HOW PORT DOUGLAS CWA TAKES THE CAKE,
Port Douglas branch punches above its weight in state fundraising
“WOW, there’s some weight in this . . .”
Century 21 principal Phil Holloway struggles to balance the platter of fruit cake with one hand as he calls for the opening bids from the room full of punters.
Friday is always cake day at the CWA hall in Port Douglas but this one is special.
It’s the CWA’s statewide 57th Cookery Competition (and fundraising auction -hence Mr Holloway’s starring role as auctioneer).
The Port Douglas branch – membership 22 – is defending nothing less than the state trophy for fundraising, an accolade it took off Innisfail in 2009 and has retained ever since.
The local branch punches above its weight in many things. Fundraising (for the rural crisis fund), public speaking, photography, and other skills in competitions with other branches at the state conference – Port Douglas has proudly iced all of those things too.
And boy do they rock a kitchen, not least cakes and jams, the ever popular items on sale every Friday at the CWA hall. Even tourists know about it.
“They often long for some home cooking,” says branch member Cristine Castle.
Phil Holloway cleverly bags a couple of the prize winning entries for a trip away. The shortbread hadn’t escaped his attention, along with a chocolate cake.
He hefts another entry into the air – “Ginger chiffon” – “I don’t even know what this is,” he admits.
There’s solid bidding in the room with some halves of cakes reaching 15 and 16 dollars.
Buyers will not be disappointed. The cakes look amazing, and the illustrious judge, up from Cairns, confirms the quality.
“The exhibits are excellent,” says Jan Anderson, who regularly judges cooking competitions in shows from Townsville, Ingham, and Cairns to Atherton.
“For a place like Port Douglas they’ve got top grade cooks, the standard and quality of the cooking is absolutely marvellous. They’ve used a lot of tropical fruits, which is really good. A credit to the ladies and the men.
“These are top grade, I can tell you that.”
For a place like Port Douglas they’ve got top grade cooks, the standard and quality of the cooking is absolutely marvellous
Culinary judge Jan Anderson
Auctioneer Phil Holloway is an old hand at cake auctions
Eleanor with Sam and Sascha deciding what to bid for
Maggie Millidge, Janet Steele-Barnett and Cristine Castle
Cake convenor Alice Jenkin (left) and judge Jan Anderson
President Patricia Gilbert