Australia Day celebrations at Glenbrook to support bushfire appeal

All profits from Lower Blue Mountains Australia Day celebrations on Glenbrook Park will be donated to Rotary's bushfire appeal.

Club President John Van Der Meer urged all Blue Mountains and Penrith residents to support the Glenbrook celebrations.

"It has become the major attraction for Australia Day in the Mountains and beyond in recent years and our organising committee led by Trevor Lloyd has worked hard to ensure there are attractions for everyone," he said.

"For the price of a gold coin donation as they enter the Park, our Australia Day event is the best value family outing of the summer.

"Australia Day on Glenbrook Park is a costly exercise for our Rotary Club and we are very grateful for the gold coin donations to help meet these costs," he said.

Committee Chairperson Trevor Lloyd thanked his team and the local community for outstanding support.

"The annual Gnome Convention is always a major attraction for families but, once again, an outstanding entertainment tent, tempting array of food stalls, commercial stalls, fun rides for children, the Springwood dog group, veteran motor cars and of course the bush picnic races for kids under 12 years all add up to a great family day out," he explained.

AMBASSADOR FOR GLENBROOK

One of Australia's great show biz personalities, Warren Kermond OAM, has been appointed special Australia Day Ambassador for Lower Blue Mountains Rotary celebrations on Glenbrook Park.

Organising committee chairperson Trevor Lloyd was informed of this outstanding news last Thursday - with the emphasis that Warren has been appointed to ambassadorial duty only at Glenbrook Park and will not be shared with Australian Day functions elsewhere in the Mountains, as has been past practice.

Trevor applauded the appointment, given the popularity of the entertainment marquee on Australia Day at Glenbrook.

Warren Kermond is the product of a successful show biz family and has won rave reviews for performances around the world - New Zealand, Japan and many other parts of Asia, USA (San Francisco, Las Vegas and San Diego), England and South Africa.

The Durban News in South Africa acclaimed the Australian as one of the top cabaret artists every seen in South Africa!

A regular on Australian stage and television, Warren will keep crowds enthralled at Glenbrook with his singing, tap dancing and comedy. He will give several performances on stage as well as presenting the keynote Australia Day address at 11.50am.

He will take time to mingle with the expected large crowd on the park and even assist with judging at the Australian Gnome Convention.

Rotary Club president John Van Der Meer was delighted by the news of a special Ambassador for Glenbrook.

'It is many years since we have had our own ambassador and to secure such a talented performer is a special treat for citizens of the Lower Blue Mountains,' he added.

VOLUNTEERS STILL NEEDED

Rotary's Australia Day ground co-ordinator Peter Agar said organisation of the day received a minor setback when the Air Force Cadets from 323 Squadron were forced to withdraw from the support team this due to circumstances beyond their control.

"Therefore, we would love to hear from community volunteers prepared to assist with the set up and pull down of the event on Saturday afternoon and Sunday.

"Assistance for the whole day - or just an hour or two - will be appreciated," he said.

OFFICIAL OPENING 

Activities will commence with the flag raising ceremony, featuring the Hazelbrook/Lawson/Mt Riverview Girl Guides Colour Party, followed by Welcome to Country in the entertainment tent at 9am.

Susan Wakefield OAM is the 'custodian of the colours' this year and will co-ordinate the flag raising ceremony. Complimentary flag hand wavers will be available for those at the ceremony.

Welcome to Country is always an important fixture on the program, conducted with by Uncle Graeme Cooper.

Entertainment guru Mick Harriden has finalised a top class program which immediately follows the flag raising and Welcome to Country:

  • 9.30 am: Voice Dynamics - Matthew Avery
  • 10.10 am: Blue Mugs Ukulele Group - featuring a Rolling Stones solo.
  • 10.50 am: Natasha Shandlers' Fancy Foot Dancers
  • 11.20 am: Highland Synergy Scottish Dancers - co-ordinated by Julie Thomas
  • 11.50 am: Official Australia Day address - Ambassador Warren Kermond OAM
  • 12.10pm: Blaxland High School - The Bhukelective ukulele
  • 1.45 pm: program ends.

Committee Chairperson Trevor Lloyd said Lower Blue Mountains Rotary was pleased to announce Century 21 Blaxland will sponsor the entertainment tent once again this year.

GNOME CONVENTION

Without doubt, one of the highlights of Australia Day celebrations on Glenbrook Park will be the 16th annual Australia Day Gnome Convention.

The brilliant new display site on the south side of the Glenbrook Tourist Information Centre proved an outstanding success last year - affording easy movement of the large crowds around the entire area. To avoid crowds on Australia Day, Gnome 'carers' may bring their gnomes to the eastern Park Street entrance from 4pm on Saturday, January 25.

Gnomes may be registered via the same gate up until 11am on Australia Day.

Gnome masters David Cook and Trevor Lloyd - again supported by their respective Gnome mistresses Carolyn and Marianne - have worked tirelessly to put another memorable convention in place.

