CHRISTMAS IN JULY AT BALLARA HOMESTEAD, ELTHAM
We had a great Christmas in July at Ballara Homestead. This year the three Probus Clubs that meet at the Baptist Church in Donvale joined in the Christmas celebrations together - Donvale Central (41), Donvale Tunstall (17) and Donvale Hill (30).
'FUN, FRIENDSHIP AND FELLOWSHIP' was enjoyed by the members of the three clubs.
Following the success of the three clubs joining together we may combine for future excursions.
The menu included a two course meal consisting of a roast with 3 meats and vegetables. This was followed by Christmas pudding or apple strudel.
A big thank you to our Outings Committee for their organisation of this event and to the staff at Ballara who made us so welcome.
Probus Spring Barbecue
SUE'S WALK REPORT:
We had 11 walkers plus 1 "Cafe for coffee" attendee join in for the Gardiners Creek walk in Burwood. Once again chilly but fine with a little bit of mud along the trail, but a very pretty walk. We headed for "Bells & Whistles Cafe" halfway in Highbury Road, where we were warmly welcomed. Jack, who was not walking dropped Lucy off at the starting point and was going to meet us for coffee. He asked "Cafe in Highbury Road?". I said yes and Lucy said "Bells & Whistles", we arrived at the Cafe - "Where are you Jack??" He didn't have a phone so Lucy couldn't contact him. There is another cafe along the way called "Aya" so assumed he's gone there by mistake and we'd see him on the way back. No - Jack had gone to a cafe in Highbury Road, just not the same one we were at. Sorry Jack.
Also, along the track we pass the site where the first Burwood Drive-In Cinema was, and Dennis, one of our new members mentioned that he and Noeline had their first date there going to see "Born Free" which Dennis remembered. He said "I bet Noeline won't remember". Asking Noeline what they saw she said "something about lions". She did remember.
Adding to our story of our creeks : "Gardiners Creek was originally known as Kooyongkoot Creek from the Woiwurrung language and translates to "haunt of the waterfowl". It runs for 30 kms in the eastern suburbs and is part of the Yarra catchment. The creek's current name was given in honour of early Melbourne land speculator and banker, John Gardiner who settled near the junction of Kooyongkoot Creek and the Yarra River in 1836. One of the photos is an 1885 painting by John Roberts "Water morning after the rain", Gardiner's Creek".
"Water morning after rain" - Tom Roberts
SUE'S WALK REPORT:
The weather report for our walk on the 26th July was "12 degrees, wind, rain and the chance of hail". I was in doubt that we would get the walk in. But, 8 brave members gave it a shot and all we had to cope with was the cold. This walk was from Napier Park (always hard to find) to Jells Park and, sorry guys, I understand the distance for this walk, seems it was closer to 7.5 km. Poor Jack had to contend with blisters on his heel, not fun, but nurse Lyn came to the rescue with a bandaid which helped a bit. We had our 'cuppa' half way at Madeline's Cafe. The inside Cafe closed Mondays and Tuesdays but the Kiosk with outside seating was available with pretty good service. This is a very pretty area with lots of bird life and a few bulls and cows grazing happily in the paddocks along the way. I noticed the wattle trees coming out which is a good sign of Spring - yah!!
Our next walk is on Thursday, 11th August following part of Blind Creek Trail, Wantirna South. This walk has options to shorten if we like. I look forward to seeing you join in. Here's hoping the weather stays fine.
A short history of Jells Park & Lake. It is a beautiful man-made lake with variable water levels that flow from the Dandenong Creek. No boating or canoeing allowed, but you can fish from two of the jetties for redfin or short-finned eels and yabbies (with a valid fishing licence). Jells Park was named after one of the first pioneer settlers in the area, Joseph Jell, with the area being used for grazing, a piggery and even a storage area for the American Army during World War 2. Prior to the European settlement, Aborigines from the Woiworung and Bunurong tribes lived on the land for over 30,000 years. The Park was offically opened in April 1976 and now caters for over 900,000 visitors a year with over 9 km of paths and trails, and 127 hectares of wide open space and picnic areas.
