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Tuesday, 24 October


Miners Dispensary is your partner in health The Star

THE Miners Dispensary in Wonthaggi is more than just a pharmacy. It is your partner in health, with a focused and trained team of professionals who can improve your health and wellbeing in many different ways.
With summer coming up it is appropriate we consider the damage the sun can do to our skin.
We are running a Sun Awareness Clinic on Wednesday, November 15.  In a one-on-one consultation, a specialist nurse will assess photograph and analyse your face using sophisticated UV photography and RBX technology, and provide valuable information on reducing risk factors and effective use of sunscreens, including providing a personalised take-home skin analysis report.
The clinic is very reasonably priced at just $15 for a consultation (members price $10). Bookings are essential and numbers are limited.
Our pharmacists can also assist you in reviewing your medications through a MedsCheck.  MedsCheck is ideal for anyone who takes five or more prescription medications or has had a recent significant medical event.
These are a free one on one in store consultation with your pharmacist to review and discuss the best ways to manage and the get the most out of your medicines.
It focuses on education and self management and aims to give you a better understanding of your medication and assist in making sure it
We also offer on demand flu and Boostrix injections. If you are expecting a new baby in your family, a Boostrix injection, which helps prevent the spread of Whooping Cough, should be considered.
Whooping cough is always in our community, and everybody who may be in close contact with your newborn can and should be vaccinated to help protect themselves and your baby.
Whooping cough vaccination is quick, simple and available at the Miners Dispensary.
And we are also very proud to announce the arrival of the Impromy Weight Loss program to Wonthaggi.
Developed in collaboration with CSIRO, the Impromy program focuses on improving health through weight loss and good nutrition.
It comprises nutritious and great tasting meal replacements along with high protein meals and ongoing support by trained pharmacy staff.
The key elements of the program include;
a clinically tested program developed in collaboration with the CSIRO;
high protein meals and nutritionally enhanced meal replacements;
personalised meal plans and cookbook;
free Impromy Health consultations and regular health reviews;
smartphone app to track weight loss and provide support between visits; and
phoneline support by a trained dietitian.
Our pharmacists will become part of your weight loss journey, providing real support with regular health reviews and reports.
Health reviews are conducted throughout the program and measured at day one; one month; three months; six months and 12 months.
Your Impromy program consultant will monitor your weight, bloo...


Tourism mentees announced for South Gippsland The Star

THE future of the tourism industry in South Gippsland is in good hands.
The 2017-18 participants in the Ken Hore Tourism Mentoring Program were announced recently.
The program promotes skills and excellence among young people and new entrants into the tourism industry, extends their tourism networks, and provides a broader understanding of the industry, while contributing to the growth of tourism in Gippsland and Phillip Island.
The 2017-18 participants who are sponsored by their employers are: Nick Stephens  of Phillip Island Designated Driver, owner of his own small business; Jaci Hicken of Jacican Food Studio at Mirboo North, owner of small business; Jie Liu of Latrobe City Council and works in international relations and is keen to expand tourism knowledge; Cageon Loy of Bass Coast Shire Council Visitor Information Centre; and Dena Waters of South Gippsland Shire Council Visitor Information Centre.
Participants attend local conferences, spend a day with tourism leaders on Phillip Island and in Gippsland, and then spend a day in Melbourne meeting with Visit Victoria and Victoria Tourism Industry Council.
They will then undergo a six month mentor program with an industry leader who can provide insight into their area of interest.
The program is presented by Destination Phillip Island, Destination Gippsland and Bass Coast Shire Council.
The program honours the contribution made by the late Ken Hore to the Gippsland and Phillip Island tourism industry.
Mr Hore worked at Bass Coast Shire Council and had a long association with the Gippsland and Phillip Island tourism industry. He encouraged business and personal development with his generous support and commitment to others.

Going places: from left, Cageon Loy of Bass Coast Shire Council, Jie Liu of Latrobe City Council, Jaci Hicken of Jacican at Mirboo North, Nick Stephens of Phillip Island Designated Driver, and Dena Waters of South Gippsland Shire Council will take part in the Ken Hore Tourism Mentoring Program.


