Australia Day Awards nomination information & events

Australian flag - Picnic Point

Show your national colours and pride by flying the flag at any of the Toowoomba Region’s community-run Australia Day events on January 26. 

The free festivities are an ideal way to join fellow Aussies to celebrate our good fortune to live in this great part of Australia. We’d love residents to join the community activities where we celebrate our diverse society, reflect on our achievements and re-commit to making Australia an even better place for everyone. 

Our regional achievers will be announced and honoured at small ceremonies before residents are invited to join a variety of free entertainment and activities.



Australia Day events - Friday 26 January

When: Friday 26 January - 7 to 12pm

Where: Centenary Park, Charlotte Street, Crows Nest 


  • 7am - Music starts (Cloud 9)
  • 7am - Breakfast
  • 8.45am - Waltzing Matilda re-enactment
  • 9am - Awards presentation
  • 9.30am - Music and bush dancing (Cloud 9)
  • 10am - Morning tea

When: Friday 26 January - 8 to 10.30am

Where: Cambooya Recreation Grounds, Lucy Street, Cambooya

Program: Free breakfast will be available from 8am and the ceremony will start at 9am.

When: Friday 26 January 2018 - 7am to 9.30am

Where: F. E. Logan Hall, Meara Place, Clifton, 7 to 9.30am

Program: Free breakfast will be served from 7am and the ceremony will start at 8am.

When: Friday 26 January 2018


Goombungee Public Hall

  • 8.30am - Community breakfast and entertainment, vocalist performance, jumping castle and face painting.
  • 9am - National anthem
  • 10am - Awards ceremony

Goombungee pool

  • 11am to 6pm - Pool party at Goombungee Pool. Free entry, inflatable fun, canteen and sausage sizzle.

When: Friday 26 January 2018 - 8am to 5pm

Where: Highfields Pioneer Village, 73 Wirraglen Road, Highfields


Billy tea & damper all day

  • 9am - Aboriginal art talks, entertainment by Trevor Dodds
  • 9:30am - Milking the cow, separating & butter making
  • 10am - Official opening of the bakery
  • 10:15am  - Schools in  
  • 10:30am - Working draft horse
  • 10:45am - Sheep shearing and official opening of the shearing shed                
  • 10:50am - Family games & sheaf tossing competition
  • 11am - Tour of the Toowoomba Fire Brigade Museum
    11:20am - Rope making
  • 11:30am - Bee keeping demonstration, Aboriginal dance workshop: Don Nikkelson, Blazer Bear the lovable mascot from the fire brigade visits
  • Noon - Lunch break, damper making demonstration and competition and judging of period costumes
  • 12:30pm - Music by Cactoblastis and a visit from Ned Kelly!
  • 1pm - Whip cracking school
  • 1:15pm - Farmer’s ingenuity show
  • 1:25pm - Family games
  • 1:30pm - Wheel tyring at the blacksmith's shop
  • 2pm - Official ceremony for Australia Day
    • Welcome by MC: Gordon Patterson- Highfields FM
    • Didgeridoo performance by Don Nikkelson
    • Flag raising by scouts, guides and singing of national anthem
    • Affirmation and welcoming of new citizens by Hon. Trevor Watts MP
    • Awards Presentation by Mayor Paul Antonio, Cr. Bill Cahill & Senator Moore 
    • Damper making competition prize presentation by Mervyn Polzin
    • Woolworths colouring competition prize presentation 
    • Official ceremony ends with "Home among the gum trees"
  • 2:30pm to 3:30pm - Free billy tea and damper
  • 3:30pm to 5pm - Entertainment by Cactoblastis, sponsored by Bendigo Bank


  • Blacksmithing
  • Tinsmithing
  • Silversmithing
  • Animal nursery
  • Pioneer toys
  • Model  trains
  • Stationary engines
  • Markets
  • Raffles
  • Sausage sizzle
  • Food & drinks
  • Billy tea and damper
  • Scouts and guides
  • Music by T Dodds, Cactoblastis
  • Aboriginal art display
  • Didgeridoo performance by Don Nikkelson.

When: January 26 - 7am to 9.30am

Where: Millmerran Lions Park, Mary Street 7am

Program: Awards from 9.30am with games and other activities to follow.

