Celebrating our seniors

This month our city will pay tribute to the older members of the community in celebration of the 34th Victorian Seniors Festival, from Sunday, October 2 to Sunday, October 9. 

The festival aims to recognise the contribution older people have made, and continue to make, to our community and highlight the importance of providing support to our ageing population.

The theme of this year’s festival is “diversity – expressed creatively in many ways” and will deliver a wide range of events including concerts, exhibitions, cultural tours and social gatherings. Most of the program is free or inexpensive and Public Transport Victoria is offering free public transport for all Victorian Seniors Card holders for the duration of the festival.

Melbourne Town Hall will host the festival hub where attendees can drop by for a free tea or coffee and catch one of 10 concerts happening at 11am and 2pm daily or get a free health check at the RDNS Healthy Pit Stop. There will be a series of entertainment and information sessions held in the Yarra Room throughout the week, including laughter yoga, Keeping Active and an afternoon of short play readings and storytelling. The hub will be open from 10am - 4.30pm, Monday, October 3 to Friday, October 7.

Twelve musicians will transport seniors back to yesteryear as they entertain and delight through their big band sound at the Festival Big Band Dance from 12.30pm - 4pm on, Monday, October 3 at the Melbourne Town Hall. There’ll be free cloak room facilities and a huge dance floor (with seating around the perimeter for dance breaks) to boogie the afternoon away.

Events celebrating the older LGBTI community include a Queer History Walk at 11am on Monday, October 3, and New Moves: High Tea for LGBTI elders and their allies with the Commissioner for Gender and Sexuality and the Commissioner for Senior Victorians at 2pm on Friday, October 7.

Artist Emma Salzano has created an interactive exhibition especially for grandparents and grandchildren in her piece Wonderland presented at ArtPlay, open from 10.30am - 11.15am and 11.45am - 12.30pm on Thursday, October 6.

Music enthusiasts will be kept content at Federation Square with a series of lunchtime concerts at Deakin Edge on Monday, October 3 and Tuesday, October 4, and film buffs can enjoy $5 movie tickets for morning and matinee sessions at the Seniors Film Festival at ACMI.

And there’s no tech issue too small for the friendly librarians at the City Library who are offering free one-on-one troubleshooting sessions of up to 45 minutes as part of the Book a Librarian event on Monday, October 3.

The 2016 Victorian Seniors Festival is accessible, inclusive and set to be a highlight for the CBD’s older (yet young-at-heart) residents. Visit seniorsonline.vic.gov.au to view the event calendar and find out more.

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