Gerringong to keep its Christmas Parade

Changing of the guard: Emily Vaughan and Luke Richards (second and third from left) are passed the Town Crier Bell by Rotary’s Steve Smith, Sandra McCarthy, Val Cuthbertson and Andrejs Medenis

After 17 years in its care, Gerringong Rotary has passed over responsibility for the annual Christmas Parade to a group of locals, supported by the not-for-profit status of Gerringong Bowlo.

“We are delighted that younger people have come forward,” says Gerringong Rotary President Sandra McCarthy.

“There is a basic foundation and structure there for them to build on with their new energy and ideas.

“It’s great for Gerringong at this time of transition.”

A dozen residents and representatives of the village’s community organisations are on the new committee, which is forging ahead with its preparations, with the help of Rotary’s procedures, checklists and contacts.

“Rotary usually starts planning this in August, so given the really short time frame we have this year we are focusing on simplifying it, and keeping it local,” says the Chair of the committee, Emily Vaughan.

“We haven’t had a lot of time to think about what we would like the parade to look like in the future.

“It is just about doing it well this year to keep the tradition alive.”

With the Club’s support, the new organising committee can fundraise and apply for grants to keep the tradition going.

“We have already secured a grant from Clubs NSW, and will soon be looking for sponsorship from local businesses,” says fellow committee member Luke Richards, who is also the General Manager of the Bowlo.

Gerringong Rotary has donated $500 to the cause.

The committee will be contacting previous local participants to encourage them to join in again.

For the first time, commercial businesses will be charged an entry fee for their floats.

“We have a group of really can do people, who will put their hands up for different elements of the parade – we’ll pull this off,” says Emily.

Details: The Parade is on Saturday 21 December at 10 am, followed by the Rotary Christmas Market. Keep up-to-date by following the Gerringong Christmas Parade facebook page.

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