The Bendigo Easter Fair Society has officially launched its sponsorship drive for the 150th Bendigo Easter Fair in 2020, with organisers hoping to create the city’s biggest and best Easter celebrations.

The society has been custodians of the Bendigo Easter Fair since 1871, with the first Easter Fair held on April 10 and 11, 1871 at the Lower Camp Reserve – about the location of the Conservatory Gardens.

The event was created to raise funds for the Bendigo Hospital and the Bendigo Benevolent Asylum.

Bendigo Easter Fair Society president Simon Mulqueen said the committee had been working hard on the additional elements they would like to implement in the program for 2020.

“Today we are seeking the support of business and the community to ensure this celebration of 150 years is a worthy one, and the society is calling on businesses large and small to get behind this initiative,” he said.

“In the last few weeks at least 400 proposals have been forwarded to businesses asking for their help in the form of sponsorship for the event.”

Mr Mulqueen said funds raised will go
directly toward the special elements planned to boost the festival which will return to a four-day format for the 2020 festival.

“It is only with the support of the business community, can we
expect to grow this event.”

Mr Mulqueen said a range of sponsorship packages were available, ranging from $900 (bronze), $3000 (silver), $6000 (gold) to $10,000 (150 partner), and can be paid over three financial years if that assists businesses.

“We will also accept any contributions business would like to make.

“This is a once in a lifetime celebration and we encourage all members of the community to get involved.”

The Easter Fair is recognised as the longest, continuously running community festival in Australia and is Bendigo’s largest annual tourist drawcard which injects millions of dollars into the local economy.

The Easter Fair Society handed the operational responsibility to the City of Greater Bendigo’s Events Department in 2004 due to the magnitude of the event, but
remains an integral part of the event’s planning.

Working with the City of Greater Bendigo, the society hopes to bring some special elements to 2020 that are either new or have not been seen for some years.

Mr Mulqueen also invited members of the community who have any Easter Fair memorabilia including photos, cards, medals, posters or documents that could be included in a major exhibition to contact the society via its website or email