand over the keys of the cottage to Orange City Council.

“Handing it over to the people of Orange is a great thing,” he said.

“I’m excited being a part of the project, it’s been very successful from our point of view.”

In May, 2013, the cottage was moved from its original site near Waratahs Sportsgound to its new location near the Adventure Playground.

Since then cottage has undergone an internal and external overhaul bringing it back to what it would have looked like in 1864, the year of Banjo’s birth.

The family fun day will mark the opening with poetry readings, live music, a barbecue and market stalls.

“It was always our intention that the Rotary project would be to relocate and renovate [the cottage] and it’s [now] in a precinct that families use,” Mr Banks said.

“This will be the first opportunity to go and have a look at the cottage.”

Past residents of the cottage have been invited to come along and talk about their memories of the cottage and will also be part of the official opening.

The family fun day will be held from 9am to 2pm with entertainment provided by November Shorn, students from Canobolas Rural Technology High School and roving poets.

Entry is free and families are encouraged to bring along a picnic and enjoy the day.

The Banjo Paterson Festival concludes on Monday February 17.

For more information or the  program visit www.tasteorange.com.au.

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