Due to budget constraints and insurance cost blow-outs, several free outdoor events in .Sydney no longer take place.

This is not the case with Buddha’s birthday, celebrating its 28th year at Tumbalong Park. Its principal sponsor and organiser is the Nan Kien Temple near Wollongong, the largest temple of its type in the Southern Hemisphere.

Apart from the fact that if you are a Buddhist this was a beautifully staged event for you to say your prayers or make wishes, it is also a feast for the eyes. By this I mean the many diverse food stalls and souvenir outlets from  several parts of South East Asia which encircle  Tumbalong Park. Accordingly if you favour a certain Asian cuisine you can most likely obtain it at Buddha’s birthday.

The same can be said of cultural showcases  with dancers  performing from Bali to Beijing.

Each year it gets bigger and better and this year  behind the performance area it had the biggest Buddha statue to date. Therefore I’m really looking forward to next year for more eye popping displays (weather permitting).

Pics by Ben Apfelbaum