The very popular Gnome Painting tent for children will be well stocked to enable youngsters to test their artistic skills.

Unfortunately, Gnome Doctor Dave has a pressing international commitment and will be missing from Glenbrook Park this year.

Gnome master Cook is pleased to announce the children's favourite exhibit - Trains, Planes and Automobiles from Sydney - will be back again to add colour and action to the Gnome Convention site.

David also announced the 2020 line-up of Gnome categories: painted/decorated gnomes; painted/decorated gnomes - children under 12; working gnomes; Aussie gnomes; sporting gnomes; corporate gnomes; celebrity gnomes.

He said Lower Blue Mountains Rotary and the Gnome Convention were very grateful to acknowledge that long time sponsor Jim Aitken and Partners Real Estate will again donate $50 meal vouchers to Mountain Blue Restaurant in Glenbrook - along with a voucher for free entry to the spectacular Australian Panorama - to the winner of each category.

Bunnings at Valley Heights will also continue to support the Gnome Convention with supply of potted colour and plants to 'dress' the Gnome Convention site.

Local business owners/managers are invited to present their specially decorated gnomes in company colours and uniforms for a bargin advertising charge of $100.

HOLIDAY GNOME HUNT

Six golden gnomes will be carefully placed throughout participating shops in Glenbrook Village to promote interest in the annual Gnome Convention and Australia Day.

Glenbrook Chamber of Commerce will stage another 'Great Golden Gnome Hunt' during the weeks leading into Australia Day. Children are invited to call at 'Foothills Eco' in Ross Street, Glenbrook, or any participating store, to collect the official entry form.

Entrants must search business houses throughout Glenbrook to identify the location of the Golden Gnomes, fill out the entry form and return same to the competition box in Foothills Eco. Special prizes are on offer.

FOOD - GLORIOUS FOOD

Food booth co-ordinator John Van Der Meer has again ensured gastronomical treats for the entire family with another impressive line-up of food stalls for Australia Day on Glenbrook Park.

Some of the treats include - pulled pork 'bergers' from The Smokehouse Blue Mountains, Korean BBQ, St Andrews Uniting Church homemade baking, Tropical Sno, Juice Guy, German Sausage Grill, Zensational Coffee, Family Gozlemi, Springwood Aussie Barbecue, Mini Melt Ice Cream, Natural pancakes and Chip on Strick.

COMMERCIAL STALLS

Similarly, commercial stall co-ordinator Kerry Gunn reports great variety in the line-up of stalls on the main arena - Blue Mountains Creative Art, Glenbrook Players Inc, Springwood Basketball Association, Che Kookaburra, Blue Mountains National Trust, Carla G Photography, Organic Mushrooms, Crafty Quirks, Woodwork Club, Vagabond Travel Gear, Greens Party, Indian Henna Artist, Triiffic imports, Dusty Creations, Blue Mts Woodturners, Glenbrook Historical Society, Railway portraits, Laura's Toys and Glowies, Cams Candles, Hatz N Caps, Serenity Clothing, Blaxland Football Club and 2WP Marketing.

Kerry Gunn has issued a special reminder to all Australia Day visitors to be sure to try their luck on the very generous Lower Blue Mountains Chocolate Wheel - run by 'Carnival Kings' Bruce Bailey and Terry Marshall.

CAR ENTHUSIASTS 'HEAVEN'

Arena attractions co-ordinator Brian Bonham has created a car enthusiasts heaven with three major car clubs taking up the offer to display their vehicles on Australia Day at Glenbrook.

The Mustang Car Club has indicated it will have 25-30 vehicles on show, the VW Car Club a further 12 cars, and the popular Austin A40 Car Club another 12 - 15 cars in the veteran variety.

Mr Bonham indicated both RFS and Glenbrook Fire Brigades will have units and staff on show at Australia Day (if available) - which will provide an excellent opportunity for members of the public to pay tribute to these brave volunteers.

Another popular attraction is the Wild Rides Australia - offering motor bike rides around Glenbrook during the day.

Mr Bonham said children have not been forgotten and Festival Amusements have agreed to bring their jumping castle and flying chair ride to Glenbrook.

SPRINGWOOD DOGS

The impressive Springwood Dogs Training group will again entertain the large morning crowd at Australia Day on Glenbrook Park.

Besides enjoying the dogs' amazing feats in centre ring, members of the public have the opportunity to talk with dog owners and obtain contact details for their own use.

CHILDREN'S ACTIVITIES

The new children's activities area, adjacent to the CWA building has proved a most successful site and the usual attractions will be provided free of charge, featuring face painting, puzzles, threading, and craft and colouring competitions.

Parents are reminded that this is not a 'baby sitting' service and they are required to stay with their children whilst they are participating in various activities.

Bush picnic athletic events for children under 12 have always proved popular and every child wins a special Australia Day ribbon for competing.