In March 2007, a delegation of four set out from Cittaslow headquarters in Italy to inspect Goolwa in South Australia and then the Blue Mountains. This was because they had received an extensive self-assessment with evidence from both regions beforehand.
When visiting the Blue Mountains 16th March 2007, the delegates experienced our magnificent World Heritage listed environment, our diverse cafes and restaurants, vibrant arts community, historic buildings and unique small businesses and they also met some of our small producers. It was agreed these were attributes making Katoomba, Blue Mountains worthy of being declared a Cittaslow. There followed a Civic Reception with the formal presentation of gifts and signing of the Cittaslow Certificate by our Mayor, Jim Angel and the President of Cittaslow, Mr Roberto Angelucci.
The Working Party was very excited to have Katoomba Blue Mountains accredited and vowed to work towards the incorporation of all 26 villages of the Blue Mountain under this banner. Katoomba is the most populace and the town best known to the world here, having the Three Sisters and other world class attractions, so it was deemed the focal point for the local activities of Cittaslow.
The Blue Mountains Slow Food convivium was very active then and a natural support for the establishment of a Cittaslow with the two groups still closely aligned and work together.
For further information at a local level, contact Cittaslow Katoomba Blue Mountains Convenor, Nigel Bell.
As with each Cittaslow across the world, unique projects and events are organised that are supportive of the local community for a range of reasons. It could be to simply introduce Cittaslow to the residents who have not previously experienced it; it could be to raise funds for a local cause or initiative; or, it could just be to encourage interaction, communication and fun within the town. Cittaslow Katoomba Blue Mountains has initiated a range of diverse projects, some of which are one offs and now completed, others are ongoing or repeated regularly, or from time to time. These include:
A Kitchen Garden in Every Home – nurturing self sufficiency and healthy eating
Welcome Pack – information and welcome for new residents and businesses settling in the area
Heritage and Art Walk – self guided tour of art and history in and around Katoomba
Information and education – membership application, workshops , planting and other gardening information, Producers register, Fruit and Nut Tree register
Web site – history, links to affiliated groups, Events and What To Do calendars, research and reports, overview of projects and activities
Street Gardens – wine barrel planters and other street plantings
Butterfly Walks – permanent butterfly sculptures beautifying are laneways and streets with colour and vibrancy
CCTV and Solar Lighting – security and green energy
Use of Cittaslow logo – encouraging and endorsing businesses and community groups to adopt the Cittaslow principles and display the logo
Social media networks – LinkedIn and Facebook page
Combining Cittaslow/Slow Food
Fashionistas Trail – A Slow Shopping for guide for finding pre-loved fashion and cafes across the Blue Mountains
Stalls at festivals and exhibitions – Wines of the West, Food with Altitude, to name a few
Cooking and growing workshops – Chook Tours, Cooking with Weeds, Preserving with Vacola, plus more
Visit www.cittaslow.org.au for details of these projects.
For more on Cittaslow internationally, visit www.cittaslow.org