By Rowan Forster
Crowds from Pakenham flocked to Diwali’s theme park extravaganza on Saturday, 10 November – marking the biggest event ever held by the Indian Association Casey Cardinia (IACC).
More than 3000 festivalgoers descended on Gumbuya World on Saturday for a night of extravagant music, food, rides and performances.
It comes after Star News in September reported that the Indian Association of Casey and Cardinia – that runs the event – was locked in a stalemate with council and struggling to secure a venue.
Volunteer Aanchal Meshram said it was extremely satisfying to turn a dire situation into one of Diwali’s biggest ever achievements.
“From a satisfaction perspective, we were so happy to see the smiles on people’s faces,” she said. ‘We had people from various different backgrounds who attended the event.
The kids had an absolute ball and so did the parents.
“People loved the cultural aspect and we had people travelling from Gippsland, the north and south suburbs and even from Sydney.”
The first-ever theme park Diwali was set into motion when Cardinia Shire requested the IACC bankroll a comprehensive traffic management study to use the PB Ronald Reserve, due to safety concerns surrounding nearby roads.