LOCALS can tickle their tastebuds with some sweet goodness very soon, with the Warialda Honey Festival set to go ahead. The 2021 event is planned for March 27. It comes after the pandemic forced the cancellation of the 2020 event. Gwydir Shire Council’s Courtney Loosemore is taking on the organisation of this year’s festival, and said even with COVID still about, they “have all intentions of running a 2021 festival”. “We’re in the initial stages of planning at the moment, and all those who put down for setting up in 2020 will be invited back for the 2021 festival,” Ms Loosemore said. READ MORE: The event draws about 800-1000 Warialda residents and people from further afield every year. Ms Loosemore said with so many people gathered in the Warialda Recreation Area at one time, COVID precautions would be in place. “My understanding is, at present, the guidelines are there’ll be digital registration for the event so people will be required to sign in upon entry into the venue,” she told the Leader. “There’ll be constant reminders for social distancing, hand sanitiser will be available, and the emcee will have constant reminders for these, too.” She said the community event would be “really nice” for the town as “there hasn’t been much happening”. “It’s a good way to come out and catch up with people after many months,” Ms Loosemore said. The event is set to feature market stalls, food and drinks, entertainment, kid’s rides, and Bieber the Bee will be there saying ‘hello’ to everyone. The honey and bee theme is derived from Warialda’s name, which means in the local Indigenous language ‘place of wild honey’.