Australia Day 2022 banner image

Port Stephens to celebrate its biggest Australia Day yet

11 January 2023

With events planned at 4 locations across the local government area, Port Stephens is set to celebrate its biggest Australia Day yet, with Citizenship Ceremonies, live music, markets, marching bands, pool parties and fireworks.

Mayor Ryan Palmer is inviting the community to attend an event, reflect on our achievements, and celebrate Port Stephens and the people who make it great.

“This year’s theme is Reflect. Respect. Celebrate. which encourages locals to reflect on our history, respect the stories of others, and celebrate Port Stephens, our achievements and our people,” Mayor Palmer said.

“Right across the LGA, there’ll be something for everyone. There’s a big Aussie breakfast, live music, kids entertainment, markets and displays by the RAAF, Rural Fire Service, and NSW Fire Brigade. The traditional Civic Ceremonies, including Citizenship Ceremonies and Annual Awards will also take place as usual.

“I’m excited and honoured to officially welcome our region’s 83 newest Australians as they take the pledge in front of friends and family this 26 January,” he said.

Once the formalities are over, celebrations will continue with pool parties at Lakeside Leisure Centre and Tilligerry Aquatic Centres, with celebrations culminating in a fireworks display at Karuah at 9pm.

Mayor Palmer also announced the 2023 Port Stephens Australia Day Ambassador as Professor Heidi Norman, a descendant of the Gomeroi people from north western NSW, and a leading Australian researcher and Aboriginal political historian.

“Professor Norman has led research in the field of Aboriginal political history and has made significant contributions to understanding Aboriginal social, cultural, economic and political history,” he said.

Professor Norman says that teaching has been her passion and focus of her work for more than 2 decades at the University of Technology Sydney.

“The three strands of our Australian story – our ancient heritage, British inheritance, and multicultural triumph – are unique in the world,” said Professor Norman.

“For many generations the telling of this history was described as ‘the great Australian silence’; still today my students, after a semester studying Aboriginal history, ask: ‘Why weren’t we told? Why didn’t we know?’.

“The lens of history helps me comprehend the present. It’s the knowledge of the past that helps me make informed decisions.

“I look forward to sharing about my story and passion this Australia Day as the 2023 Port Stephens Australia Day Ambassador.” Heidi added.

Australia Day events in Port Stephens:

  • Karuah – Karuah RSL from 10am, with fireworks at 9pm
  • Nelson Bay – Fly Point from 9am to 3pm
  • Raymond Terrace – Riverside Park from 8am to 1:30pm & Free Pool Party at Lakeside Leisure Centre from 10am to 4pm
  • Tilligerry – Henderson Park Lemon Tree Passage from 8am to 12pm & Free Pool Party at Tilligerry Aquatic Centre from 10am to 4pm

These events are proudly brought to you by:

  • The Australia Day Council
  • Port Stephens Council
  • Tilligerry Lions Club
  • Raymond Terrace Rotary Club
  • Karuah RSL
  • The Nelson Bay Australia Day Committee
  • Belgravia Leisure

Supported by:

  • Raymond Terrace Bowling Club
  • Marquis
  • Port Stephens Coaches
  • Veolia
  • Saxby’s Bakery

For full details and events program visit