2018 YEAR IN RE­VIEW

Myrtleford Times - - Front Page -

‘MISTER HIS­TORY’ HON­OURED

MYRTLE­FORD’S John Tay­lor says it “took a while to come back in from the let­ter­box” on Oc­to­ber 13, last year.

He’d found in the day’s postal de­liv­ery an en­ve­lope marked ‘Pri­vate and con­fi­den­tial’ and printed with an in­signia show­ing a crown above a sprig of wat­tle.

In it was a let­ter from the Aus­tralian Hon­ours Sec­re­tar­iat at Can­berra’s ‘Yar­ralumla’ – the of­fi­cial res­i­dence of the Gover­nor-Gen­eral – ad­vis­ing Mr Tay­lor that he was “be­ing con­sid­ered for the award of the Or­der of Aus­tralia Medal” for his ser­vice to the Myrtle­ford com­mu­nity. It sought his ac­cep­tance.

The award – the means by which the na­tion recog­nises “out­stand­ing and mer­i­to­ri­ous ser­vice” – was an­nounced in Fri­day’s Aus­tralia Day hon­ours for the long­stand­ing and ex­tra­or­di­nary con­tri­bu­tion which the man who is con­sid­ered to be ‘Mister His­tory’ has made to his town, com­mu­nity and Alpine Shire.

Mr Tay­lor has been Myrtle­ford and Dis­trict His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety pres­i­dent since 2005, Myrtle­ford Ceme­tery Trust chair­man since 2008, Friends of Re­form Hill pres­i­dent since 2001 and, in 2010, a found­ing mem­ber of the Alpine Shire Her­itage Net­work.

EXPO EX­CEEDS ES­TI­MATES

THE highly an­tic­i­pated Wild Deer Hunt­ing, Guid­ing and Fish­ing expo has gone above and be­yond ex­pec­ta­tions with or­gan­is­ers say­ing up to 12,500 peo­ple at­tended the event across the week­end.

It was the first time the expo had been held in Myrtle­ford and the move to the Ovens Val­ley ap­pears to have paid off with vis­i­tors and lo­cals heav­ily sup­port­ing the two-day event.

Expo co­or­di­na­tion as­sis­tant Adam Minch­ing­ton was thrilled with the way the event un­folded.

“The crowds were con­stant all day and I haven’t spo­ken to any­one who wasn’t just blown away by the crowd we got,” he said.

“We hoped for 10,000 or 11,000 but with a new venue we didn’t re­ally know what to ex­pect. “We had great sup­port from the lo­cal com­mu­nity. “The Li­ons Club was ab­so­lutely un­be­liev­able; we prob­a­bly couldn’t have done it with­out them.”

More than 500 ex­hibitors packed into 250 avail­able sites at the for­mer to­bacco co-op build­ing dis­play­ing ev­ery­thing from fish­ing and camp­ing gear to taxi­dermy.

CAR CRASH CON­CERN

ALPINE Shire Coun­cil will look into what it can do to erase park­ing is­sues in Pore­punkah af­ter four car ac­ci­dents in the space of seven weeks.

Pore­punkah’s main street and the nearby river­side park­land un­der­went a $1.7 mil­lion makeover last year, a project that left dif­fer­ing opin­ions from lo­cal res­i­dents and busi­ness own­ers.

The ser­vice lane on Ni­chol­son Street was re­moved and the road changed to two lanes while the to­tal num­ber of parks has in­creased but has re­sulted in no spa­ces for long ve­hi­cles.

Alpine Shire Coun­cil di­rec­tor as­sets Will Jere­mey said res­i­dents had in re­cent weeks raised con­cerns in re­gard to four car ac­ci­dents, the first just be­fore Christ­mas.

Three of the four ac­ci­dents have seen cars back out into on­com­ing traf­fic with at least one ve­hi­cle writ­ten off while the other in­ci­dent saw two ve­hi­cles side­swipe each other.

“From our side we’re aware there has been four traf­fic ac­ci­dents in Pore­punkah but as far as we know there’s been no se­ri­ous in­juries,” Mr Jeremy said.

RE­LAY FOR LIFE CAN­CELLED

THE Alpine Shire Re­lay for Life has been can­celled for 2018 af­ter fail­ing to at­tract enough par­tic­i­pants by June 20.

At the start of June, or­gan­is­ers put a call out for more peo­ple to get in­volved in the Cancer Coun­cil fundraiser af­ter just four teams had reg­is­tered.

But it proved un­suc­cess­ful as only three more teams signed up by the cut off and or­gan­is­ers deemed that there weren’t enough par­tic­i­pants to go ahead with the event.

What would have been the Alpine Shire’s eighth re­lay was sched­uled to take place at Bright on Oc­to­ber 13.

Bright res­i­dent and vet­eran Re­lay for Life par­tic­i­pant Michelle Chal­well said it was a shame the event had to be can­celled.

“It’s re­ally dis­ap­point­ing, it’s such a great event that is well-worth sup­port­ing so it’s un­for­tu­nate that we didn’t get the num­bers,” she said.

Ms Chal­well said some peo­ple that had reg­is­tered for the Alpine Shire event will form a team to par­tic­i­pate at Wan­garatta’s Re­lay for Life on Oc­to­ber 20.