Galloping in for horse expo The Star

THE inaugural Gippsland Horse Expo was held at the Mirboo North Shire Hall recently.THE inaugural Gippsland Horse Expo was held at the Mirboo North Shire Hall recently.Horse lovers from as far away as Bairnsdale, Melbourne and even Tasmania flocked to the hall to check out the many stalls inside. Local businesses, as well as many from further afield, offered a range of equine products and services, including equipment, clothing, training, health, alternative therapies, promotional products, customised gifts and even bespoke artwork.  Representatives from Tarwin Veterinary Group fielded questions and educated horse owners on equine first aid, preventative health care and changes in treatment.  Project Hope Horse Welfare Victoria also attended. The not-for-profit organisation was established in 1973 and is run entirely by volunteers, relying on the support of members care for horses in need across Victoria. They contribute to the health and welfare of horses by helping horse owners care for their animals, rehabilitating surrendered horses that are abandoned, sick, injured or mistreated, and educating owners and the community alike on horse welfare. They also lease rehabilitated horses at no charge to caring homes.Berrys Creek artisan Olivia OConnor attracted a lot of attention for her hand-crafted heirloom rocking horses.  Using Australian materials and traditional techniques, Olivia works tirelessly on her bespoke creations as well as restorations. She also runs classes at the Leongatha Mens Shed on hand carving your own rocking horse.All businesses in attendance were delighted with the turnout, not only engaging with existing and new clients, but also networking with each other throughout the day.Optimistically hoping for an attendance of 1000 on the day, organiser Grace Belton was delighted to see far more than that flooding through the doors. Taking five months to organise, the event was self-funded and the first of its kind, not only for Mirboo North, but for the whole of Gippsland.  Overjoyed with the success of the expo, Grace already has big plans for next year, with ideas for a larger venue, educational talks, demonstrations and even a whole weekend event.The catering was supplied by the Boolarra Pony Club. In the future, Grace hopes the success of the expo will enable money to be put back into the community as a whole.



Three new faces join GippsDairy board The Star

THREE new directors were appointed to the GippsDairy Board at last Thursdays annual general meeting.
Korumburras Michelle Axford, Glen Alvie dairy farmer Shiona Berry and Neerim Souths David Johnson were formally announced in their new roles at the AGM in Traralgon.
The meeting also saw Grant Williams, a dairy farmer from Hallora, and Lauren Finger, a dairy farmer from Yannathan, reappointed as chair and deputy chair respectively. Denison dairy farmer Brad Missen was elected secretary.
Gardiner Foundation hosted a post-AGM dinner, where results of a comprehensive feed-base study were released.
Mr Williams said the three new directors would bring a variety of skills to the board table.
Davids business experience, Michelles knowledge of genetics and Shionas background as a ruminant nutritionist mean we have added a huge bank of knowledge to the board, he said.
All three are also dairy farmers, so they understand the industry and what farmers are having to deal with in any given season.
DataGene evaluation manager Michelle Axford said joining the board was a good fit after two decades of working in the dairy industry.
I have broad interests in dairy, outside of my paid job, having been involved in Cows Create Careers and the Young Dairy Development Program when it was just getting off the ground, she said.
Ive been working in parallel to GippsDairy for most of my 20 year career in dairy, so Ive always been interested in what GippsDairy has been doing.
Michelle, who milks 250 cows with husband Michael at Korumburra, said she would like to use her on-farm experience and knowledge of genetics to help GippsDairy deliver better outcomes for the regions farmers.
We are fortunate to have some really good research outcomes that are still yet to be taken up by a broad spectrum of farms, she said.
For some farms that may be doing something different in the genetics space, for others it might be doing something different in the pastures space.
Glen Alvie dairy farmer Shiona Berry wants to encourage innovation during her time on the GippsDairy board.
Milking 750 cows with husband Caleb on hilly country, Shiona can see huge potential in digital developments like virtual fencing.
I love a bit of innovation, so Id like to bring that discussion to the table, she said.
Im a bit in love with virtual fencing at the moment. I can really see the benefits of it, especially in hilly land.
Virtual fencing sees cows wear a collar that tells them when they are approaching a GPS designated line by issuing a buzz so the cows learn to move away from the line. A farmer can make fences at home on a computer and can herd cows into the shed.
Shiona, who has a background as a ruminant nutritionist, said innovative thinking could change the way the Gippsland industry looks at home grown feed, making a big difference to profitability.
I wou...


