Rotarians love a dress-up and it was a masquerade theme to welcome District Governor Terry Brown and wife Carol to Tenterfield on Tuesday night, October 9.
The DG was on hand to welcome the Rotary Club of Tenterfield’s newest members Cameron Bolton and Paris Haselsberger to the fold, although he commented that the young couple had decimated the membership’s average age.
The new members were sponsored by Cameron’s dad Harry, who had quipped at the AGM when Ms Haselsberger wanted to acquire his dinner roll that he’d exchange it for Rotary membership.
“Of the two new members, one was easy to convince to become a Rotarian,” Mr Bolton Snr said.
“She sold her soul for a bread roll.”
In other Rotary news, youth representative Jim Byrne reported that 24 Tenterfield High School students attended the Tamworth Driver Awareness Expo this year, thanks to ongoing Rotary sponsorship funded by proceeds from the club’s trivia night.
Thirteen year 12 students and 12 year 11 students then headed north to Willowbank for some hands-on and defensive driving training, respectively. Mr Byrne said yes he did get an opportunity to get behind the wheel, although the former speed racer was speedily informed the way he holds the steering wheel is now considered wrong.
Excitement is building for the next Beerfest, March 9. Thirty-one band members accompanied by seven others will be coming, representing a large entourage for what will be the ninth visit.
On top of the $7300 from the annual street stall donated to the Salvation Army to aid local drought-affected farmers, members voted to donate another $1000 to Disaster Aid Australia whose current focus is on providing drinking water solutions in Palu, Indonesia which was hit by a six-metre high tsunami.
In his speech DG Brown praised the Tenterfield club as the epitome of what a Rotary club should be.
“I think the ideal is one club, one town, one community, and that’s you,” he told the meeting, “and Tenterfield club is better than most.”
In addition to providing updates on Rotary’s polio vaccination program, the Bingara-born former shearer related a recent experience when he had to listen to a fellow speaker at his Lismore club expound the virtues of the Bingara community.
Apparently they are very respectful of the town’s avenue of orange trees planted as a memorial to lost WWI and WW2 soldiers.
Not one person touches an orange before the designated day, the audience was told.
“I thought I’d have to resign,” Mr Brown said.
Drought is the main topic of conversation at every club over the past two months he said, and some Rotary districts are providing drought relief directly while the organisation as a whole funnels funds through the CWA in both NSW and Queensland and the Salvation Army.
His district 9640, to which Tenterfield belongs, also raised around $60,000 for the Burrumbuttock Hay Runners. Mr Brown pointed out that the hay, use of the trucks and the drivers’ time are all donated. Money is needed for the fuel which amounts to about $2000 a truck.
Finally, an interesting project the district is supporting is the trial of a vaccine developed by Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary to prevent chlamydia in koalas.
“If nothing is done, the koala population will die out within 50 years,” Mr Brown said.