Open Day – Threads of our nation
9.00am–5.00pm Saturday 24 August 2013
Here is a taste of the things that will be happening at the 25th anniversary Open Day.
Watch this space as more items will be added leading up to the event.
Download the open day program (PDF, 406Kb)
Events, activities and displays
25 years on Capital Hill
On 9 May 2013 Parliament House turned 25. See what has changed in your national parliament over a quarter of a century.
Prime Minister's Office tours
See inside the Prime Minister's office and sitting room.
House of Representatives
Find out how the hung parliament changed the way the House of Representatives operates. Tour the chamber and the Speaker's courtyard and see the Mace, symbol of the House of Representatives, up close for the first time ever in the Speaker's Office.
Learn how Senate committees examine legislation and conduct broader inquiries and how the public can become involved. Tour the chamber, hear from senators about their work, and meet the President of the Senate while visiting his courtyard and office.
Parliamentary Education Office (PEO)
Wanted: members of parliament and parliamentary officers! Try on the costumes and participate in the PEO's parliament to see if you have what it takes to make laws for Australia.
The Parliamentary Library
Visit the library and hear about the incredible research services they provide to members and senators.
My First Speech competition winning speeches
The winning entrants of the My First Speech competition for year 10 to 12 students will deliver their speeches live at Open Day.
The Speaker's University Challenge
This inaugural event will see the Australian National University debate Melbourne University on whether the House is representative. Who will win the Speaker's trophy?
Parliament House roof walk and flag encounter
For the first time in many years, visitors will have the opportunity to take a walk from the Parliament House Forecourt to the roof, enjoying the spectacular views of Canberra along the way, and perhaps even reliving childhood memories of fun times spent on the lawns. On the roof, visitors will be able to hear all about one of Canberra's most iconic features, the Parliament House Flag. Throughout the day there will be opportunities to see the flag up close and participate in flag activities in the Great Hall.
Broadcasting the Parliament
Think it's easy being a politician? Put yourself under the lights and see how you go. Let the Broadcasting studio put you into the virtual chamber so you can address the Australian public.
Parliament House Events and Facilities Display
Stand behind the Prime Minister's lectern, sit at the official signing table, see the table setting for an official visit and view the international flags recognising the official visits to Parliament House during the 43rd Parliament.
Meet a Builder
Visitors will have the opportunity to hear from people who were involved in the construction of Parliament House in a series of pop-up talks.
Parliament House Art Services
Parliament House is home to some of Australia's finest artworks. Learn more about specific works of art that form part of this special collection and speak with some of the people that look after it.
Every word of the debates of Parliament must be recorded, find out how this has been done over the years and put the current voice recognition technology to the test!
Take a tour of the private courtyards, led by one of the knowledgeable members of the Landscape Services Team.
Basement Tours - Carpentry Workshop
Take an underground adventure to the carpentry workshop and find out about the work that goes into maintaining the building.
Sun Kite and colour poem banners
Peter Travis AM, colourist and consultant to Mitchell, Giurgola and Thorp has contributed his sun kite and eighteen colour poem banners to be hung in the Great Hall on Open Day. A video interview with him describing how he designed the colours for Parliament House will be screened at the Artists Corner, in the Queen's Terrace Gallery on level 1 on the day.
Building Management System Display
A glimpse into the high-tech operation and plant equipment systems used to keep the building in good running order.
Key to the House
Even Australia’s Parliament House has a key to the front door! See the key used by Queen Elizabeth II to open Parliament House for the very first time on display in the Main Foyer.
DISCOUNTS ALL DAY AT THE PARLIAMENT SHOP
The Parliament Shop will offer a 20% discount on all items except commemorative coins on Open Day 2013. This discount cannot be claimed in conjunction with any other offer.
Music by Dewayne Everettsmith
Dewayne recently became the voice of Tourism Australia's international marketing campaign – his voice and song the centrepiece of the new $250M global advertising blitz. The ad, built around Dewayne's “It's Like Love” has received 20,000,000 views since going online on June 4th.
He's an Aboriginal man, descended from both the Aboriginal community of Cape Barren Island and the Gunai/Kurnai people of Victoria, but his music can't be neatly pigeonholed as Indigenous. It's been influenced by his heritage, then shaped by his tough early years and love of so many musical styles and great singers.
Dewayne will be performing solo at 9.30am and in his duo at 2.00pm
Welcome to our meeting place by the Jarmbies (Friends in Wiradjuri)
Music for the Australian Bush by Franklyn B Paverty
Choir performances by Sing Australia and Canberra Youth Music
Meet the Artists that created works in your Parliament House
Artists expected to participate.
Mr Robert and Dr Rhyl Hinwood – Coat of Arms, House of Representatives Chamber
Cameron Williams – Ceremonial Pots Members' Hall and Senate President's Courtyard
David Upfill-Brown – Speaker's Chair, House of Representatives Chamber
Michael Nelson Jagamara is no longer able to attend.
Food and Beverages available at Open Day
- The café will be open for coffee and cake from 10.00am to 3.00pm
Parliament House catering by IHG
- The Queen's Terrace Café on the first floor will be serving coffee, cake and light meals from 9.00am to 4.30pm
- The Staff Dining Room on the ground floor will be serving a family BBQ as well as hot and cold food and beverage selections
- Parliament House Catering by IHG will hold a VIP three course lunchtime dining experience in the Members' Guests Dining Room on Open Day. For bookings and inquiries visit the Parliament House Catering by IHG website or phone (02) 6277 5132.
Free parking is available in the underground car park at the front of Parliament House, along Federation Mall and in the East Block and West Block car parks off Queen Victoria Terrace.
Due to anticipated demand, parking in the underground car park is not guaranteed.