Salute to our shining stars

January 24, 2018

Australia Day award recipients, from left, Carl Watkins, Merle Salisbury, Jeanette Dedman from the Lions Club, Judy Hutchins and Robyn Donovan on behalf of the Heathcote AP&H Society.

HEATHCOTE, meet your Australia Day award winners.

There are many people in and around the community who work day and night to make Heathcote the great town that it is.

Some of those people will be rewarded for their service on Australia Day.

The four award winners are Merle Salisbury, Carl Watkins, Judy Hutchins and the Heathcote Agricultural, Pastoral and Horticultural Society.

Merle is a long-time local identity who has been involved in the school and the church for many years. Merle has also been involved in the Senior Citizens for over 13 years in many different roles. She has provided amazing help for her neighbours at the Wintringham Housing Estate, constantly providing for all their needs.

Carl joined the Rural Fire Brigade in 1974 and has held several positions along the way, including captain. Carl has led many teams to face bushfires, and the Fire Brigade has grown immensely under his leadership. Carl is always available to speak to the community and help out where he can.

Judy arrived in Heathcote in 1988 and became a co-founding member of the youth group and basketball club. In recent years Judy has taken on presidency of the Heathcote Artists Inc where she has been the driving force behind many initiatives such as the ‘come and try’ days, and running art activities at the nursing home.

The Heathcote Agricultural, Pastoral and Horticultural Society have managed to maintain the showgrounds all year round with minimal financial assistance, including setting up the longest running community event in Heathcote – the annual show. They are a small band of volunteers who continue to work tirelessly to keep the grounds in order.

The Lions Club will host the day at Barrack Reserve Park on High Street, with the official ceremony beginning at 9.30am.

A barbecue breakfast will be available for all in attendance and local performers will follow the ceremony.

Special guests will include Lisa Chester MP and Councillor Yvonne Wrigglesworth, who will both present the Heathcote and District Community Awards.

Poet Geoffrey Graham and musician Mariah McCarthy will perform, so make sure you get down to Barrack Park Reserve and enjoy the day.

The Mia Mia celebrations will be held at the Mia Mia Mechanics Institute and will begin at 8am.

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