PORT OF MELBOURNE BUS TOUR:
On Wednesday August 3rd about 27 Donvale Central Probians joined members from Donvale Hill and Donvale Tunstall to form a busload bound for the Port of Melbourne. Prior to arrival there we stopped at the nearby suburb of Garden City to have the obligatory cuppa on the delightful, if windy,waterfront. This part of Melbourne was to many of us an unknown hidden gem.
Our Port tour began with a comprehensive presentation with video and slides covering a vast amount of information which we have all retained - well at least the fact that 44.7% of imports came from CHINA.
We then were back on the bus to drive through much of the vast (about 500 hectares) Port area, which at the Footscray Rd. end gave us a view of the under construction port rail terminus.
Then onto our lunch at The Elgin in Hawthorn.
I'm sure many will follow the suggestion to take the Port Boat Tour when it resumes later this year.
Thanks to Lyn and Chas for their efforts.
It was a great day.
We are missing our Amblers!! The weather was fine, the venue, Finns Reserve, was great and two amblers, Ros and myself had a lovely morning. As, like the song, there was only "The Two of us', we extended what was to be an amble into more of a walk, having our "cuppa" at a coffee shop along the way. We also had a wander around Wombat Bend playground - see the photo of one of those "funny" mirrors. It made us look very slim!! We know a few of you are away or on the sick list, but do think about joining in for what is always a relaxed and pleasant morning.
Our next Amble is Friday, 2nd September at Ringwood Lake and we hope to see you there.
Here is a story about Finn's Reserve: "James Finn, part of one of the original Irish pioneering families, came from Ireland penniless in 1860 and took up work as a Coachman with the Catholic Church in Heidleberg. In 1866 he started up a beer shop on this site which he called "The Happy Home". In 1871 he added six extra rooms onto the original dwelling and was granted a licence in 1872. He called the establishment Finn's Upper Yarra Hotel. Finn's Hotel and a later challenger, The Templestowe Hotel, which still operates, also acted as community centres, at which public meetings were held and marriages celebrated. Despite the battle for business between the two hotels, James Finn married the Templestowe Hotel's Hannah Sheahan, which did nothing to improve the harmony between the two families. Their first son Jim (father of Ned Finn the last owner) was born in 1869.
This information was taken from a plaque at Finn Reserve.
SUE'S WALK REPORT:
We had 9 keen walkers joining for the Blind Creek Trail in Wantirna on the 12th August. It was meant to rain, but that atayed away until we were on our way home. Lucky!! The wind was very gusty and cold though. Not to worry, we were rugged up and prepared. We had our "cuppa" at Coffee on Sherwood"and a good chat near the end. (check the photos where we did get to walk over "very large" stepping stones) Great spot for a photo shoot and,nobody fell in!!!
Along the way we passed Knox Lake (affectionally named by the many locals) who value this large deep-water body. This information came from the website trying to save the lake.
"Acting for the State Government, "Development Victoria" intends to fill in Lake Knox for a new bland canvas on which to meet stormwater requirements so that they can build medium density housing developments on the site. The Development Victoria proposal would disturb and destroy the home of some endangered species, one being the Blue Billed Duck, for the mighty dollar once again."
I reckon the people that would buy from the new proposed estate would love to have a very beautiful lake in their back yard. (sounds like I should be running for Parliament, doesn't it).
Also, the Blind Creek Trail is 11.5 kms long (we didn't walk that far) and runs from the Dandenong Creek Trail in Wantirna South to the Ringwood-Belgrave Rail Trail in Boronia. Blind Creek was reportedly named as it was so over-arched with vegetation that it could not be seen from high vantage points, such as One Tree Hill.
Our next walk is Tuesday 23rd August at Eltham and I look forward to seeing you there.
SUE'S WALK REPORT:
I would like to thank Ros for leading our walkers up the "garden path" for the Eltham Park walk on 23rd August. Four walkers joined in, with many missing, including your "illustrious leader" for various reasons. I hope we can all be back on deck for our next walk on the 8th September starting at Heathmont, heading to Bayswater, coffee halfway. I hope to see you there.