Burra Foods cut costs The Star

BURRA Foods is moving forward, turning sustainable and cost efficient by installing 100 kilowatts of solar energy to the front warehouse roof at its Korumburra site.
Like the everyday household, Burra Foods is struggling with the ever increasing costs of energy and must do something about it, Glenn Falcke of Burra Foods said.
Our energy costs have more than doubled over the last three years and this increase is hurting the business.
Our starting point, which began last year, was to replace all lights to LED. Our program has us about 50 percent of the way at present.
The second step for Burra Foods was to install 100 kilowatt of solar energy to the front warehouse roof, and with the assistance of Sustainability Victoria, the company will undergo a level two energy efficiency audit.
A specialist third party audit team will identify areas where Burra can reduce its energy requirements.
From this audit and the imminent energy management system installation, we have targeted a reduction in energy volume of less than 10 percent, Mr Falcke said.
The State Government has paid for around 45 percent of the project.

Environmentally friendly: from left, Burra Foods electrical services coordinator Adam Maffei with Burra Foods contractors Pierce Sheahan and Brendan Reed in front of the 100 kilowatts of solar energy panels recently installed on top of Burra Foods front warehouse roof at Korumburra.


Balers pose fire danger The Star

EACH year we hear about hay stack fires in sheds and in paddocks and the financial loss of outside haystacks, sheds and unfortunately, equipment.
However, not so commonly known is that there are also many baler fires that start while baling, many of which could have been avoided or at least, with much reduced damage.
Not only are balers often burnt in these fires, but sometimes the tractor is also partly or completely destroyed, neither cheap pieces of machinery.
No doubt there are other unreported costs such as paddock fires caused by the baler fire spreading into nearby windrows and surrounding dry paddocks, especially if there is wind.
There is always the dangerous prospect of serious burns to the operator. Then there is the potential loss of animal production due to the delay in baling, until another baler is put into action and worse if it rains beforehand, causing substantial loss in nutritive value of the hay.
Most baler and tractor fires are caused by over-heating of, usually, damaged bearings and often not noticed until the hay bale and baler are well alight, unless the operator just happened to turn around when fire first started.
What should be well known by farmers and contractors is that it is compulsory by law in Victoria for all tractors to have a water extinguisher with a minimum nine litre capacity attached to the tractor during the fire restriction period.
This can be either a pressurised water extinguisher or a knapsack, although the latter is difficult to attach on many late model tractors. This simple tool is a no brainer when operating equipment with hot bearings in hot dry, windy conditions in very dry flammable grass.
The CFA also recommends carrying a minimum two kilogram dry powder extinguisher. These are useful for electrical and hydraulic oil fires, often starting as a result of the baler fire melting wires or hydraulic hoses.
Embers often are blown into nooks and crannies around and under the tractor cabin and other hard to get at places.
Spraying water into these spots sometimes does not reach all crevices or deep enough where dust and loose dry material has built up. The water can sometimes evaporate before extinguishing the fire in some locations.
However, a powder extinguisher will spread further and is more effective in these scenarios than water. Electrical shorts can also start fires and even though the electrics are usually automatically shut down on many of the latest model tractors, fires can sometimes short circuit this safety process. Water wont extinguish this fire.
Farmers and contractors are urged to clean the tractor each day to minimise build-up of flammable material.
Over time, dust and loose dry grass builds up in nooks and crannies and can lodge near hot tractor parts such as the engine manifold, exhaust and turbocharger.
Get a handle on the normal operating temperatures of the bearings once the baler reaches op...


Race president reflects on great year The Star

STONY Creek Racing Club held its 2017 annual general meeting to report on its activities over the preceding 12 months.
Those members attending the dinner meeting at the Meeniyan Hotel also heard an entertaining talk from Dr Michael Bourke, a highly respected club life member.
It was also confirmed that retired champion jockey Peter Hutchinson will be guest speaker at the clubs cocktail evening to launch the 2017/18 season on November 24.
This evening, free for members and guests, runs from 6 to 8pm.
At the meeting president Paul OSullivan reflected on another great year for the club.
The 2016/17 racing season has been very rewarding for the club, with five race meetings held on a good racing surface, with total attendances of nearly 8000 people. Most race days were fully sponsored and membership numbers, bucking industry trends, increased slightly, highlighting the great support the club receives from the local community, he said.
Industry distributions from Country Racing Victoria also helped to give the club a solid financial base on which to operate in coming years.
Paul acknowledged the wonderful efforts of Sarah Wolf and Cindy Logan in their roles as CEO and track manager, as well as committee members.
Their combined efforts helped Stony Creek be nominated as one of the finalists in CRVs Country Racing Club of the Year award for 2016/17.
The club is proud to make a positive contribution to the local community in many ways. Through its operation it provides employment and strong economic activity in the area, as well as entertainment for locals and visitors. It provides fundraising opportunities for local sporting and community Clubs with around $16,000 being distributed for their race day help this year, and over $1300 was raised for the Foster and Leongatha Hospitals on our Publicans race day, Mr OSullivan said.
Sponsorship income is vital for the Clubs success and Paul thanked the clubs many supporters, in particular Ladbrokes.
Club elections saw four Committee members retire, and Paul thanked John Cooper, Jenny McFadden, Brian Cantwell and John Lamont for their contributions.
These vacancies were filled by Michael and Tanya Darmanin, Stephen Bradford and Tony Cantwell. Paul OSullivan was re-elected as president with Graeme Walsh taking the vice presidents role and Graeme Ward re-elected as treasurer.
After dinner, Dr Bourke entertained the audience with fascinating and humorous memories of the clubs history, and his role as medical officer on race days.


