Showcasing our shire and supporting residents during autumn

The award-winning Autumn Festival returns this April, showcasing towns across the Macedon Ranges through a range of new and returning trails, events, activities and participating business specials.

Joining the popular suite of tailored trails and regular markets this year from 5 to 28 April are the Live & Local in Community Halls series, celebrating locally based artists and community venues, and the Treasure Trail highlighting some of the region’s top leafy picnic spots.

Returning are the Autumn Pie and Tart Trail, the Food and Drink Passport, Tipple Trails and the Edgy Veg Trail, with the Woodend Visitor Information Centre the go-to festival hub.

Mayor Annette Death said the festival, now in its fourth year, was a growing celebration of the region’s natural beauty mixed with some of the best local, seasonal produce and performers.

“I’m unashamedly biased but proud in saying that the Macedon Ranges has so much to offer all year round, but there’s definitely something extra special in the air during autumn,” she said.

“Whether you’re a first-time visitor to our shire, a regular visitor or a resident, we encourage you to plan your trip in advance and enjoy all of what our beautiful towns have to offer.”

To specifically support Macedon and Mount Macedon residents and visitors during the busy autumn period, limited temporary measures will be reinstated along Honour Avenue and surrounds, following a comprehensive review that has prompted Council to refocus on its core responsibilities.

To help manage the influx of visitors, from late March through to 12 May (Mother’s Day weekend), temporary signage will be installed along Honour Avenue and other Council-managed roads, to clearly highlight – and enable Council officers to enforce – no parking zones.

Then from 29 March (Good Friday) through to Sunday 28 April, on weekends and public holidays, traffic management personnel will enforce a full road closure along the same section of road from 8am to 6pm, to support public safety and in anticipation of higher visitation on these days.

Extra toilet and waste facilities will also be provided in the immediate area, while residents/guests within the road closure area will be provided with exemption passes in addition to multilingual signage to display on their properties.

“The Autumn Festival helps to disperse visitors and economic benefits across the shire, but we acknowledge that people continue to be drawn to Honour Avenue and Council is working to proactively communicate expectations with visitors before they arrive,” Mayor Death said.

“We are committed to supporting residents and this year’s core safety measures reflect that, but it became clear that pursuing extended measures over the longer term would not be financially sustainable or responsible without external support.

“We are however working closely with our partner agencies, such as the Department of Transport and Planning and Victoria Police, on areas they are responsible for such as Mount Macedon Road and the Calder Highway, and providing advice to our local community groups and businesses who may wish to explore further temporary measures to improve amenity of the area on busy days.”

“I’d like to thank all those local residents and businesses who took the time to provide valuable feedback during our review, and we will continue to manage this peak period as best we can.”

Visit the dedicated Autumn Festival website for all the details, or follow Macedon Ranges Naturally Cool on Facebook and Instagram for updates. Live & Local has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Festivals Australia program.

For more information on the measures around Macedon and to sign up for direct email updates on these measures, visit the Autumn leaves and visitors page on Council’s website.

/Public Release. View in full here.