Australia Day 2020

The MidCoast Council Australia Day celebrations will be held at the Forster Sports Complex, Lake Street, Forster, as part of the Saltwater Freshwater Festival.

The formal ceremony will begin at 8.30am with flag placement, Ambassador’s Address by Superintendent Kam Baker AFSM, Young Speaker’s Address by Great Lakes College leaders, Citizenship Ceremony and presentation of Australia Day Awards.

A morning tea will be served after the ceremony.

Come along and celebrate our National Day!

Celebrations will also be held in communities across the region - see below.


Our Australia Day Ambassador

 Kam-Baker.jpg

Superintendent Kam Baker AFSM is the District Manager for the NSW Rural Fire Service, MidCoast District and is this year’s very deserving Australia Day Ambassador.

It’s been a stressful and difficult time for everyone at the RFS and Kam has been busy driving the local effort at the control centre throughout this horrific fire season.

Supt. Baker joined the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSWRFS) as a volunteer member of the Patonga Beach Brigade of the Gosford District in 1979 and worked through the ranks to Group Officer.

He then qualified as a telecommunication technical officer and became a salaried officer in the NSWRFS in 1993, taking on the Fire Control Officer role for the Gloucester Shire Council.

Following the council amalgamation, Kam was promoted to the role of District Manager for the MidCoast Rural Fire District that includes Port Macquarie Hastings, MidCoast and Lord Howe Island.

Supt. Baker is a highly respected and decorated officer of the NSWRFS, specialising in incident command and aerial firefighting operations.

He has been deployed nationally and internationally to assist in numerous firefighting efforts, including leading a full Incident Management Team into Alberta Canada in 2015 to combat fires within the Province.

He was awarded the National Medal for Service in 1999, Canberra Emergency Medal in 2003, and the Australian Fire Service Medal in 2007, before being awarded District Manager of the Year in 2016 by the Assistant Commissioner of the NSWRFS.

Kam has more recently lead the firefighting operations in the MidCoast area as Incident Controller since August 2019.

He is a highly respected leader, passionate about protecting and preserving communities, habitat and wildlife and supporting his incredible army of volunteers,

What an incredible ambassador. We cannot thank Kam and his team enough for their amazing work on the MidCoast and beyond, a true Australian hero. 



Community organised ceremonies & activities

Bulahdelah 

Courthouse Museum, 2 Anne Street, Bulahdelah - 5pm onwards
Hosted by Bulahdelah Historical Society
Free sausage sizzle, free entry to museum, Australian trivia, bush poetry, live music, Australian themed talk/slides.
Held in the gardens, weather permitting (otherwise held inside the museum)
Enquiries: Kevin Carter - ph: 0458 021 006

Coomba Park

CoombaFest, Coomba Park Foreshore - 8.30am - 6pm
8:30am - Flag raising ceremony
9.00am - Entertainment commences - jumping castle, food stalls, live music from multiple bands
9.30am - 11.30am – Kids races/raffle
11.45am - Raft race
A full day’s event filled with fun for the whole family.
Enquiries: Jed Silver, CoombaFest Event Co-ordinator -  Phone: 0416 062 210 - email: emailjed@me.com
Promotional video: https://youtu.be/a1gOMldzOj8

Forster

MidCoast Council Official Ceremony  

Forster Sports Complex, Lake Street, Forster - see above for details

Pilot Hill Flag Raising Ceremony

Organised by Rotary Club of Great Lakes
Pilot Hill Reserve, Forster - 9am
Enquiries: Ian Croker - ph: 0409 156 563

Activities

Club Forster, 19 Strand Street, Forster - 11am - 2pm
FREE - entertainment by "The Coads", sausage sizzle, jumping castles, face painting, fairy floss
Enquiries: Eddie Youngblood - ph: 6591 6591

Gloucester

Ceremony

Hosted by Gloucester Australia Day Committee 
Billabong Park, Gloucester (in case of wet weather the ceremony will be held at Gloucester Recreation Centre) - 8am - 10.30am
BBQ breakfast, flag raising ceremony, awards presentation including Australia Day Awards, Colouring-in Competition, Best Dressed Competition, Best Business Displays.

Activities

Pool Gala - Gloucester Olympic Swimming Pool - free entry 11am - 6pm
BBQ available
Enquiries for Gloucester events: Janine Mitchell (Secretary) 6558 9506 or Luke Hester (President) 0425 255 428.

Hallidays Point

Ceremony 

Black Head beach, near the pool - 7am - 9am
Hosted by Hallidays Point Lions Club
7am - Free breakfast - sausage sizzle, drinks
8am - Flag raising ceremony, special guests Dr David Gillespie MP, Stephen Bromhead MP, local Ambassador Francina Mills and presentation of Citizen of the Year
Light music provided
Enquiries: Noel McManus - ph: 0458 904 149 - email: aussienoelmcmanus@yahoo.com.au

Activities

Australia Day Vintage & Classic Car Display - Wylie Breckenridge Park, Black Head - 9am - 2pm
Hosted by the Great Lakes Historic Automobile Club Inc. and the Taree Historic Motor Club Inc.
Annual car, motorbike & stationary engines display
Anyone with a suitable vehicle is invited to bring along their pride and joy and join us
Catering is supplied by Hallidays Point Lions Club
Enquiries: Arthur Broadley - ph: 0423 383 596 - email: glhac@outlook.com

Harrington

Function Centre at IGA Complex, Caledonia Street, Harrington (opposite Library) - 8am onwards
Free sausage sizzle breakfast - hosted by Harrington Lions Club
Free damper - supplied by RSL Women's Auxiliary
Flag raising ceremony and presentations:
Citizen of the Year
- Senior Citizen of the Year
- Senior Sportsperson of the Year
- Volunteer of the Year
- Youth Volunteer of the Year
- Junior Citizen of the Year
- Junior Sportsperson of the Year
Enquiries: Cliff Hoare, Harrington Lions Club - ph: 0418 268 998 - email: wedig@ihug.com.au

North Arm Cove

Heros Beach, North Arm Cove - 12noon onwards
Free sausage sizzle - hosted by YESS Committee (Youth Encouragement Sport Support)
BYO chairs, tables and refreshments
Toilets provided
Note: Volunteers needed on Saturday 25 January for on-site clean up. Please contact Joan or Robyn if interested.
Enquiries: Joan Williams - ph: 0432 255 449 or Robyn Mirabito - ph: 0411 879 060

Old Bar

Ceremony

Old Bar Park (adjacent to Caravan Park) - 7am onwards
7am - Free sausage sizzle breakfast hosted by Old Bar Lions Club, including damper, tea and coffee
8am - Flag raising ceremony, presentation of Local Australian of the Year
Bring chair or picnic blanket
Enquiries: Sue Lathwell, Old Bar Lions Club - ph: 0407 236 139 - email: sue_ince@yahoo.com.au

Activities

Old Bar Tavern, Saltwater Road, Old Bar - 12pm onwards
Beer pong from 12pm
Pie eating contest from 3pm
Thong throwing contest from 4pm
Chilli wing contest from 5pm
Entertainment will include soloist Gary Harro from 4pm - 7pm and soloist Luke Ligtenberg from 7pm
Enquiries: Melissa Garnett - ph: 0475 200 428 

Taree 

Queen Elizabeth Park, Taree - 8.30am - 11.30am
Free BBQ breakfast hosted by Taree Lions Club
Morning tea hosted by Taree Quota Club
Presentations:
- Citizen of the Year
- Sportsperson of the Year
- Community Group of the Year
- Community Achiever of the Year
Entertainment: Manning Valley Concert Band, Ukulele Players, local artist Jim Bird, face painting and games for the kids
Some chairs provided but you are welcome to bring your own chair or picnic blanket, plus hat and sunscreen
Enquiries: Rhonda Futterleib - ph: 0437 001 248

Tea Gardens / Hawks Nest

Moira Parade Park, Hawks Nest (near Binda Street Wharf) - 8am - 12pm
Hosted by Tea Gardens Lions Club
8.00am – Breakfast, all morning
9.00am – Flag Raising ceremony
9.30am – Presentation of Citizen of the Year
10.30am – Children’s games and races
Includes BBQ (bacon & egg rolls, sausage sizzle), lamingtons, cold drinks, coffee van, ice cream van.
Great music and entertainment
Historical Society and Family History stalls
Bring a chair, hat and sunscreen
Enquiries: Linda Allen - ph: 0409 461 165

Tuncurry

The Sporties Tuncurry, 65 Beach Street, Tuncurry - 4pm onwards
Free entertainment by "The Coads" plus sausage sizzle and giveaway prizes
The Sporties Raffle (tickets on sale from 4.30pm - drawn at 5.30pm)
Enquiries: Dean - ph: 6554 9270 or Eddie Youngblood, Club Forster - ph: 6591 6591

Wingham

Ceremony

Wingham Central Park, near the log - 7.30am onwards
7.30am - BBQ breakfast hosted by Wingham Rotary Club
8am - Flag raising ceremony & presentations
- Citizen of the Year
- Sportsperson of the Year
- Young Achiever of the Year
- Pride in Workmanship
Limited seating so BYO chair
If wet weather will be held in Wingham Town Hall
Enquiries: John Wooldridge - ph: 0401 368 072 - email: johnwooldridgemb@gmail.com

Activities

Australia Day Convoy / Show and Shine - Wingham to Taree
Meet at 9am at Wingham Central Park, ready to leave at 9.30am and drive to Taree Rescue Squad, 28 Muldoon Street, Taree
Anyone with a love for their car, truck or motorbike is welcome to dress up their vehicle and join us.
Followed by a BBQ and a prize for ‘Best Flagged’ vehicle at the Taree Rescue Squad.
Fundraising on the day is in support of Taree Rescue Squad and Aussie Helpers Ltd.
Donations to Aussie Helpers Ltd for farmers in need are most welcome.
Enquiries: Trevor Smurthwaite - ph: 0435 601 433