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On a glorious warm October morning, nineteen members of Donvale Central Probus Club visited the Melbourne Botannical Gardens for a 90 minute tour. Splitting up into three smaller groups, guides walked two groups around the gardens explaining the significance of many of the unique and unusual trees and other plants, while the third group travelled in a small mobile vehicle to reduce the amount of walking.  We were also given an insight into the history and development of the Gardens, including an explanation of the re-routing of the Yarra many years ago, and the important role of the first Director of the Grdens in the mid-1800's Baron von Mueller.  



THE CACTUS GARDEN:  "These fantastic plants demonstrate the adaptive traits that plants have evolved to survive and indeed thrive in water scarcity." Royal Botantic Gardens, Victoria


We had 10 join in for the Jells Park walk on Tuesday, 24th October.  The weather report was sounding - not too bad- warm and windy and we definitely had the wind.  It did look like rain at first, so a few brollies, just in case, and as we know that always keeps the rain away.  The park is looking very green and very pretty, while the lake is rife with bird life!  There would be 100's of white Ibis on the island in the lake with many and varied types of ducks and other water birds. (You will see in one of the photos, we were in a bird hide trying to see "What bird is that?"  Our group broke up as we neared the track around the lake, some doing the shorter version by the front of the lake, heading to the cafe, while others headed off along the track taking us around the lake before heading to the cafe where our 'early birds" had set up a table ready for us.  Thanks guys!

The main part of the Cafe is closed Monday's and Tuesday's doing a kiosk service with outdoor seating.  the service was prompt, the coffee was great and the company was fantastic.

Our next walk is 9th November (don't tell me Christmas is nearly here!) meeting bottom end of Abbey walk (continuation of Heatherdale Rd), having our cuppa after at Mr Fox Cafe at Ringwood Public Golf course after.  I look forward to seeing you there.

Sue's saying for the day: "Do you know how helpless you feel if you have a full cup of coffee  - or tea - in your hand and you start to sneeze?"  This does happen to me in the mornings.  Brian brings me a cup of tea in bed - very nice - and I quite often need to sneeze, hence, a bit of tea down the front of my PJs.  I always try to protect the doona cover!!


We had 12 enthusiastic players attend Crazy Whist, including Kaye and Johanna who were pleased to be able to attend an afternoon session.  We also welcomed Rosemary to her first game.  The theme was Halloween and we were tricked and treated throughout the afternoon.  Ourrbig winner was Mary and just to keep it in the family, our tailended was Geoff.  Rosemary settled in well and came a close second to Mary.

Our last game for the year is Thursday, 30th November, 1pm -3pm, so join in if you can.



The meeting was held at Glenda's home with Glenda as Hostess and Lorelle as Convener.

Book discussed: "Oh William" by Elisabeth Strout.

"Oh William," was not a book that everyone enjoyed but a good discussion was conducted by all members present.  A very different writing style than our last book but one that made us think about the characters long after we had finished the book.

The 'Enjoyment' score for the book by the members present was 34/60.

Our next book to be read and discussed chosen by Glenda is "The Sweet Remnants of Summer" by Alexander McCall Smith.

Next meeting will be held on 23/01/2024 .  Lorna will be the host and Glenda will be the convenor.

Our next "Official" Meeting is not until January, we decided  it would be nice to meet and have an afternoon tea to celebrate Christmas.




On Friday 3rd November, our team of five lovely ladies wandered around the delightful Halliday Park, before settling in for our cuppa, bikkies and a chat.  The attached photos  show us (always one behind the camera) beneath one of the most magnificant Oak trees in this park. They were planted in 1938. I wished we looked that good at that age.

With Remembrance Day coming up, we took a photo near the fence along Mitcham Road which is lined with beautiful leather type poppies.  Another photo shows the War Memorial, which is a very pretty area.

This is our last amble at Halliday Park for 2023, our final one being on Friday, 1st december at Maranoa Gardens in Balwyn, followed by a lovely lunch put on by Maureen at "Chez Maureen's" village.  We look forward to you joining in. This is really a very enjoyable outing, so do think about it.

"Everywhere is within walking distance if you have the time".

We have time on our ambles, so, see you there,



Combined outing - Donvale Hill and Donvale Central


Cup Day was enjoyed by all members who attended.  Our Club ran 3 sweeps which included both clubs. We had one Cup winner and the other winners were from Hills.  The two clubs mixed, the food was delicious and so were the "drinks".