TAXI RUN TO RE­TURN

BRIGHT is re­gain­ing a taxi ser­vice.

The new cab ser­vice will be up and run­ning in a week’s time with Mel­bourne cou­ple Jack Hodge and Vicki McCro­han re­lo­cat­ing their Frankston taxi fleet to the Ovens Val­ley.

Bright hasn’t had its own taxi since the Wil­son fam­ily stopped op­er­at­ing in De­cem­ber 2016 be­cause of ris­ing op­er­a­tional costs and in­creases in vol­un­teer-driven and cour­tesy trans­port.

“We’re go­ing to be feel­ing our way a lit­tle bit, but we know there is a de­mand for a taxi,” Mr Hodge said.

“Ev­ery­one we’ve spo­ken to has said Bright needs it, so we’ll be bring­ing up what we were us­ing in the Frankston cab area which is two ve­hi­cles and two buses.”

One of Mr Hodge’s Frankston driv­ers will join him in Bright while long-time lo­cal taxi driver Alan Muller has also been em­ployed.

“We know there’s go­ing to be busy times and quiet times, but we plan on be­ing avail­able 24/7,” Mr Hodge said.

U3A PROVES POP­U­LAR

UNIVER­SITY of the Third Age (U3A) is prov­ing an over­whelm­ing suc­cess with lo­cals flock­ing to the wide va­ri­ety of classes on of­fer.

Ital­ian and Ger­man les­sons, cook­ing, mem­oir writ­ing, Shake­speare and gar­den­ing classes as well as bush walk­ing, Lifeball (sta­tionery net­ball) and board game af­ter­noons are just some of the ac­tiv­i­ties be­ing en­joyed.

Sec­re­tary Jan Mock said the re­sponse U3A had re­ceived was be­yond ex­pec­ta­tions.

“We started Feb­ru­ary 7 and I was hop­ing we would have 100 mem­bers within two years, we had that in five weeks and have about 130 now,” she said.

Ms Mock said so­cial­is­ing and mak­ing friends was the most im­por­tant as­pect with shar­ing knowl­edge and learn­ing new skills a dis­tant se­cond.

“One lady sent us an email say­ing she’s been liv­ing here for 30 years but through U3A is now mak­ing some new and in­ter­est­ing friends,” Ms Mock said.

“I used to be a teacher here and I’ve lived here since I was a kid so I know a fair few around town but there’s peo­ple join­ing that I’ve never seen be­fore.

FIX FOR BLACK SPOTS

ALPINE Coun­cil and the com­mu­nity have wel­comed the news that two of the Alpine Shire’s most iso­lated ar­eas will get im­proved mo­bile phone cov­er­age.

Kan­coona and the Buck­land Val­ley have been in­cluded in round three of the Vic­to­rian Mo­bile Black Spot Project.

The two com­mu­ni­ties are among 28 lo­ca­tions across the state that will ben­e­fit from much needed mo­bile phone tow­ers.

Kan­coona’s long awaited tower will be pro­vided by Op­tus while the Buck­land Val­ley tower will be de­liv­ered by Tel­stra.

Alpine Shire Coun­cil chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Char­lie Bird said the re­cent an­nounce­ment was great news for both com­mu­ni­ties.

“We’ve been work­ing with Cathy McGowan and also the state govern­ment to get these tow­ers for a long time,” he said.

“Both have been among our top pri­or­ity tow­ers since the black spot fund­ing pro­gram be­gan so it’s re­ally pleas­ing to see these tow­ers com­mit­ted to.

“When you think about pub­lic safety and from an emer­gency man­age­ment per­spec­tive to be able to ef­fec­tively com­mu­ni­cate is re­ally im­por­tant.

EX­CIT­ING NEW AP­PROACH

THE 2019 Myrtle­ford Fes­ti­val will take an ex­cit­ing new ap­proach, with main fes­ti­val events and the an­nual pa­rade to be held at the Myrtle­ford Show­grounds.

The scenic drive­way and treescape will make a stun­ning set­ting for a new fire­works dis­play in the evening and a new he­li­copter Duck Drop will give en­trants the chance to win up to $1000 cash.

Alpine Shire had made plans to en­sure that the iconic fes­ti­val and the much needed Myrtle­ford Alpine Bet­ter Places road­works could co­in­cide with each other but fol­low­ing a re­cent com­mit­tee meet­ing with the fes­ti­val’s or­gan­is­ers, it was de­cided the rein­vig­o­rat­ing change would be for the best.

New fes­ti­val pres­i­dent, He­len McDougall, said it was im­por­tant the de­ci­sion was made early to give or­gan­is­ers as much time as pos­si­ble to de­liver an­other im­proved event.

“We are hop­ing to use this op­por­tu­nity to bring as many events into the one lo­ca­tion for ease of ac­cess, and will be hold­ing dis­cus­sions with all stake­hold­ers in the com­ing weeks,” she said.

JULY 4, 2018

FEB­RU­ARY 14, 2018

JAN­UARY 31, 2018

MARCH 7, 2018

OC­TO­BER 24, 2018

AU­GUST 1, 2018

AU­GUST 8, 2018

JULY 18, 2018

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