AFL 9s hits Wonthaggi The Star

FOOTBALL season is officially over but why not keep active with AFL 9s in Wonthaggi?
GippSport have partnered with Wonthaggi Power Football Netball Club, Bass Coast Breakers Womens AFL team and AFL Gippsland to offer a six week social AFL 9s program at Wonthaggi Recreation Reserve every Monday from November 13 to December 18.
Its a fast, fun, free-flowing game that involves nine players on each team playing on a smaller field.
Best of all, its touch football with no tackling or bumping, making it suitable for everyone.
The program at Wonthaggi will offer a separate female and male category with timeslots from 6pm to 7.40pm.
GippSport Program Coordinator Gene Parini is extremely excited by the new initiative.
Its a great opportunity for people to get active outside of the traditional structure of sport. Social sport is becoming more popular and the aim is to establish the program this year and make it a permanent one for future years.
The local program has been specifically structured to engage teenagers from 14 years of age to adults.
Due to it being non-contact it provides a level playing field for all ages.
It will provide an environment whereby players in the U16s to U18s boys teams and Youth Girls teams can combine with senior players in a fun social setting.
The male category will consist of teams of x3 U16s, x3 U18s and x3 seniors whilst the female category will consist of half U18 youth girls and half senior women.
Players and clubs outside Wonthaggi Power and Bass Coast Breakers are encouraged to register and individuals are all welcome, no previous experience is needed.
This is a great opportunity to get active, get a taste of AFL and if you are not already involved in local footy possibly find a team to play with for season 2018.
The cost is $40 per player for the six week program.
To watch the short video three minute video explaining AFL 9s go to
To register or to find out more information please contact Gene Parini at GippSport at or 5674 6004.
There are limited team entries, so be quick.

Great opportunity: Chelsea Caple (AFL Gippsland), Ella Angarane (Bass Coast Breakers AFL Womens)...


Knights celebrate amazing season The Star

LEONGATHA Knights Football Club players and supporters gathered on October 14 to celebrate another wonderful season.
The juniors enjoyed a short presentation followed by the traditional barbecue and parents vs. players match.
The Seniors presentation night was held at the Daker Centre with decorations by Jess Odgers, lights by Chris Gale, beautiful tunes from Marty Box and a wonderful buffet from Kooks Catering.
The club celebrated the U16s participation in the semi finals, the Reserves runners up win and the Lady Knights grand final win.
Award winners are as follows;
U12s best and fairest  Juan Lacanaria; coachs award Montana Krane; coachs award Kody Chalmers.
U14s best and fairest Eddie Colwill; coachs award Brianna McNaughton.
U15s best and fairest- Evie Bath; coachs Award Louise Coldwill.
U16s best and fairest- Curtis Rintoule; coachs award Jyhe Biggs; best and fairest runner up Malik Phillips.
Reserves best and fairest Stuart McNaughton; runners up best and fairest Brian Gannon; coachs award Shem Murphy.
Womens best and fairest Kathy Zacharopoulos; runners up best and fairest Marissa Preston; coachs award Lorena OConner.
Senior mens best and fairest Fergus Warren; runners up best and fairest Blake Moscript; coachs award Charlie Dougherty.
Don Morris Perpetual Award for best club person: Bethany Milkins.

Seniors: best and fairest Fergus Warren, best and fairest runners up Blake Moscript, senior mens coach Glenn Bainbridge and coachs award recipient Charlie Dougherty.