When: January 26 - 7.30am to noon

Where: Arthur Shooter Park, Stanley Street, Oakey


  • 7:30 am - Breakfast on sale and entertainment
  • 8:30 am - Oakey District Australia Day Awards Ceremony                                                                
  • 9:45 am - Free morning tea                      
  • 10am - Celebrations begin including: billy boiling competition, camp oven cooking demonstration, billy cart time trials, open Iron Man, junior raft race, family sack race, thong throwing, junior iron man, lamington eating, open raft race
  • 12:30 - Entertainment

When: January 26 - 7am to 12pm

Where: Pittsworth Pioneer Village, Pioneer Way, Pittsworth

Program: Awards ceremony at 9am. Other attractions include – Postle gift sprint, Ridgy Didge Bush Band, many games and activities for adults and children, breakfast available (tea, coffee, damper and more)

When: January 26 - 8am to 1pm

Where: Picnic Point, Tourist Road, Toowoomba

  • 8am - welcome to country and smoking ceremony
  • 8.30am - flag raising ceremony and national anthem supported by Sing Australia, billy tea, damper & lamingtons, kids rides, face painting
  • 8.35am - Toowoomba Municipal Band
  • 8.48am - Australia Day Prayer, Mayoral welcome and flag presentation
  • 9am - Toowoomba Municipal Band
  • 9.35am - awards ceremony
  • 10am - entertainment through to noon and meet characters from the past
  • 11am - sausage sizzle & watermelons
  • Noon headline act – Irish Group “Around the Corner"
  • 1pm - end


Clean Up Australia Day

Yarraman: Errol Munt Park

Meeting point: Errol Munt Park, Margaret Street, Yarraman, between the toilet block and tennis courts. 

What to bring: Please bring gloves, hat and sunscreen.

Time: 7.30 am to 10am

Site coordinator: Glenda Stimpson,


Australia Day pool parties


Australia Day awards

We are a proud supporter of Australia Day, coordinating and assisting local committees in planning and conducting Australia Day events. The awards are administered by local committees, a coordinating committee and an awards committee on behalf of the Toowoomba Regional Council.

Australia Day awards are presented annually on Australia Day to local citizens and groups who have made outstanding contributions to their community. The awards operate at two levels – local and regional. Local Australia Day committees select each local award category winner and may forward nominations to the awards committee to be considered for a regional award.

Nominations close 31 October each year.

Australia Day Awards nomination form (online)

Australia Day Awards nomination form (PDF).

Award categories

  • Citizen of the Year
  • Young Citizen of the Year
  • Cultural Award
  • Sports Award (Junior and Senior)
  • Community Group / Event of the Year
  • Citizen of the Year - Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander.

Citizen of the year criteria:

  • Nominee resides in the council area
  • Nominee is older than 26 years of age as at January 26 in the award year
  • Activities result in short and long-term benefits and promote the welfare and wellbeing of the (local or regional) community
  • Provides a positive role model for others
  • Contributions being completed on a voluntary basis or exceeding the normal requirements of the person's paid work

Young citizen of the year criteria:

  • Nominee resides in the council area
  • Nominee is not older than 26 years of age as at January 26 in the award year
  • Activities result in short and long term benefits and promote the welfare and wellbeing of the (local or regional)community
  • Providing a positive role model for others
  • Contributions being completed on a voluntary basis or exceeding the normal requirements of the person's paid work

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander - Citizen of the year criteria:

  • Nominee resides in the Council area
  • Nominee is a person of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent
  • Activities result in short and long-term benefits and promote the welfare and wellbeing of the (local or regional)community
  • Provides a positive role model for others
  • Contributions being completed on a voluntary basis or exceeding the normal requirements of the person's paid work

Cultural award criteria:

  • Nominee resides in the Council area
  • Level of contribution to, and achievement in, local or regional cultural life and activities. Examples include, but are not limited to: performing/visual arts, literary, and historical conservation.

Sports award criteria:

  • Nominee resides in the Council area
  • Major sporting achievement or significant contribution to sports administration (including coaches and officials).

Community group / event of the year award criteria:

  • Group resides in the Council area
  • Delivery of outstanding community service
  • Purpose of event and outcome achieved
  • Impact of event/group activity on local or regional community
  • Level of community participation
  • Reflection of Australian values

  • Nominations must be submitted on our official nomination forms (posted or electronically submitted).
  • In the event that no nominations are received in any of the categories, the relevant committee reserves the right to extend the nomination period or make the award to an individual, event or group of its choice.
  • Awards will not be granted after death.
  • Sitting local, state and federal politicians and current vice-regal officers are not eligible.
  • Nominations can be made for only one local area e.g. a person cannot be nominated in two districts. Selection panels may choose to contact the nominee to determine which jurisdiction is most appropriate.
  • A person would not usually be awarded the same award more than once; however, a repeat award may be made in exceptional circumstances. In this case, particular consideration will be given to work undertaken since the last time the person was awarded - the award should not be given twice in recognition of the same work. Community Groups can be considered for repeat awards.
  • Unsuccessful nominees may be re-nominated in subsequent years.
  • The decision of the Australia Day Committee is final and no correspondence will be entered into in regards to that decision.

