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Museum shares Aboriginal riches during NAIDOC Week

By James Bennett

Australia’s first Aboriginal museum opened its doors to the public yesterday as NAIDOC Week celebrations continue.

Hundreds streamed through the Bangerang Cultural Centre, allowing people to explore the amazing array of artworks, historical artefacts, stories and dioramas.

The morning started with the traditional welcome to country and a speech by Uncle Kevin Atkinson, discussing local Aboriginal history, and a performance by the Damanmu Dance Group.

Centre chairperson Miranda Edwards also provided a welcome to all visitors.

Mrs Edwards said she was thrilled with the turnout of people.

‘‘It’s quite busy, people are enjoying the museum and what it represents,’’ Mrs Edwards said.

‘‘We have artefacts from right across Australia which is really unique so it’s lovely to share our culture with the visitors.

‘‘We always know Bangerang is well-supported and days like this community day for NAIDOC Week help more locals show their support.’’

Mrs Edwards said the day was just as important for many young children to learn about Aboriginal culture.

‘‘Learning about our First Nation’s people is really important for anyone.

‘‘We have children from all ages who have visited today because it’s significant with thousands of years of culture.

‘‘Children are fascinated by it and have been asking how we lived off the lands, dance, art and the animals,’’ Mrs Edwards said.

Check out the Greater Shepparton City Council website for more details on NAIDOC Week events.