And so we come to the end of another year. A year of the Higgs boson, the London Olympics, continuing economic crisis, mega elections, natural disasters and a space-jumping daredevil. We said a sad goodbye to Lonesome George, the last surviving Pinta Island Tortoise, and laughed along with a South Korean determined to show the world how to ride an invisible horse. Throughout the year we mourned, and continue to mourn, the victims of conflicts around the world. On a personal note, I would like to send my love and hopeful wishes to my friends in Syria. For a domestic take on the past year, head to The Monthly website. They’ve put together some great ‘Best of’…’ reads, videos, cartoons and photographs from 2012. I hope 2013 will be safe, memorable and rewarding for you all. Here’s to a new year filled with rich experiences, peace, learning and creativity. سنة جديدة سعيدة Godt Nyttår 新年好 sretna nova godina с Новым годом Gelukkig Nieuwjaar onnellista uutta vuotta masaya bagong taon heureuse nouvelle année שנה טובה ευτυχισμένο το νέο έτος …
If you haven’t already made plans for tomorrow, head to Federation Square for the third annual RISE Festival. The not-for-profit organisation behind this festival is the first asylum seeker and refugee advocacy group to be run by refugees, asylum seekers and ex-detainees themselves — an initiative well worth supporting. There will be family-friendly music, stalls, food and activities. For more information about the festival or the organisation, visit the 2012 RISE Festival facebook page or the RISE website. 2012 RISE Festival Where: Federation Square, Melbourne Vic 3000 When: 15 December 2012, 1pm–8pm Free
At 12pm today, National Indigenous Television (NITV) launched free-to-air on Channel 34. Tune in and lend your support to this great initiative, which is providing a much-needed training ground and creative outlet for our indigenous media professionals. You can read more about the launch here. A worthy piece of news to get The Melbourne Local rolling again after a fairly long hiatus, methinks. I hope you’re all enjoying the silly season.