January has proved quite an eventful start to 2021, first with the get-together in Quota Park on the 21st with takeaways from The Inlet. Shame about the breeze but it was good to catch up with so many.
Thank you everyone for the great effort making our market last Sunday such a success, especially Chris O’Brien for organizing 81 sites. The place was buzzing with crowds of locals and tourists and perfect summer weather. Takings were fantastic: Gate $1,458, Van $887 and Wishing Well $412. It was also great to see Tony Butcher and his wife Lisa at the market; Tony helped Andrew on the barbecue.
On Monday at the Australia Day presentations, I was delighted to announce that the recipient of this year’s Narooma Rotary Tertiary Scholarship is Elise Dixon. She is the 31st student from Narooma High School to be awarded this three-year $9,000 scholarship, thanks to a bequest made by Alexander Birch. Elise intends studying for a Bachelor of Medical Science at the ANU in Canberra.
Then it was all hands on deck for our annual Australia Day Duck Race when 1,000 ducks were launched off the bridge. A special thanks to Charmaine White for managing this year’s event. Thanks also to everyone who helped including the flotilla of kayakers and even Maritime Services who scooped up the ducks before they reached the bar. The holder of the winning duck ticket 932 was young Murray Lyons of Bodalla who just happened to be at the boat ramp and was gobsmacked to know he had won $1,000. The lucky last duck was 508, won by Heldi Pilli of Potato Point.
This Thursday is our Youth Night, our first formal Rotary meeting for 2021. Elise Dixon, our 2021 Tertiary Scholars will join us as well as last year’s awardee Rory Spurgeon and Tahlia Arnold. Carl McEvoy (our 2015 Tertiary Scholarship winner) has sent an update on his life since graduating with a Bachelor of Communication (Media Arts & Production) from UTS. Narooma High Principal Fiona Jackson will also join us together with this year’s school captains Abbey Dawson and Patrick Sly.
The Week that Was
The Covid factor in this year’s Duck Race
Who’d have thought that Covid affected the Duck Race. Well, it all started when we did the right thing by social distancing the duck bags and their bearers from the middle of the bridge towards the southern shore.
It wasn’t long though before some ducks closest to the training wall decided to take advantage of the high water and head over the wall for the relatively still waters behind, so officially taking them out of the race. This then split our retrieval efforts, making it more difficult to collect the stayers who kept heading past the finish line towards the town wharf. (It’s wonderful how many Rotarians and friends take to the water each year to help including one regular boat. Tremendous effort. )
Thanks to the kayakers, ducks collected from behind the wall were stockpiled on the island behind the wall for later retrieval so the kayakers could return to the main game. The pile attracted the interest of a few light-fingered lads who visited in their kayaks; those ducks have since rejoined their friends.
Then there was the problem after the race with the falling tide, how to retrieve the ducks from the island which had since been bagged (four bags – very heavy) and too far to carry. The solution? They were floated back on boogie boards to the shore near the caravan park (not as easy as it sounds!). As Steve Deck neared the shore on the final trip, his activity aroused the interest of Fisheries Officers who wondered what was in the bags… Laughs all round.
Out and About
Rotary’s Valentine Day Car Rally
Our Valentine’s Day Rotary Car Rally with Moruya Rotarians is on Sunday morning 14 February culminating with a yummy barbecue lunch at Chez McInnes at Potato Point. Rally organiser extraordinaire David McInnes will give more details next week. Rod Walker will be taking numbers for catering needs. Moruya hopes to have at least 20 people join us.
Moruya Rotary has pencilled in Tuesday 2 March as the date for our annual Cinders Challenge at Moruya Golf Club. Please put it in your diary. Should be a great night. Hope everyone is in training…
Australian Rotary celebrates 100 years
This year is the Centenary of the foundation of Rotary in Australia and New Zealand. The Rotary Clubs of Melbourne and Sydney both formed in 2021. Interesting that Sir John Monash was a founding member of the Melbourne Club. Sir John was noted for his brilliant command of the Australian Army Corps in France which proved instrumental in turning the tide of the First World War. He also oversaw the amazing demobilisation of 160,000 Australian soldiers in Europe, a task that took up to nine months to get them home.
Thinking caps on for doing something special this year to celebrate the centenary ; there has been a suggestion we could do something special with Moruya and Batemans Bay Clubs.
NEXT WEEK Thursday 4 February
5pm: Board meeting at the Golf Club particularly to discuss important issues regarding future meetings and the Rotary Van.
A dinner meeting will follow when our newest member PE Andrew Lawson will talk about his life.