Town, Glen Alvie on the board The Star

LEONGATHA Town and Glen Alvie have broken through to claim first wins of the season after claiming Round Three one day matches in A1 cricket on Saturday.
Town secured its win with a lively innings by Matt Davies with 91 not out coming after losing his opening partner Jack Hume LBW for a duck.
Davies hit nine 4s and one 6 as he combined with Matt Smith for a 124 run partnership. Smith hit an entertaining 55 runs including five 4s and three 6s. Town finished on 5/210 after batting first for its 40 overs.
In reply Korumburra made a steady start with openers Kallan Rigby hitting 21 and Iian Osman 51. Matthew Houston was aggressive too and smashed 51, nine fours being belted in his total.
The Burra edged closer but Town was able to claim wickets at strategic times to go on and win by just 14 runs. Madura Weerasinghe Silva claimed 3/30 while Darcy Hume took 2/24.
Glen Alvie 9/176 snared a narrow win over Kilcunda Bass with just one wicket and one over to spare chasing Kilcunda Basss 6/174.
Ashley Larcombe was heading towards a century before the Killy Bass opener was runout for 80. Joe Hewison backed this up with an impressive 48 but the Glen Alvie bowlers were able to keep the screws on and keep the total within reach. Hewison completed a great match with bat and ball, claiming 4/25.
Inverloch 5/158 completed an impressive win over OMK 7/155 in an enthralling match.
Inverloch made a modest total which featured top scorers Tim Thornby 48 and Kit Rotthier 26 run out for an opening stand of 51. Runs were hard to get as OMK used a number of bowlers in the attack.
Inverlochs luck came early in the bowling when Daniel Mock was out for a rare duck, caught off the bowling of Ben Thomas.
Despite this the Diggers knuckled down with Tom Wyatt scoring 49 and Jason Wilson 47 to push the score along but OMK lost three wickets in the space of nine runs to put it on the back foot. Chasing runs the Diggers lost two for run outs including Daniel Lloyd for 31.
Phillip Island 160 lost its game in a top of the table clash against Wonthaggi Club 9/201.
Club batted first and it was the middle order in Ryan G Thomas who stepped up with 63 and James Sherrin 41.
Eli Richards set the Island alight with 76 but a latter order batting collapse saw the Island exposed. Thomas completed a good game taking 3/19, with Alex Geyer 3/36 and James Sherrin too amongst the highlight reel taking 2/17 including the wicket of Richards.


Fashion for a cause The Star

A CAPACITY crowd filled the Cape Paterson room at Inverlochs RACV Resort for the Inverloch Pink Ribbon Fashion Parade last Thursday, October 19.

An enthusiastic audience looked on as six local women modelled clothing, jewellery and accessories from Bliss in Inverloch. Outfits ranged from casual and beachy through to day wear, race wear and after five.

With a variety of styles and sizes on show, there was something to interest everyone.

The fundraising committee was thrilled with the success of this years event, held to aid the Cancer Council in its fight against womens cancers.

Over $3500 was raised and we are grateful for the support of local communities and particularly to the RACV Resort and Bliss for the major roles they played, organising committee member Rosemary Perry said.

The committee is also appreciative of donations from local traders for the raffle and door prizes.

Once again Inverloch has shown its willingness to support a good cause and enjoy itself in the process.

Looking lovely: back, from left, Robin Smith, Helen Arnold and Karen Orford, and front, from left, Rosemary Perry, Lyn Shaw and Mary Butcher modelled clothing and items from Bliss in Inverloch at the Pink Ribbon Fashion Parade held at Inverloch RACV Resort last Thursday.


Children taste college life The Star

MARY MacKillop Catholic Regional College in Leongatha opened its doors to Grade 5 students from across the district on Thursday.

Discovery Day is a coordinated program of activities that introduces Grade 5 students to the college.

Children participated in walking tours, woodwork, food technology, science, drama, music and robotics, and met students from other schools feeding into Mary MacKillop College.

We were thrilled to welcome almost 150 Grade 5 students from across South Gippsland to our annual Discovery Day, Mary MacKillop College principal David Leslie said.

The day aims to provide an experience of what secondary school is like.

Our transition program commences with Grade 5 Discovery Day which aims at introducing the students to the college slowly so that by the time they commence Year 7 they are familiar with the grounds, and have met other students and teachers.

Students travelled from as far as Koo Wee Rup, Phillip Island and Foster to be part of the experience.

Master chefs: Leongatha Primary School student Zavier and St Laurences Primary School student Don baked delicious choc chip muffins during Mary MacKillop Colleges Grade 5 Discovery Day on Thursday.


