Sawtell Catholic Care opens The Link at Marion Grove

Community members young and old enjoying The Link, a 3.6 acre garden and community space, featuring a cafe, at the Marion Grove village precinct.

ON Tuesday, October 11, Sawtell Catholic Care hosted the grand opening of ‘The Link’, a large garden and community space within the Marion Grove residential village precinct.

Built upon the reinvigorated former site of Cockbain’s Nursery on Hogbin Drive, The Link, now a part of Marian Grove’s village precinct, affords residents a brand new lifestyle opportunity in their own backyard.

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The 3.6 acre garden offers residents a wonderful, unique outdoor space in which to walk, sit and relax, enjoy a coffee and a light meal at the café in the company of friends and family, or some solitude and reflection time if needed.

The Link is accessible to the broader local community as well, offering a space for gathering and social connection.

The garden will also play host to small functions and events.

Coinciding with Mental Health Week and National Gardening Week (October 10-14), Sawtell Catholic Care
opened the Link gates and invited the community for a week of celebration filled with music, intergenerational art exhibitions, community, and fun.

The official opening ceremony took place on Tuesday, 11 October at 10 am, with Director of Mission and Master of Ceremonies Matt Digges introducing a Welcome to Country by Aunty Jenny Skinner, addresses from Sawtell Catholic Care CEO Michael Darragh and Ambassador for National Gardening Week George Hoad AM, and a blessing by Sawtell Parish Priest Fr Michael Alcock, ably assisted by his dog Zippy.

Cutting the ribbon followed, with support from Sawtell Catholic Care Board Chairman David Robson, Marian Grove resident Frank Kennedy and Coffs Harbour Mayor Paul Amos.

The morning concluded with cultural dances and a smoking ceremony by the Giingan Dancers.

CEO Michael Darragh said, “I want to thank Fr Michael, our Board of Directors and leadership team, who have supported this vision over the past five years, and to also acknowledge the design and construction team that have delivered such an engaging lifestyle space.

“Finally, the dream is delivered, and we look forward to the future.

One we want to share with you.”

The organisation has also announced that The Link Café will be run by fellow not-for-profit organisation the Bularri Muurlay Nyanggan Aboriginal Corporation.

The Link grounds and Café are open to the public Monday to Saturday 8.30am to 3pm.

Sawtell Catholic Care extended thanks to the Coffs Harbour Men’s Shed, Louise and Wendy for their violin music at the cafe, Youngster Co for their tech assistance, The Sawtell Ukulele group the Marian Grove Ukulele Group.

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