There were no photos to add to this walk, but with Father's Day coming up on the 4th September, here are a few sayings from the little book "DON'TS FOR HUSBANDS" from 1913.
"DON"T stoop, even if your work is desk-work. Your wife wants to see you straight and broad-chested."
"DON'T slouch. No one who cares for a man likes to see him acquire a slouching habit."
"DON'T be too grave and solemn. Raise a bit of fun in the home now and then."
"DON"T keep all your best jokes for your men friends. Let your wife share them."
And finally - "DON'T look at things solely from a man's point of view. Pur yourself in your wife's place and see how you would like some of the things she has to put up with".
Aren't you fellows happy you were born in the 1940's!! Wishing all our Dad's a very happy Fathers Day.
AMBLER'S REPORT (Ros and Sue)
Once again, like the song 'The Two of Us' " We'll go it alone, There's just the two of us, and we'll always be travelling on".
So, once again, Ros and I turned the Amble into a bit of a walk, and did have a lovely morning wandering around Ringwood Lake with a bit of a venture out into the streets of Ringwood before heading back and having our "cuppa" not in the Park but at a lovely coffee shop. (Our walkers will have the opportunity to do this walk in November, I used today as a practice run.)
The weather was a bit chilly to start, but soon jackets came off and we warmed up, then umbrellas came out and it rained for a wee bit. Then the sun came out -'Spring is here"
Our next Amble is Belmore Rd Wetlands area, 4th October. Ros maybe away then, but Sue will be there, and hoping to see a few more Amblers join in.
TRAMBOAT MARIBYRNONG RIVER CRUISE
On a mild early Spring morning, nineteen members of Donvale Central along with eleven members of two other Donvale Probus Clubs boarded the Melbourne Tramboat for a four-hour trip down the Yarra and then up the Maribyrnong River to Essendon and return. Along the way, we were well cared for by husband/wife team of Anthony and Lisa, with Anthony providing commentary as well as steering the boat, and Lisa looking after refreshments.
We passed Coode Island, Flemington Racecourse, some magnificent riverside homes and apartments along Fisher Parade, and the intriguing Chinese Heavenly Queen Temple before arriving at the Anglers Tavern in Essendon for an enjoyable lunch.
Then we boarded the tramboat once again, passing numerous rowing sheds, fishermen and walking tracks along the edge of the river as we headed back to the city. A very interesting day in an area with which few of us were familiar.
SUE'S WALK REPORT:
We had 7 members in for the Dandenong Creek Trail, Heathmont to Bayswater walk. This is a pretty walk, the weather was good, so a lovely morning was had by all. We had our "cuppa" halfway at "Cafe on the Park" which is attached to Glen Park Community Centre. Service was a bit slow, but very eager and easy to please
The above photo of the group was around the monument is one of Hubert "Oppy" Opperman, famous Aussie cyclist in 1920/30's whose cycling feats earned him international fame"
Our next walk is on the 27th Sept (School Hols) walking along part of the Koonung Creek area in Doncaster and I look forward to seeing you join in.
Following on my stories of the Creeks, Here's a bit about the Dandenong Creek.
"The Dandenong Creek (Aboriginal Bunwurrung: Yarra Narrowong or Dandinnong) is an urban Creek of the Port Phillip catchment located in the eastern and south eastern Greater Melbourne region. The creek descends approximately 1,800 feet (whatever that means) over its course of 53 Kms before joining the Eumemmerring Creek to form the Patterson River and eventually draining into the Beaumaris Bay. The first European to see the creek near its source was in 1839 and is believed to be Daniel Bunch, a botanist. The name is derived from an Aboriginal word meaning "lofty mountains". The creek provided water and food for the Boon Warring People of the Kulin nation, and its Eucalypt trees were used to make tools, weapons and canoes, as well as bags and nets. Gum was often applied to ease toothache. The man made Patterson River was constructed in 1878 to provide drainage for swamplands."