Turning three is fun The Star


THE Alison Lester Gallery and Bookshop in Fish Creek turned three on Sunday and celebrated with a party.

There was cake, a sausage sizzle run by the Fish Creek Primary School and Alison Lester was signing books on the day.

Kids also had the opportunity to have their face painted and read some of Alisons most loved stories.

Happy birthday: on Sunday, the Alison Lester Gallery and Bookshop in Fish Creek celebrated its third birthday with a huge cake. Pictured are Alison, her granddaughter Trixie Maher from Melbourne and Lucy and Ben Cooper from Traralgon.


Trash and treasure at Chairo The Star

CHAIRO Christian School held a successful market and boot sale at its Leongatha campus on Saturday.

Despite occasional rain, the event was a huge hit.

The schools goal was to promote the reuse and recycling of resources, and to ensure resources do not end up in landfill before their time.
The sale offered many preloved and recycled goods, and free activities for children including face painting, jumping castle, popcorn and fairy floss.

Great sale: Vince and Laura Brennan from Leongatha enjoyed the opportunity to sell goods at Chairo Christian Schools market and boot sale in Leongatha on Saturday.


Boggs is back The Star

LEONGATHA Lyric Theatre is pleased to announce that after nearly eight years, the Boggs show is back to entertain and delight South Gippsland audiences.

The end of year travelling show which dates back more than 30 years, is affectionately known as the Boggs show.

This time around the show is back with many of its favourite cast members, including Nicole Cooper, Alison McIntyre, Terry Lay, Barb Fleming and Brad beach who will be joined by new members Adrian Darakai and Laura Mauraty.

The Boggs is Back show is two hours of hilarious fun coupled with a little cross dressing, funny jokes, fantastic comedy sketches and heartfelt songs.

The show is designed to allow audiences two hours to escape and have a great time with friends.

Over the past 30 years, the Boggs show has often been seen as the best end of year fun you can have with friends laughing while having a few drinks.

This years show features songs some serious, some comedic a bit of dance, a range of skits some original, some adapted -from well loved TV shows and is promising to be one of the best Boggs yet.

The adults only show, which is never crude but often naughty, promises to provide audiences with many laughs.

In addition to the fun, the show is also an opportunity for audiences to hear amazing performances from fantastic singers who will provide highly impressive musical moments. It includes some of Lyrics best performers.

If you like comedy, great singing or both, make a point of coming to see Boggs is Back.

With three shows only, hosted by the Mirboo North Swimming Pool, Dumbalk Hall and Korumburra Italian Club, seats will be limited so book early.

The name hails back to the Boggs family who provided a long and rich tradition of music hall entertainment in South Gippsland.

Ebeneezer Boggs (or Genghis as he is affectionately known), and wife Sybil Sidebottom-Boggs created the lineage which has now extended over three generations and has spread to include children, cousins, nieces, in-laws and outlaws.

Originals such as Donald McDangle Boggs, Dan Druff (or Woody) Boggs and Ernestine Boggs have seen the family grow to include the ever increasing Hills, (or Boggs-Hills, or to be completely accurate, Sidebottom-Boggs-Hills), family, some of the more recent of whom are appearing for the first time in this show.

Shows are:

  • Dumbalk Hall, Friday, November 10. Bookings to Bev Hanley on 5664 4344 or Jan Stirling on 5664 4396 or 0488 445 153;
  • Grand Ridge Brewery, Mirboo North, Friday, November 24:; and
  • Korumburra Italian Social Club, Saturday, November 25: Maria Condoluci on 0407 288 822, Arc Gammaldi on 0419 507 410 or Frank Parini on 0456 056 507.




Theatre group is officially home The Star

THE Wonthaggi Theatrical Group (WTG) has a history of being without a home, so last Sunday marked a special occasion for the group, with the official opening of its very own space.

Affectionately known as The Shed, the building at the State Coal Mine in Wonthaggi was officially opened by Eastern Victoria Region MLC Harriet Shing and WTG life member, 90 year old Gwen Derrick.

In 1968, Ms Derrick was coming home from a Lyric Theatre production in Leongatha and wondered why Wonthaggi didnt have a theatre group of its own.

She said despite some naysayers within the community who said the idea would never work, it was something Wonthaggi needed.

We proved the community of Wonthaggi needed a theatre group and proved them wrong, she said.

In 1970, the group took over the lease of Wonthaggis Union Theatre, but had to compete with other user groups for the space, which became particularly difficult at rehearsal time.

