Another three-day weekend is just around the corner for residents of NSW, SA, NT, the ACT, Victoria and Tasmania at least with the Queen’s Birthday public holiday falling on June 8.
Queenslanders will celebrate the Queen’s Birthday until later this year on October 5, while those in Western Australia will get their holiday on September 28 this year.
So what will be open this long weekend?
On Monday June 8, it will be business as usual despite the Queen’s Birthday holiday for all Woolworths stores in NSW except 33 George Street, Sydney Metcentre, North Sydney, Castle Hill and York Street, which will be closed.
All Woolies stores in Victoria will be open except Melbourne Central, Bourke St, Collins Square and Swanston Street, and every Woolies outlet in the ACT, Tasmania, South Australia and the Northern Territory will also trade as normal, although customers are encouraged to check the Queen’s Birthday opening hours of their local Woolworths here.
Most Coles and Aldi stores are also expected to open as usual, but check the website for your local opening hours.
Westfield Living Centres are open on Monday, June 8 for the Queen’s Birthday Long Weekend, although Aussies should visit their local centre’s website for the most up-to-date retailer information and trading hours.
In NSW, all Westfield Living Centres will open at 10am, but closing hours will differ.
In Victoria, all centres will open from 10am to 5pm, while in the ACT they will trade from 10am to 4pm and in South Australia, from 11am to 5pm.
With no public holiday in Queensland and WA, standard trading hours will apply.
At this stage it’s very unlikely cinemas will be allowed to reopen in time for the long weekend, although Hoyts Australia has announced on social media their venues will be “opening soon” and that “you can almost smell the popcorn”.
“We are advanced in preparations to ensure our guests and team members are in the safest possible environment. These measures will include additional staff training, temperature checks for staff, additional cleaning protocols, in cinema seat separation (chequerboard style), encouragement for online bookings and social distancing. We will be making more announcements soon!” Hoyts posted.
WHY DO WE CELEBRATE MONTHS AFTER QUEEN’S DATE OF BIRTH?
Every June, the majority Australians — excluding those in Western Australia and Queensland — get a public holiday to celebrate the Queen’s Birthday. But why do we celebrate Her Majesty’s birthday in June if Queen Elizabeth II was born on April 21?
The origins of the Queen’s Birthday holiday date back to 1788 for Australia. Back then, the reigning monarch was King George III. To commemorate the king’s birthday, Governor Arthur Phillip declared it a holiday, one which was to be celebrated each year. This tradition continued for the next 148 years, dates changing according to each royal succession, until the death of King George V in 1936. After his reign, the holiday remained close to the date of his birth, June 3.
Nowadays, the public holiday is locked in for the second Monday in June, on which the Queen’s Birthday honours list is released. The list announces new members to the Order of Australia and commends those of exceptional service.
WHAT ABOUT CORONAVIRUS RESTRICTIONS?
Australia is slowly opening up just in time for the public holiday, but what you can and can’t do is determined by your state government.
Here is what the current situation is in your area and what you will be able to do on the June long weekend if your state observes it.
From June 1:
• Gatherings of up to 20 people allowed in the home, including the members of the household
• Restaurants, cafes and the dining areas of pubs allowed to reopen with up to 20 patrons but must abide by physical distancing requirements
• Skate parks and playgrounds reopen in line with school returning
• Overnight stays – including hotels, motels, camping and caravan parks and other accommodation, permitted across the state
• Indoor and outdoor swimming pools will reopen with a maximum of 20 patrons per space and a limit of three people per lane
• Outdoor group sport allowed with a maximum of 20 people
• Galleries, museums, national institutions, historic sites, outdoor amusement parks, zoos, arcades, libraries and other community facilities can reopen with up to 20 customers allowed in each separate space, subject to four square metre rule
• Drive-in cinemas will also reopen
• Beauty therapy, tanning, waxing, nail salons, spas, tattoo parlours, massage parlours can reopen with up to 20 patrons subject to social distancing
• Market stalls can re-open, but indoor markets must adhere to four square metre and social distancing rules
• Place of worship can open for up to 20 people in one space
• Weddings with up to 20 people allowed, on top of the celebrant and couple
From June 1:
• Beauty salons to reopen for a maximum of 10 clients and subject to four square metre rule, magazines will be removed from waiting areas
• Up to 50 people will be allowed in restaurants, pubs and cafes, subject to four square metre rule. Bookings of no more than 10 people and patrons must be seated
• NSW residents will be able to take a holiday anywhere in NSW
• Museums, galleries and libraries across NSW will be allowed to reopen, subject to four square metre rule
From June 5:
• Cinemas and theatres to reopen with maximum of 20 people
• Galleries and museums allowed to open with up to 20 people
• Beauty, nails, tattoo and massage parlours can re-open, subject to four square metre rule
• Driving instruction lessons allowed, subject to social distancing
• Gyms and indoor fitness venues to reopen for up to 20 people
From noon on June 5:
• The two-hour limit on indoor activities will be removed
• Bars and clubs will be allowed to operate without food being compulsory
• Entertainment venues and cinemas allowed to re-open in approved configuration
• Team sports such as football and netball permitted
• All licensed gaming activities allowed including TAB
• Restricted services at beauty, cosmetic, tattoo parlours can resume
• Amusements parks, recreation centres, sporting arenas and stadiums can open with seating in an approved configuration
A stack of new restrictions will ease from June 15 when the state moves to stage two, but here’s what you’ll be able to do on the public holiday:
• Aged care residents will be allowed two visitors at least once a day
• National parks and reserves will be open for exercise but people will only be able to visit those within 30km of their home
• Gatherings of up to 10 people allowed for both indoor and outdoor activities, including for weddings, real estate sales and religious gatherings
• Visitors allowed in the home will to increase to five people (from two people)
• Up to 10 people allowed in restaurants and cafes, including venues located in pubs, RSLs and clubs for seated table service
• Libraries and other government facilities will be open for up to 10 people
• Parks with exercise equipment and playgrounds, pools and boot camps outdoors will be opened for up to 10 people
AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
From June 1, Canberrans will be allowed to visit NSW for a holiday.
Here’s what’s already allowed:
• Indoor and outdoor gatherings can have a maximum of 10 people, which includes children
• Restaurants, cafes and pubs and clubs with dining areas are allowed up to 10 patrons at a time, nightclubs and bars are closed but takeaway and delivery services are allowed
• Hairdressers and barbers open subject to four square metre rule
• Retail shops are open subject to four square metre rule
• Up to 10 people can attend a wedding including the couple, but this doesn’t include the celebrant and wedding photographer