We had a very pleasant morning on Thursday, 9th November,where 7 joined in for our Dandenong  Creek, Ringwood walk. This is a very pretty,flat walk, following along the delightful Dandenong Creek.  After our walk we drove a short distance to the Mr Fox Cafe located at Ringwood Public Golf Course.  It was quite noisy, but nice with friendly staff and good coffee.  A nice surprise was meeting one of our members,Lorraine, who was meeting a friend for lunch.  She took some photos for us. Thanks Lorraine, hope you enjoyed your lunch.

One of the attached photos I took shows the variety of different milks you had the choice of. I remember when I was a kid, milk came from cows.

The Dandenong Creek runs for 44km's,  starting in the Dandenong Ranges, making its way through the city of Dandenong, joining the Patterson River and flowing into Port Phillip Bay.  The traditional custodians, The Bunuroinf people referred to the creek as Narra Narrawong, while others gave the creek the name Dandenong, sometimes spelled as Dand-y-don or Tanjenong by early setters, believed to mean "high and Lofty" from the Aboriginal language. (Wikipedia)

Our next walk is from Petty's orchard following along the Mullum Mullum Creek, having our cuppa at the Orchard's cafe at the end.  I look forward to seeing you join in.  This will be our penultimate walk for the year - scary!


 A group from Donvale Central met in the city to do the guided historical tour of 'The State Library of Victoria' which was established in 1854 and is the oldest and one of the largest free libraries in Australia. The most notable feature of the library is its architectual beauty. Our guide explained to us the various architectual changes that were made in the later renovations of the library.  The domed reading room bought back memories for some members that had studied at Melbourne University - this is where in our Uni days we spent many hours researching for assignments etc.

The library has in its collection over two million books, 25,000 maps, thousands of manuscripts and many digitial resources.

Am sure many of us will return to the library to visit the Art Gallery, exhibitions, and just enjoy being immersed in 'Books'.

After the tour some of us joined together to have lunch in the cafe. This was a most enjoyable outing.



The weather was chilly but the hardy members who turned up for our barbecue all joined in and contributed to the fun and laughter that we always enjoy at a Probus gathering.  We had one lonely barbecuer and the rest of us enjoyed the wine, sandwiches and nibbles on offer.

Attending the barbecues are a great way to get to know your fellow members -



Spring weather can present us with anything, and on Friday the heavens awaited until we were about to get going with our lawn bowls and the clouds overflowed.  The rain was pelting down and we had to make a dash for the Donvale Bowls Club rooms which were warm and inviting.  After some social chit chat the table groups became competitive with some different, interesting trivia questions.  The winning tables were presented with little packets of Smarties which definitely went to our heads as our table just went downhill after our big initial win.

The BBQ dinner, prepared by the members of the club, was delicious and there was plenty of left overs for seconds. The yummy desserts were even better than the last time we were at the Club. 

Even though we missed out on the Lawn Bowls, everyone agreed that the trivia presented by Malcolm and the BBQ dinner made it a good night for all who attended,  We finished the evening with lucky number prizes, and many lucky quests went home with prizes.

Many thanks to Carol and the Donvale Bowls Club for all the work they put into the evening.  We are determined to get out on the green the next time we head down there.




                                                   Hang up the stockings - It will soon be Christmas

Last Saturday approx. 20 members enjoyed having "Coffee with Probus Friends" at the Pines Shopping Centre. It was the Christmas Parade so we all joined in welcoming Christmas at "The Pines".


It was a good afternoon to settle down to a couple of hours of social cards in the comfortable surroundings of the playroom at the Church. We had 12 players stretching their brains to play the crazy rules for our Crazy Whist games today, some big scores were won or lost with each hand.  Our eventual winner was President Jeff with a great score of 88, and Ros kept the prizes in the family by coming in as our Tail-ender with a score of 65. We look forward to more games next year, some played in the evening and some during the daytime, as the different time doesn't suit all of our regular players.



Our Petty's Orchard walk on 28th November turned out to be the Warrandyte Riverside walk, which 10 folk enjoyed.  I had Petty's Orchard written up and in concrete for some time, originally it was going to be our last walk 14th December.  Early on the 27th I woke up saying to myself, "You have a walk tomorrow Sue and it is meeting at Petty's Orchard and Petty's Orchard is not open on a Tuesday!"  I knew that!!! Somewhere along the way I just decided to swap it over.  So after a few messages and phone calls, we all met at the Goldfields Shopping Centre in Warrandyte and had a lovey walk alongside our beautiful Yarra River, finishing back at the shopping centre having our cuppa and chat at Scrumiddily Cafe.  A nice morning was had by all.

