Ebene News – UA – No fireworks, small crowds as 2020 draws to a close

After one of the most difficult years in the city’s history, there was no cathartic exit moment on New Years Eve in the form of 14,000 kilograms of bonfires fireworks exploding city skyscrapers

Pellegrini’s was one of the venues to take to the city streets as part of the street party program Credit: Photo: Tom Cowie

As with many other things, the coronavirus brought this to a halt, with authorities scrambling to dissuade people from gathering on the streets of the CBD on a day when a disturbing group dulled the enthusiasm of some people to party

The reintroduction of rules such as wearing masks indoors and closing the border with NSW reminded that the virus will not be gone by midnight on January 1

However, people still tried to make the most of it, as some of the city’s alleys have been turned into temporary outdoor restaurants as part of the City of Melbourne’s Street Feasts initiative

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“It’s fabulous, we had such a surprise walking down the street,” said Julie Hunt from Strathmore, who was dining under the glass roof outside Pellegrini’s

Despite the bad news on Thursday, Ms Hunt said there was some optimism in the air that things would improve in 2021

“I don’t think 2020 has been the best year we have had,” she said “Glad to see the end and just looking forward to 2021 – fingers crossed”

Pellegrini owner David Malaspina said the Street Eats initiative was a big success, with tables reserved all night

“I have happy people on New Years Eve so it’s really great so far,” he said

“Most people know there are no fireworks, it’s a bit disappointing But everyone is happy, everyone is smiling, having a good time”

In the rest of the city, there were few revelers on what would have been filled with fireworks another year

There were neither crowds nor revelers eager to see the fireworks from St Kilda beachCredit: Photo by Tom Cowie

The inner suburbs were also quiet, as revelers apparently followed the advice to stay home or attend a venue

Seagulls were almost more plentiful at St Kilda Beach, with the town’s most famous stretch of sand usually attracting picnickers on the last day of the year Nearby pubs such as the Esplanade were doing business roaring

In Edinburgh Gardens at Fitzroy North, a place known in the past for lively parties, there were only a handful of people on picnic blankets

Police and security guards monitored the only large gathering allowed in the park in the early evening: a big screen projection of the Paddington film

There was a small influx into the city streets around midnight, as lines of masked punters meandered along the paths outside nightclubs Police maintained a strong presence, which included officers on horseback

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New Year, Sydney, Australia, Coronavirus

Ebene News – UA – No fireworks, small crowds as 2020 draws to a close

Source: https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/no-fireworks-small-crowds-as-2020-limps-to-a-close-20201231-p56r49.html