Opinion

Volunteers are a credit to our success with events

By Deniliquin Pastoral Times

When it comes to organising events, Deniliquin punches well above our weight.

This has again been reflected in past weeks with the fishing classic and the Deniliquin Show.

Both events were successful in their own right, and both make a significant contribution to the local economy.

The fishing classic broke the 1500 barrier for registrations as anglers took to the Edward River in droves to catch a fish and win one of the many valuable prizes.

Although show numbers were slightly down, perhaps due to the heat, many people still took the opportunity to go along and enjoy the vast range of activities on offer.

As usual the pavilion was popular, as was sideshow alley. But there were many other activities to keep the crowd entertained and the show society must be congratulated for organising another action-packed weekend.

In difficult times many country shows have fallen by the wayside, and it is a credit to the hard-working local committee which keeps coming up with interesting entertainment to complement the regular features, year in and year out.

Let’s hope our show, unlike others, can keep progressing for many years into the future. We partiicularly look forward to next year’s 140th anniversary show.

It goes without saying that the classic and show, like every other event, require a significant amount of volunteer effort, and without the dedication of community members they would cease to exist.

In some parts of our nation the act of volunteerism appears to be a dying art. That is not the case in Deniliquin and district; may it always be so.

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If you make a mistake it is important that it be honestly acknowledged so you can move on. We think this may be sage advice for Member for Murray Austin Evans.

Mr Evans infamously told two respected Deniliquin community members that “I don’t need Deniliquin” to retain his seat at the election. When originally asked about his comment Mr Evans said he had been “dramatically misquoted”, then clarified this by saying he “highlighted that you don’t need to win all Deni booths to be elected”.

Local health advocate Shirlee Burge said she would “go to court” to defend her recollection of what was said.

Last week at a candidates’ forum in Griffith, this issue was raised and Mr Evans defended his actions by stating he was “misquoted” by the Pastoral Times and “I did not say those words”.

We accept his explanation that he meant the comment in the context that he does not need to win all Deniliquin booths to be elected. We totally refute the suggestion he was misquoted and will continue to stand by the validity of our report.

We also believe Mr Evans would be better served by taking proactive steps to represent the Deniliquin region and achieve worthwhile outcomes for our community, especially in regard to water policy and health. He hasn’t kicked too many goals in either area to this point, and only has a few weeks for this to be rectified.