The morning sun lit the path of the 2022 NAIDOC Week bridge walk in Murray Bridge.
A massive group of people came together to celebrate this year's NAIDOC Week theme, 'GET UP! STAND UP! SHOW UP!'.
Not even ongoing bridge works slowed down the group as local Ngarrindjeri and First Nations people were joined by schools, politicians and councillors, police and bridge workers and anyone else who came to show their support.
Moving up Bridge Street, the group was met with waves from passers by, admiring the support for the NAIDOC Week celebrations, before converging at the Council Chambers for a musical performance and award presentation.
Tahlia Lloyd, current Chair of Moorundi and the celebration's MC, said the bridge walk has been happening for a long time and is a great way to see a community come together.
"It's really great to be able to do this on Ngarrindjeri country and be able to celebrate with community," she said.
Local Ngarrindjeri musical group, Deadly Nannas, performed a welcome to country in the Ngarrindjeri language, as well as a collection of other songs including collaborations with local rap artists, Isaiah Janiak and Isaiah Kartinyeri.
Five flags were raised before a one minute silence, remembering and paying respects to people who have passed - the five flags included the Ngarrindjeri flag, the Australian flag, the South Australian flag, the Aboriginal flag, and the Torres Strait Islander flag.
The six award categories celebrated individuals who have demonstrated excellence and leadership in the Murray Bridge community; someone who acts as a role model for the community, and someone who is committed to the empowerment of the local First Nations' community and whose impact on the Ngarrindjeri Nation has inspired others.
Elder of the year award winners were Moorundi CEO, Uncle Steven Sumner, and local Ngarrindjeri woman, Aunty Vicki Hartman.
Young person of the year winners were Year 11 Mannum Community College student, Acacia Goldsmith, and local rap artist Isaiah Janiak.
The Worker of the year award was won by Walter Jackson - a worker who is passionate about seeking opportunities to engage young people and the Ngarrindjeri community - and Jaimie Pearson, who has pushed for an Aboriginal Advisory Group and Reconciliation Action Plan to be imbedded in the Mid Murray Council.
Sportsperson of the year award winners were Year nine student Anthony Long, and SANFL women's league player, Nekia Wilson.
The Junior encouragement award was won by Jordan Wilson, a student who is actively engaged in his schooling and has demonstrated his ability to be a great role model to other Nunga students, especially in his Ngarrindjeri lessons.
The final award, Artist of the year, was awarded to the Murrundi Ink team.
Made up of four local Ngarrindjeri women - Georgie Trevorrow, Aunty Ros Richards, Diana Murphy and Natasha Sumner - the Murrundi Ink team have worked together on the release of five books, with the use of the Ngarrindjeri language, that tell stories around language, culture and health.
The Murray Bridge NAIDOC Week celebrations had a big turn out with more events in Murray Bridge and the Murraylands still yet to come.
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