The CBD will light up on Saturday 20 February for the latest instalment of White Night Melbourne. From 7pm to 7am, the town will again transform itself into a wonderland of light, film, art, design, fashion and music. From Southbank to Victoria Street, there will be 100s of activities to be enjoyed and an estimated crowd of 300,000 people to enjoy them with.
2016 will be…
The original White Night ran between Russell and Swanston, from Southbank to Bourke Street, with a few of the bigger institutions such as the State Library being classed as ‘outer limits’. It now runs across most of the city, all the way to Melbourne Museum.
Organisers and artists have had a few years to preapre. With 10 themed areas, a better understanding of what works, an extended playground and with the bar having been set, I think there is a good chance that this will be the biggest yet.
With more chance of getting home
Trains are running all night!
Tips for surviving the night
Plan the Night
If there are particular things to want to see, you will need to put a little bit of planning into the night. Start with the bigger free attractions early in the night, the middle sized attractions from 12-2am and the smaller more intimate performances after 2am. The White Night Website has a My Night app that allows you to plug in your favourite events and plan the night that way, however be prepared for things to go astray as can happen when three MCGs worth of people converge on the same spot.
Make it an easy stroll
On the other hand, if like me, you are rocking up without expectations , I recommendation you start at one end of Swanston Street, and simply stroll down the street. Remember you have all night, so take your time and be sure to stop and take in the sights and sounds along the way. Cut in and out of the laneways connecting Swanston and Elizabeth Street as there are many hidden attractions tucked away from the main drag. Remember to spend some time exploring the Southbank area.
Relax at Birrarung Marr
Last year, regardless of the time of night, there was always room in Birrarung Marr to sit and relax. The Marr has some smaller displays of art, sound and light making it a great place to recharge the batteries.
If you are a night-owl then consider going out for dinner (outside of Melbourne) or having a few drinks at home before coming in. The later you can stay out the quieter it will be. If you are an early riser you could even come in at 5.30am-6am.
Arrange a meet up spot Important!
This may come as a shock to Generation Facebook but there was once a time pre-mobile phones when meeting people involved picking a time and a place and sticking to it. Networks will be struggling, text messages will take an hour to send, phone calls wont be connecting so you may need to revisit this time-honoured tradition.
If you don’t like crowds, stay at home.
If you don’t like wall to wall crowds and not being able to move for half the night then you really are better off not going. You really have to be in the mood and prepared the experience.
It will be on again next week and the week after that
White Night is really just a bright, loud showcase of what is happening every week around Melbourne. The vast majority of artists involved in White Night will be performing and exhibiting their art throughout the year so always keep that in mind.