Local News at Your Fingertips

Australia Day Celebrations across Wattle Range

2014-01-27 15.53.06

The flag is raised on Australia Day at Millicent.

by S Lowe 5THE FM’s newsonline wattlerangenow.

Celebrations were in full swing across Wattle Range on Australia Day Sunday 26th January 2014, beginning with celebratory breakfast; followed by medal presentation ceremonies for Australia Day Citizen of the Year Awards

Millicent Celebrations.

Millicent attracted over 500 people to the breakfast which was a combined effort of local service groups and the Wattle Range Council and was held at Jubilee Park.

Winners of the Australia Day Awards presented at Millicent were Australian Day Citizen of the Year Bill Cull and Australia Day Young Citizen of the Year Kathleen Woods. The awards recognized their outstanding contributions to their community. The Awards were presented by Councillor Peter Dunnicliffe.

(Kathleen Woods speech follows this story)



Centre: Wattle Range Councillor  Peter Dunnicliffe,Young Citizen of the Year Kathleen Woods,         

 Citizen of the Year Bill Cull and Millicent Lions Member Des Knoll.

Beachport Rivoli Bay Lions Breakfast.

Rivoli Bay Lions, provided breakfast at the Lagoon at Beachport, and over 600 attended this years breakfast in idyllic beachside weather.  Rivoli Bay Lions Club President Frank Boylan welcomed everyone and after a small technical glitz decided that the National Anthem could be just as well be sung ‘acapella’ in the absence of a piano and technology failure..

“So much is not known about the people or the area,” he said, “and occasions like this give us the opportunity to share this history.”

“Many times a Citizen of the Year recipient’s parents have also been strong community minded members, contributing much to their community and this is the case with this years winner Elaine Donaldson,” he said. In 1965, there were no roads in and out of Beachport, just tracks and  Elaine’s father Rob Somerville was the engineer behind the building of the roads we enjoy today.
“If any has wondered where the rubble from the Woak Wine Cutting went, it was sold to the Council and used to build the road between Beachport and Robe and  the road to Millicent was built where the train tracks once were. 

Councillor Ben Treloar presented the Australia Day Citizen of the Year Award to Elaine Donaldson, listing some of her achievements as; employed by Council since January 23rd 1969 and retired 2012, managed the Beachport office of the Visitor Information Centre, manned the radio on Ash Wednesday and was one of 8 women trained to do so, served on the committee of Lake George, District National Trust since 1992 – 7 years as secretary and 30 years as chairman, won Hon National Trust Dr Mildred McArthur Award 1999 is well-respected in her community, an obvious asset, and has a love for her town.

Elaine responded by recognising the volunteers that serve their community; fire trucks operators, emergency workers, ambulance, Visitor Information Centre. schools, Beachport District Dev Committee and Lions. everyone who works to put on the Duck Race, Market Days, Australia Day events and the Triathalon. Elaine said she often wonders where everyone get the energy from but believed that the volunteers make Beachport a great place to live and thanked the organisers for her award.

Young Citizen of the Year recipient Rachel Smith, yr 12 student at Kangaroo Inn Area School,  has earned the title of the Cattle Whisperer because of her ability to tame even the most energetic steer, often weighing several hundred kilos. She has often spent her lunchtime working with the cattle and has been involved in the cattle breeding program at school. Rachel has spent time on the Student Representative Council, WREN (educational network), and worked on the 50th Anniversary Committee of Kangaroo Inn Area School. She organised a school knitting group to knit for the homeless and volunteered at Hart Court.

Rachel said she was grateful for the award, thanking her teacher for nominating her, the Wattle Range Council, and Rivoli Bay Lions President Frank Boylan, who had all contributed to the awards in time and effort. She was grateful to her family who always supported her to reach her goals.  She wished everyone a Happy Australia Day and asked that everyone appreciate the country we live in. 

Australia Day Community Events to receive the awards were the Beachport Duck Race and the Glencoe Woolshed 150th Celebration.               

John Zwar  of Coonawarra and Peter DeKoning were awarded Australia Day Citizen of the Year Awards and Ella Kidman, Bradley Merritt of Penola received  the Young Citizen Awards.

Millicent’s Janice Nitschke Manager of Libraries in Wattle Range was announced  recipient of the Member of the Order of Australia (AM) and Sue Charlton of Beachport was also awarded the AM.

Janice Nitschke will be interviewed live on 5THE FM (107.7) at 10-00 am on Wednesday 29th January and her interview will feature on wattlerangenow later in the day.


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