What a fantastic time 36 of us enjoyed down at the Hunter Valley Gardens Christmas Lights Spectacular. We left Taree on Wednesday morning after a cuppa, then enjoyed a picnic lunch by the River at Karuah where we were able to stretch our legs. After lunch we travelled to Kurri Kurri, where the ladies had a fantastic time rummaging through the Millers Factory Outlet Shop, whilst the men paced the footpath outside! Off to Harrigans Hotel at Pokolbin to check in for our two night stay, a short rest and a well deserved cuppa. Then we climbed back into the buses to head to the Hunter Valley Gardens for our Christmas themed dinner, followed by a walk through glorious the Christmas lights display which literally took our breath away. A fantastic day, enjoyed by every single person.
Day 2 saw us be spoilt with a beautiful buffet breakfast, after which we headed back to the Hunter Valley Gardens to take in the daytime sights of the perfectly manicured and cared for gardens. A train ride ensured we saw pretty much all of the garden area, followed by a nice cuppa and a browse through the village shop. A must visit to the Fudge Factory at Pokolbin followed, where many sweets were purchased! Lunch was enjoyed at Cessnock Hotel, and the afternoon consisted of a visit to De Bortoli Vineyards , as well as the village shops back at the Hunter Valley Gardens. After a rest in the afternoon, we were all treated to a scrumptious BBQ dinner back at Harrigans.
Day 3 saw us dragging our feet a little bit more, after our initial two busy days. It didn’t stop us enjoying that delicious buffet breakfast again though, followed by packing up our goodies and checking out of our accommodation. A visit to McGuigans Winery & Cheese Shop was the first stop, and then a relaxing drive through the Hunter to see the new estates being developed. Our final destination was lunch at Peterson’s Champagne House, where clients were given a lovely glass of champagne, followed by a delicious meal after which our 4 buses poked their noses north and headed for the home straight.
A thoroughly enjoyable time away, a magical time together creating precious memories…
On Tuesday last week our Social Support outing took us to beautiful Comboyne. This has become a very popular outing, so much so, we had to hire a third bus and we booked the Café out. We first stopped at Yippin Creek Picnic Area, where the miniature trains run once a month – we were not in luck this time even though some of our group would have loved to see the trains!
Our journey continued up to the Comboyne Plateau, the marvelous weather allowed us to admire the view as we climbed. The Udder Cow Café once again served up great home cooked meals and there was enough time after lunch to explore the store across the road before heading home. We have put this outing back on again for November and already we have a waiting list for it.
Earlier this year the Taree Community Connect Committee donated over $23,000 to “Make a Difference” (M.A.D.) in order to purchase an Orange Sky Laundry Van. The van is now a regular visitor to the Taree Uniting Church grounds where it is parked every Friday from 10am – 12pm providing people experiencing hardship in our local community a free washing service. The service is run by volunteers providing resources, referrals and someone to talk to.
For anyone interested in volunteering for this worthwhile service, contact Orange Sky Laundry directly by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 07 3062 4811. Alternatively MSS’ Volunteer Recruitment Facilitator, Lisa Stevens, can be reached on 6551 1800 to refer volunteers to the local Orange Sky Laundry Team.
Another month of pleasurable days out and about in the local area. Great Lakes Winery is always a favourite, where wine and cheese tasting was had before we enjoyed a tantalizing BBQ for lunch.
A day spent at Billabong Koala Park was another treat, clients were entertained by “Shrek” the Crocodile, baby meerkats, kangaroos and koalas, and many other creatures.
Other venues we have visited over the last few weeks include Taree Races for the Krambach Cup; Movies at Laurieton; Bonny Hills Nursery; Day trip to Gloucester; Manning Point Bowling Club and Moorland Cottage. Our regular Café days have continued to be popular, whether it be for music, craft or a movie. Always guaranteed good company, fun times, and a laugh!
We are fortunate to be able to offer the “Stepping On” program for our clients, with the assistance of Hunter New England Health. 13 of our elderly ladies are attending this 10 week program, which will assist with balance, confidence and falls prevention.
The Annual General Meeting for Manning Support Services Inc. (MSS) was held on Thursday 12th October 2017 at Club Taree.
Our newly elected Board members are Michael Burgess (President), Paul Lewers (Vice President), Ian Dyball (Treasurer), Jillian Dunn, Ken Loftus, Judith Richardson, Mave Richardson, Will Paulson, Michelle Wilkes, Emma Pike and Denise Greenaway.
We thank Richard Johnson and Matthew Heathcote for their dedication and service as members on our Board of directors.
Dr David Gillespie MP and Ms Katheryn Smith, Deputy Mayor for Midcoast Council were present during the proceedings and contributed to the day with a speech and by presenting long service awards to the following recipients:
Peter Quinn – 20 years
Cathy Baker – 5 years
Kristy Byrnes – 5years
Michael Burgess – 10 years
Jillian Dunn – 5 years
Ian Dyball – Treasurer’s Certificate of Appreciation from the Not for Profit Finance Week
Nancy Standford – 15 years
Rosemary Probst – 15 years
Jenny Elcoate – 15 years
Lorraine Perrin – 10 years
Maire Barrett – 5 years
May Cullen – 5 years
Robert Curtis – 5 years
Helen Heathwood – 5 years
Peter Lindwall – 5 years
Helen McDonald – 5 years
Barbara Moore – 5 years
Students from Taree West Public School provided excellent drumming entertainment to showcase their skills acquired in the DRUMBEAT program with Family Workers Luke Anderson and Renae Taylor. Their performance was so well received that they were asked to do some extra drumming with a handful of enthusiastic members of the crowd!
Everyone enjoyed a wonderful day with delicious food, great entertainment, fantastic raffle prizes and trivia fun. A special thanks to George Hoad for his emceeing.