Ms Derrick said sometimes the group did not have a performance venue at all.

We performed on the tray of a truck once; mind you it was a warmer weather, summer project, she said.

In 1975, the group managed to purchase the Union Theatre for $15,000, but the euphoria of having a permanent home was short lived.

Because of the poor state of the building, in 1978 the group offered the building to the former Borough of Wonthaggi council for $5000.

In early 1980, the sale was finalised with the provision the space must be kept for the arts in perpetuity, before disaster struck.

I woke up and thought why is it daylight and went outside and saw the flames coming from Graham Street, Ms Derrick said.

I sat in the gutter and watched the theatre burn.

After the fire, the group went into recess. Eventually, the group secured land on Baillieu Street, which was sold 20 years later and provided the seed funding for The Shed.

We wouldnt have thought of starting this project without that seed funding, group vice president Wayne Moloney said.

In 2010, Ms Derrick was awarded the Edith Harry Award for outstanding contribution to musical theatre.

There one constant throughout WTGs history is Gwen Derrick and we wouldnt have that history without her, Mr Moloney said.

Ms Shing praised Ms Derricks determination to start the theatrical group and said it was that sort of persistence that has the group where it is today.


Year 12s celebrate The Star


MARY MacKillop Year 12 students took a break from their studies for the last day of school celebrations on Friday.

Lots of fun costumes were on show to commemorate students final day of their secondary schooling.

Now the class of 2017 has to knuckle down for exams, starting with English on Wednesday, November 1.

Looking good: Rani Knight dressed as singer Katy Perry at Mary MacKillop Catholic Regional Colleges last day for Year 12s last Friday.


Lennies tale keeps on enthralling The Star

THE legendary tale of Lennie Gwyther and Ginger Mick continues to feature on the national stage.

Media coverage of the statue unveiled in the pairs honour in Leongatha recently spread around Australia, as again the nation was captivated by how the nine year old boy from Koonwarra rode his pony Ginger Mick to Sydney and back in 1932, to witness the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Last Tuesday, October 17, McMillan MP retold the story in Federal Parliament.

Congratulations to Leongatha on the presentation and unveiling of the statue to Lennie Gwyther and his horse Ginger Mick. Lennie had a dream at nine years of age to ride from Leongatha/Koonwarra to Sydney for the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. At nine years of age, he did that after his father gave him permission, he said.

In attending the function, there was his sister Beryl Ferrier, sister Leta Gardenal, daughter Mary Gwyther, granddaughter Sally Gwyther, sister-in-law Shirley Gwyther and brother Keith, and many other relatives and friends from near and far.

Bob Newton, a local councillor and former mayor, had a dream that he would like to see a statue of Lennie Gwyther in Leongatha.

Along with his committee members, the Leongatha Chamber of Commerces Peter Watchorn, Brenton Williams and Glenn Wright, Gordon Morrison, along with the Leongatha Historical Societys Robert Sage, Peter Farrell, who did the concrete with Jim Newton, the McDonald brothers, who did the lighting, C&L Stainless, who did the plaque and helped with the lighting, and T&M Southern Craneseverybody got into it from Leongatha and supported this tremendous opening.

Probably the highlights of the day were the shire brass band. Certainly Jessica Stein and the children from the Leongatha Primary School were an absolute highlight of the event and they should be congratulated for their presentation. It was a most memorable day in the heat and I think Im still sunburnt from the day because in the end we werent undercover.

Huge congratulations go to Leongatha. Lennie Gwyther actually shook the hand of the Prime Minister on his way through from Koonwarra. He was attacked by vagabonds and he survived a bushfire. You can imagine the rain and hail and slush he went through, and he arrived to great accolades at the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Theres a photograph of Lennie Gwyther, nine years of age, riding his horse Ginger Mick across the Sydney Harbour Bridge. It was most amazing. A lot of the kids on Saturday had the Lennie Gwyther storm hat on that he had worn all that way. I got the nine-year-old children up around me and said to the whole crowd, and there were hundreds of people there, Have a look at these children, theyre nine years of age; this is the age he hopped on a horse and went from Koonwarra to Sydney.



Councillor apologises The Star

SOUTH Gippsland Shire Councillor Andrew McEwen stands by some of his comments about the Walkerville foreshore committee, despite apologising to the volunteer group.

At the heart of the issue is the foreshore committee asking for more council funding to undertake works.