When you fill out the nomination form, there are a few things you should consider to ensure your nomination provides us with enough information about the achievements of the person you are nominating. Here are some hints to help you get started:

  • Fill out as much of the form as possible. Even if you do not know the person you are nominating well, try to provide as much detail as you can.
  • If possible include the nominee's date of birth. If you are not certain of the person's date of birth, then make an educated guess and insert an approximate age.
  • Include any supporting documentation with your nomination. This can include personal references, portfolios, resumes, newspaper articles, etc.
  • Please do not nominate the same person more than once for the same award. Recipients are selected based on selection criteria, rather than the number of times they are nominated.

Nominee's details

The nomination form provides space for the nominee's details. In providing this information, consider the following:

  • In what area and/or roles has the person excelled?
  • How does the person stand out from the pack? How has their achievement/service been greater than what might be normally expected of a person their age and in their field? Focus on both the quality and quantity of their achievement/service.
  • How much of their work has been voluntary, focused on helping others or making their local community a better place?
  • Has the person overcome particular challenges or adversities to make their achievement? How difficult has their achievement been?
  • How has the nominee shown achievement/service outside of their particular specialty? For example, personal interests and involvement in the wider community.
  • How has the nominee's achievement/service been acknowledged elsewhere - other awards, commendations etc?
  • How does the person nominated make you proud to be Australian? Is your view shared by others in your community? If so, who?
  • What personal qualities make the person inspirational?
  • Why should other Australians look to the person as a role model?
  • Has the person shown great bravery, vision or particular strengths of character?

Provide examples

Provide examples to support your statements for all of the above. Don't just make a statement - demonstrate it with examples. To help you get started here is an example of an answer that provides a great amount of information:

At 22 years Christina is an outstanding young dancer and shares her passion for the arts with the community of Pittsworth, particularly through the Youth Ballet Company. Since 13 Christina has won overall best dancer in the Toowoomba Eisteddfod, and in 2002 obtained first place in the National Ballet Eisteddfod held in Perth. Christina has been accepted into the Australian Ballet Company but has decided to stay in the local area to teach dance to the youth.
Throughout her training, she has faced the isolation of being a ballet dancer a long way from the big companies based in the southern states. She worked two part time jobs to raise the funds to travel south each Christmas to undertake intensive classes.
Christina is the lead dancer for the Youth Ballet Company and has recently choreographed two short ballets. Christina was the driving force behind a tour to Tenant Creek and to Alice Springs in September last year and she is planning a tour to Alice Springs again this year.
Christina is not only an exceptional dancer; she is committed to building the local arts community. All of Christina's work with the Youth Ballet has been voluntary. I estimate that she has spent at least 20 hours per week for the past four years working with the younger dancers in the company.
Christina shows that the arts are alive and well in rural Australia. She continues to combine her talents and passion for the arts to promote dance. Through my son who is a member of the Youth Ballet Company I can see that she has changed the lives of many young people. She has given them the opportunity to express themselves in dance and the company has grown as a result of her involvement. All of the members and parents are inspired by her passion, drive and great skill as a leader and as a dancer.
She is a role model to her younger dancers and I believe to all of those associated with the company. She is an outstanding young Australian.

Supporting documentation

If you are nominating, you can attach supporting documentation to the form. Supporting documentation can include:

  • Personal references
  • Portfolios
  • Resumes
  • Newspaper articles 

Requesting further information or help to fill out the nomination form

You can contact any of the region’s community liaison officers on 131 872 or by emailing us for assistance filling out the nomination form.

Please contact Council’s central telephone number of 131 872 or by email

Cambooya and Clifton Districts - Contact: Sarah Rossiter
Crows Nest and Highfields Districts - Contact: Lisa Goodman
Millmerran & Cecil Plains Districts - Contact: Linda Weymouth
Oakey District - Contact: David Totenhofer
Pittsworth District - Contact: Ann D'Arcy
Rosalie & Yarraman Districts - Contact: Bronwyn Holland
Toowoomba District - Contact: Breanna McCarthy or Simon Underwood


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