Hu­man whale grows and grows

Central and North Burnett Times - - ESCAPE - — Clair Mor­ton

PORT Stephens loves its whales – so much so that each year for the past six years, res­i­dents have gath­ered on the beach in an at­tempt to set a new world record for the largest hu­man whale. This year was no ex­cep­tion.

Ar­riv­ing at Fin­gal Bay Surf Club on the fi­nal day of the month-long Na­turefest, we were greeted by a drum­ming cir­cle and mar­ket stalls.

But it was over a small hill and on to the sand that the real ac­tion was hap­pen­ing.

Set out in the sand were a num­ber of sticks, which don’t look like much from ground level.

But Imag­ine Cruises owner Frank Fu­ture, who had a vi­sion and ini­ti­ated the an­nual event, di­rected par­tic­i­pants with the aid of a speak­er­phone in one hand.

As peo­ple poured on to the sand to fill in the gaps you could al­most taste the an­tic­i­pa­tion, min­gled with the un­cer­tainty of whether last year’s record of 940 peo­ple would tum­ble.

But there were some who were cer­tain.

“I’m go­ing to be in the Guin­ness Book of World Records,” a young girl who had just be­come part of the whale’s mouth told her mum mat­ter of factly.

Then the drones started to fly over, fol­lowed by a he­li­copter. Af­ter wav­ing so hard our arms felt like they were go­ing to fall off, and hav­ing a good chat to the friendly lo­cals we were flanked by, the hu­man whale slowly dis­persed as peo­ple peeled off to live out the rest of their Satur­day.

Just hours later, the drone footage ap­peared on the Port Stephens Face­book page, along with the con­fir­ma­tion that with more than 1000 peo­ple reg­is­tered, we had all been part of a Guin­ness World Record.

Some­times it is worth be­ing cer­tain.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

◗ Visi­tors and lo­cals gather near Fin­gal Bay Surf Club in a world record at­tempt to make the largest hu­man whale.

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