Cr McEwen recently wrote to committee chair Bill Bray to apologise for stating at the September council meeting he had concerns about the lack of transparency and accountability regarding where the money is going and where it is coming from, and claimed council had not been provided with income and expenditure statements for the project, as well as the nature and value of contracts.

During a presentation to council last Wednesday, Mr Bray said the committee welcomed Cr McEwens unreserved apology, but Cr McEwen disagreed that he had apologised for all of his comments.

The chair of the foreshore committee at the council presentation on the 18th of October indicated that I had given an unreserved apology for all my comments at the previous council meeting in relation to the foreshore committee. My apology was just for the comments made in regard to finances, he said.

Cr McEwen said he had erred in making incorrect statements at the September council meeting after missing an email from Mr Bray that clarified the question asked about finances for the project.

Cr McEwen said he would make an unreserved apology for these comments, which were factually incorrect at tomorrows (Wednesday) council meeting.

Mr Bray told council the committee had been open and accountable, and presented council with a list of public consultation undertaken about the project.

There have been some hurtful comments made by some, not only to me individually but more importantly they have questioned the committees credibility and accountability, he said.

Cr Jeremy Rich said the community had been concerned about the growing cost of the project, and the distance between parking and the boat ramp.

He asked if works had been started without contracts signed. Mr Bray said, No.

The committee is seeking further funding from council towards the cost of rehabilitating the existing road, and building new car and boat trailer parking, retaining walls and a footpath. A seawall has already been reconstructed.

The original cost was based on schematic plans but project costs were revised based on final detailed designs, and have resulted in an increase of about $200,000.

While the committee has the funds to cover this, it has asked council to provide a further $61,850, bringing its total contribution to $192,500. Mr Bray said this would make committee funds available for other foreshore works.

Council officers have recommended council approve extra funding at tomorrows meeting.

Mr Bray said the committee had provided funds for the seawall that would protect a council asset the road and parking.



Call to lift Inverlochs dog rules The Star

SUMMER is fast approaching, bringing with it dog restrictions on Inverlochs beach once again.

Inverloch was left with a sectioned beach off leash, on leash and prohibited following the decision of the former Bass Coast Shire Council.

Only the Screw Creek section is off limits to dog walkers all year round.

However, the Surf Beach, a section between Venus Street and the Esplanade, and the Foreshore Caravan Park will prohibit dog walkers from December 1 until February 28 between the hours of 9am and 6pm.

With a new council in play, Inverloch resident Robert Scott believes its time to revisit some of the restrictions.

Theres no need for the dog restrictions; we should leave it up to people to do the right thing, he said.

Mr Scott said the total ban near Screw Creek should be lifted, and suggested more signage would help protect the hooded plovers.

Mr Scott said off leash area starting at Grandview Grove and ending at Cuttriss Street has been a great success, but it was a popular place for families to go swimming during the peak period.

There were also problems in some of the on leash areas as well, with high tides and natural rock leaving little room for people to walk their dogs.

Many people often forget where they can and cannot walk, as signs are positioned close to the footpath.

Mr Scott suggested opening up the area towards Screw Creek to dog waters to give all beachgoers extra space.

People could play frisbee with their dog in front of the campground. They would just need to take more responsibility, he said.

With the extension, I suggested this problem would end as people could let dogs have a run near their homes and they could walk to the beach and not drive to the off leash area. Less traffic is always a good thing.

It would clear the foreshore of all the different signs that cause confusion. Dog owners are responsible people. I would expect council to enforce the laws that exist regarding picking up after your dog, and putting your dog on a leash near any of the marked plover nesting areas.

Deputy mayor Cr Brett Tessari said council had yet to formally discuss any changes to the dog restrictions.

Do the right thing: Inverlochs Rob Scott believe...


What is Meditation? Shepparton Interfaith Network

Phra Satit Thitadhammo delivered one meditation session on the morning of Saturday, 21 October at the Senior Citizens Centre, Welsford St, Shepparton. Phra Satit Thitadhammo is from the Dhammakaya Meditation Centre, Albury. He addressed the issue of mind, mind management, and methods of reaching awareness of the mind and moving beyond the mind. In this ... Read more...

Monday, 23 October


Return of the cuckoo Focus On Fauna

Surprisingly, we had not recorded a Pallid Cuckoo on our place since 2011, despite it being a regular spring visitor for many years before that. But this year it has returned and we are seeing and hearing Pallid Cuckoos (as well as Fan-tailed Cuckoos and two Bronze-Cuckoos: Horsfields and Shining) not only on our property []

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