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WA Day Festival 2024 cancelled as Burswood Park waterlogged following Perth’s heavy rainfall

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Natalie RichardsThe West Australian
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Burswood Park has been waterlogged after recent rainfall.
Camera IconBurswood Park has been waterlogged after recent rainfall. Credit: Celebrate WA

The WA Day festival has been cancelled amid safety fears after Perth’s heavy rainfall.

Organisers Celebrate WA made the announcement on Thursday afternoon, saying recent storms had left Burswood Park waterlogged and unfit to host the two-day event on Sunday and Monday.

“We understand the disappointment this may cause and apologise for any inconvenience. The safety of our attendees, staff and performers is our top priority,” a statement read.

Burswood Park on Thursday.
Camera IconBurswood Park on Thursday. Credit: Iain Gillespie/The West Australian

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Burswood Park was set to host a free two-day long-weekend extravaganza, including fireworks, the State’s biggest drone shows and performances from musicians including Eskimo Joe, Guy Sebastian, The Waifs and Pond.

Premier Roger Cook had previously promised the event would be “bigger, better, and brighter than ever” with free public transport and countless family-friendly activities including sporting games and a dedicated barbecue and brew area.

But, pictures from the site this week showed the venue was sodden, filled with huge, muddy puddles.

Burswood Park has been waterlogged.
Camera IconBurswood Park has been waterlogged. Credit: Celebrate WA

Perth’s wet week is forecast to continue with up to 20mm of rain forecast on Saturday and up to 45mm on Sunday.

It follows flash flooding and storms across Western Australia, which saw more than 50mm of rain fall in the Perth city rain gauge in the past week alone.

Premier Roger Cook acknowledged the community “disappointment” and flagged the possibility of rescheduled event.

“We will work with the organisers and other key sponsors to potentially put on a free community event later in the year to celebrate our incredible State,” Mr Cook said.

Burswood Park is waterlogged.
Camera IconBurswood Park is waterlogged. Credit: Celebrate WA

“Thank you to everyone involved in helping organise these events and for your understanding in making this difficult decision. Stay safe and dry this long weekend WA.”

Singer Sebastian said he was “gutted” about the cancellation in a message to his 600,000 Instagram followers.

“Perth I am gutted about this! Promise to come and see you as soon as I can. Everyone stay safe,” he wrote.

It’s not the first time WA Day celebrations have been scuppered by wild weather.

Burswood Park is waterlogged.
Camera IconBurswood Park is waterlogged. Credit: Celebrate WA

Last year, festival organisers were forced to cancel a performance by headliner Amy Shark due to torrential rain.

Shark, who was due to close the festival on the Sunday, apologised to fans who had waited for her show.

“Go home and get dry, I’m so sorry,” the singer told the crowd.

WA Eurovision sensation Voyager also had their set cut put on hold by storms with the MC telling fans they didn’t want the stage equipment to “become massive lightning towers”.

Community celebrations in Albany, Carnarvon, Geraldton, Kalgoorlie, Fremantle and Northam will go ahead as planned, as will drone events in Busselton, Dampier and Newman.

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