Crowds turned out to celebrate at Currie Park

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Crowds turned out to celebrate at Currie Park

December 9, 2019

It was a community affair on Saturday 23 November as some of Euroa’s best known groups joined the Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria to mark its 150th anniversary.

The Euroa Citizens Band, Euroa Ukulele Group, entertainer Greg Dudley, the Euroa Little Theatre Group provided entertainment throughout the afternoon; the local CWA and APEX fed the 150-strong crowd, and the Euroa Urban Fire Brigade were on hand to show what was what in a fire truck.

The sense of community was very much in Strathbogie Shire Council’s Deputy Mayor John Mason’s mind when he officially opened the Festival afternoon.

“I am delighted to be here, and to celebrate not only your 150th anniversary but also to acknowledge what a thriving, healthy and happy community Currie Park is,” he said.

He drew on the Association’s history, noting that 150 years ago, it had started through the vision and generosity of well-known Victorian individuals and families playing a role in building homes, and donating to each and every village.

“Ian Rollo Currie – an influential local grazier – was influential in the creation of Currie Park – and indeed the Berwick OCAV village. His legacy enabled 20 independent cottages to be built here in 1978.

That legacy has continued through the Ian Rollo Currie Foundation which have over the last year donated to establish the community room, eight assisted living apartments and the upgrade of many of the cottages too,” Deputy Mayor Mason said.

He, together with former Mayoress and well-known Euroa citizen Esme Stringer, Currie Park resident Ellen Doyle, and OCAV’s President Kevin Neville, buried a time capsule with a silver trowel dating from 1869 as part of the ceremony.

The afternoon included highly popular house tours led by Hayley Stokes, with many people coming from Melbourne and other local areas to find out more about community life at Currie Park and retirement living options.

Residents were out in force selling plants they had grown; the trash and treasure stall drew bargain hunters, children took part in colouring in and face painting; families took part in the old-fashioned game Aunt Sally – which had been painted by Currie Park’s resident artist Gillian Coates.

“When people come into Currie Park, and they see all that is on offer here, they are amazed. It is a hidden part of Euroa, and we hope that our celebration makes it a little less secret,” OCAV CEO Phillip Wohlers said.

Ellen Doyle, resident and 150th Celebration Coordinator, said she was thrilled with the response and the interest shown by the many people who came in.

“We caught up with old friends, made new acquaintances and it was a joyful fun day,” she said.

"There is nothing I would change that would make my life any better. I have two loving sons and family and I thank God every day that OCAV took me in when I had nothing," said Jill Dale, Braeside Park resident.

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