Christmas in Colac Otway

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Christmas Tree Display - Memorial Square, Colac

Locally handcrafted and decorated Christmas trees will create a festive feel in Colac’s Memorial Square.

Colac timber processor AKD donated timber panels to build six Christmas trees, Colac Men’s Shed members made the tree stands, and Adam Harris Concreting donated weights for the tree bases.

Thirteen district schools were involved in decorating the colourful Christmas trees last year and they will bring creative Christmas cheer to Colac again in 2020.


A Very Special Christmas – Morning Music Goes Online & Free!

With the ever-popular Morning Music shows cancelled for this year, COPACC is presenting two Very Special Christmas concerts – in an online only, COVID-safe format!

The first concert showcases the much-loved musical talents of Roy Best, Alison Jones, Chris McKenna accompanied by pianist Will Schmidt.  

The Broadway I Love presented by Promac Productions (approximately 50 minutes) is an uplifting arrangement of all the songs we love to listen to.

This stellar cast is well-known to COPACC audiences, and was scheduled to present Salute to the ANZACs this year.

COPACC’s Christmas Morning Music show would have been a sell-out, and while we couldn’t invite the amazing Rhonda Burchmore to Colac this year, she has kindly recorded a few songs (approximately 18 minutes) and shout out to Colac Otway Shire from her home in Melbourne!

The link to the free recordings will be available through COPACC’s website, and can be accessed during the following times only – 9.30am–12noon on Thursday 10 December to
Sunday 13 December inclusive.

The limited time release is due to copyright, and has been granted with the kind permission of all performers.

Catch up with a friend, ask your tech-wise family members to set you up and watch the recordings once or as many times as you like during the release period. 


Christmas Card for your Neighbours

2020 has been a challenging year and it would be a kind gesture to deliver a Christmas card to a neighbour, whether you know them or they are new to your street or town.

Print your Happy Christmas Neighbour! card, write your name, drop it in your neighbour’s letterbox – and make someone’s day!

Happy Christmas Neighbour!(PDF, 6MB)  

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Lighting of the Norfolk Pine

The Apollo Bay Chamber of Commerce hosted the lighting of the Christmas Tree on the Apollo Bay foreshore on Saturday 28 November, proudly supported by Colac Otway Shire – the Norfolk Pine will shine brightly nightly through to the end of 2020.

Remember when visiting the ‘Bay to see the spectacle, stay COVID safe, keep your distance, keep a mask handy at all times and support the local businesses.


Christmas Banners - Murray Street, Colac 

Artwork contributed by students in Years 3 to 6 representing ten schools from across Colac Otway has been incorporated into this year’s Christmas Banner collection which will fly in Murray Street, Colac from the first week in December.

The banners are a credit to our talented young artists and we encourage everyone living in, or visiting Colac for their Christmas shopping, to take a stroll 


Red Rock's Decorated Hay Bale Trail

Congratulations to the Red Rock district on rolling out its Hay Bale Trail again this year!

Visit Red Rock's Decorated Hay Bale Trail for details.


Colac City Band - Carols By Candlelight (virtually)

Colac City Band is planning a COVID-safe Carols By Candlelight, with details to come at


Christmas Trading Hours Posters for Businesses

Free Trading Hours posters are available for businesses across the Shire from Colac Customer Assist Centre or GORVIC in Apollo Bay. This is a joint initiative of Colac Otway Shire Council and the Colac Herald. 


Christmas Lights

Residents across Colac Otway put on a light show like no other community when it comes to Christmas – and we expect this year will be equally as spectacular as previous Decembers!

And of course, jumping in a car with a friend or family member to tour the lights is completely COVID safe, and a great way to spend an evening.

Look out for addresses and information about local Christmas light displays on community Facebook pages.


From Little Things Big Things Grow...the story of Colac's Christmas Tree 

Earlier this year, when our community’s focus was on COVID19 pandemic, Colac Otway Shire’s Parks & Gardens Team put in place a plan for Christmas in Colac for years to come.

Inspired by Apollo Bay’s spectacular Lighting up the Norfolk Pine initiative in 2019 and 2020 (proudly sponsored by Colac Otway Shire), Council decided to source a Hoop Pine which will become a Christmas Tree in Memorial Square.

A great deal of thought went into the strategic location of Colac’s Hoop Pine – with the garden crew choosing an open space on the eastern side of the square, near the area where traditionally the Colac City Band hosts Carols by Candlelight.

The best planting time was July and we have received plenty of rain to help our ‘Christmas Tree’ become established. But July didn’t seem the appropriate time to be excited about the planting of our tree because of the challenges we were all facing.

Our Christmas Tree isn’t big enough for lights yet – and it will take a while – but it’s there for our future Christmases.


A K A Day with Mixx FM

Colac Otway Shire Council are proud to be working with Mixx FM / 3CS, Corangamite Shire and the Colac & District Chamber of Commerce & Industry to encourage the community to shop local this Christmas. 

Over 300 businesses have registered, shop local for your chance to win. For all the details visit: