THE Nelson Bay Australia Day Committee hosted yet another fantastic Australia Day celebration at Fly Point Nelson Bay last week.
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The committee are no strangers to planning the event, with this year seeing the almost unchanged group planning and hosting their twenty-first Australia Day celebration.
The day started with a well patronised parade through town led by the Hunter School of Performing Arts Band and finishing at the park at 9:30.
Doug Cross, Chairman of the Nelson Bay Australia Day Committee told News Of The Area, “We immediately had about 2000 people in the park at 9:30 and it grew all day.”
The Band providing live music on Australia Day in Nelson Bay was The Years, a popular and talented band from Newcastle.
They were received well by the crowd, and had everyone tapping their feet, enjoying the music.
The Robyn Yvette Dancers performed a number of dance on the stage.
This dance school has supported Australia Day in Nelson Bay for over 15 years and this year, having performed at Disney World and as a headline act on a cruise liner, again produced a very entertaining Grand Finale to the day.
Dale Shearman was again a great entertainer for those attending to watch his shearing demonstrations on both sheep and a Llama.
The free Pony Rides for the children were very popular, as were the free jumping castles, making sure that all the children participating would have a good night’s sleep at the end of a busy, fun day.
Mike Ryan from the Nelson Bay Australia Day Committee told News Of The Area, “The day doesn’t happen without the dozens of volunteers from so many organisations, not just the Australia Day Committee.”
“The Rotary Clubs of Nelson Bay and Salamander Bay work hard to keep everyone fed, and the Action Club were there with the dentist’s favourite, Fairy Floss.”
“The Nelson Bay Freemasons had Ice cups to help you keep cool but also organised the markets (almost 100 stalls this year) and the car parking,” he said.
The emergency services – Fire, Police, and Ambulance were all there both helping and on display for the day, as were Marine Rescue, who were present with a display before taking a call for help a long way offshore in the afternoon.
The RAAF Cadets did a splendid job with the presentation and Raising of the Flag at noon.
The Nelson Bay Car Club had a great display of Classic Cars, some more classic than others, the 1927 Rugby always being popular
Mike added, “Max Mackinnon has been a long time supporter with his 1929 Marquette motor car, which is now an extremely rare vehicle, and especially one as lovingly restored as Max’s car.”
“The sail past in the morning is always a show stopper and somewhat more sedate than the RAAF flyover in the afternoon.”
“Three RAAF FA18 Hornets flew over at about 500 feet before performing a manoeuvre called a “Bomburst”, which was spectacular and noisy,” he said.
Doug Cross, Chairman of the Nelson Bay Australia Day Committee said, “There were many hundreds of small children there enjoying the many free activities such as pony rides and jumping castles.”
“We are so impressed that so many people came out to celebrate on such a hot day, and celebrated our beautiful area.”
“I have reports that the snow cone stand alone went through over 800 snow ice cones keeping everyone cool.”
“By all accounts the day was a huge success and our committee is grateful for the support of our prime sponsor Port Stephens Council and Marquis Bathroom Products without which we would not be able to provide these celebrations,” he said,
Doug added, “My enthusiastic and dedicated committee will have a short break and begin planning next years event which we will endeavour to make even more spectacular.”