Along the way I managed to get a photo of "Donald" and and fast flowing Yarra (see attached photo).  Some nice group photos too, rest time and coffee time.  Our next and last walk for the year is on 14th December meeting at Eltham Leisure Centre, Brougham St, Eltham.  Mel 21 H7

"Coffee and Friends make the Perfect Blend", which is what we get after our walks.  Do come along.


We had 10 lovely ladies join in for our last amble for 2023. "Jane" told us it was mean't to be intermitten showers all morning but the weather was perfect and, as usual, Maranoa gardens were lovely as we meandered along the paths and in and out of the greenery.  We came across a very large blue tongue lizard, carved out of wood fortunately.

After our ambling we made our way back to Maureen's where,as always, we were presented with plates of yummy sandwiches, some tasty sausage rolls and mini quiches, washed down withe some champagne and or fruit juice, to be followed by some lovely cakes and a cuppa, including some cake for our BIRTHDAY GIRL, Lyn.  Happy Birthday Lyn, we hope you had a lovely day.

We would like to thank Maureen for the effort she puts in organising this delightful lunch for us, and to the Manager of her Village, Peter, who is a great help in setting up things for us.  We amblers always look forward to this now annual event,.


"I eat cake because it's somebody's birthday somewhere, and you can see above, it was Lyn's birthday." 

And for the Amblers: "You are free to amble the world.  Slower your pace, life isn't a race."  And that's exactly what we do with our Ambles.  See you next year.

Ros and Sue would like to wish all our Probus friends a very happy & safe Christmas and holiday time and we look forward to ambling with you in 2024.

        HO! HO! HO!

 "What a great day for our Christmas lunch at the Box         Hill Golf Club"

We started the day with a complimentary drink for all attendees, the noise level rose with everyone socialising.  Santa arrived ringing the bell and many HO,HO,HO'S.


You could tell Santa thoroughly enjoyed the hugs and kisses he received as he handed out the 41 door prizes of hampers to the winners.  The room looked very festive with the individual wrapped presents on the table settings and the hampers. The meal and friendship in the room made it a very Merry Christmas lunch.



      BOX HILL RSL                        BOX HILL GOLF CLUB - 2010           BOX HILL GOLF CLUB - 2012


We had 9 join in for our last walk for the year on Thursday, 14th December, meeting near the Eltham Leisure Centre (which seems a big concern!) We did a loop of the Eltham Trail, finishing at Second Home for our cuppa.  I had booked us in for 10.30 am, they had us in for 8.30am.  A bit too early I think.  I'm just waking up then!! It all worked out in the end and a nice morning was had by all.  Weather was cooler, still a bit muggy, but OK for our final walk.

As you can see from some of the attached photos, most of us were allowed out, but for some reason, Dennis was kept locked up!

Our next walk is Thursday, 8th February, 2024, starting in Donvale and walking to Beasleys for our cuppa halfway.  I look forward to seeing you there.  I would like to thank all our walkers who have joined in the walks this year; It's a job I really enjoy and get a lot of pleasure out of doing.

And remember: "An apple a day isn't the only thing that can keep the Doctor away. Walking does too!"


See you next year!!




January 31st:   New Years Eve Party

January 13th:   Morning Coffee at The Pines

January 16th:   Probus Picnic at Ruffey Lake

Please check Newsletter for other Probus activities beginning in January

           NEW YEAR'S EVE - 2023-24

                                 Photos - Herald Sun - Victoria

A group of oldies (Probus members) gathered at Bernice's home to celebrate the end of 2023 and the beginning of a New Year.

Some of us shared memories of the early years of Probus - the fun we had on 'David's Days' when we were fit enough to board the tram to St Kilda, take a walk along the St Kilda Pier and then enjoy fish and chips at Rex Hunt's Fish and Chip shop and the Mystery Bus Tour to the Buddhist Temple ( we couldn't remember where it actually was)  Oh, to be younger again without those worrying aches and pains and short term memory loss.

However even oldies can have fun being with our fellow Probians while enjoying New Year's Cheer.

Thank you Bernice for allowing us into your home. It was a fun night of "Fun, Fellowship and Friendship".

REMINDER:   Probus Picnic January 16th

Forward to Club History


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