A few months ago, the Parks Committee received correspondence from DELWP requesting nominations for people who had provided outstanding service for our committee of management for the reserve.
A quick discussion with John Cargill, and we both agreed that the obvious person to be nominated was Russell. A nomination was submitted (see below), and just as obviously was warmly accepted by DELWP.
The recognition service was held on Wednesday 20 November and was attended by 35 – 40 people keen to show their respect for Rusty’s achievements. Over thirty one years, Rusty has been on the committee with a large number of people, as the attached photo shows. It was a lovely convivial evening, with lots of memories shared.
Russell Northe, MLA was an apology but forwarded a letter to be read in his absence, congratulating Rusty on his long voluntary service, and his passion for not only the Park, but also the community. He also congratulated the entire Parks Committee for the great facility and community resource they have developed.
Special thanks to the Boolarra Bowls Club who undertook the catering and put on a great spread.
In other news from the Park, we have been successful in obtaining funding from the Latrobe Valley Authority, which in conjunction with additional funding from the Park itself, Latrobe City and the BCDG, and a contribution from the Football/Netball Club gives us over $100,000 to upgrade the power supply to the reserve, and install an irrigation system. This is a great outcome which will really set the park up for future development. The Folk Festival have also very kindly donated an Atco hut, which we will look to fit out as a toilet block to be installed over in the equestrian area.
Thanks to the great organising work by Jackie McGlade, we also had a very productive working bee in late October. With participation from a number of the user groups. We will look to have another in the near future.
Nomination words to DELWP
The Memorial Park and the many activities that are undertaken there, are a key community asset and the improvements that have been undertaken there over the past 30+ years reflect very highly on the efforts of the local committee of management, and the user groups within the reserve. The Park consists of 40 acres of land and boasts a range of sporting, recreation and community facilities which are heavily utilised by a variety of user groups and individuals. The cooperative nature in which these facilities are shared, maintained and improved by a range of groups is a credit to the community.
Russell has been an outstanding contributor, not only to this committee, but to the entire community of Boolarra. In 2000 he was successfully nominated by the community as a torchbearer for the Olympic relay.
He has been a member of the Parks Committee for over thirty years, commencing in his early twenties. He held the role of secretary for several years, and has a very strong feel for the history of the park and the relationships between the various user groups.
He is very well liked and respected within the community and his opinion and his voice of reason always carries heavy weight in our discussions.
However perhaps his major contribution has been his role in the development and maintenance of infrastructure within the reserve.
Over his time on the committee he has spent thousands of voluntary hours down at the reserve installing fences and waterlines, laying electrical conduits and plumbing, fixing drainage lines, clearing fallen trees, painting stock yards and oval fences. He is our go-to man if anything needs to be installed, either to do it himself, or to chase up tradies or suppliers to do it. Then if anything goes wrong, he is down there fixing it up.
He has also overseen the watering program for the oval, which is a very labour intensive process (hopefully resolved this summer), and he and Jackie (who has also been on the committee nine years) go down on a fortnightly basis to clean the toilets and any litter.
We are very lucky as a committee to have “Rusty” and he thoroughly deserves the recognition through this program.
Boolarra Memorial Park.