Spirit alive and well

GUEST. Australia Day Ambassador, Ann Peacock, right, with Gannawarra Shire representative, Cr Brian Gibson.AUSTRALIANS have been encouraged to remain determined to preserve our way of life in the wake of terrorist incidents.

“We must not become overwhelmed by fear,” Australia Day ambassador, Ann Peacock said.

Ms Peacock, the corporate and public relations general manager at Crown Resorts, said that her years as an ambassador had given her the opportunity to explore first-hand “my own back yard” across Victoria.

She told the Kerang gathering that not only does Victoria have a diverse geography, it has a diversity of communities, with the original inhabitants sharing pride in 40,000 years of settlement through to the exploration of the Kerang area by Major Thomas Mitchell in 1836 and the first settlers here from 1848.

“Since then, people from other lands have come and you have been living and working together ever since to make Kerang what it is today,” she said.

Ms Peacock said that was days like Australia Day when people reflected on home, our own and our community.

“Reflecting on our blessings must not just be nostalgic, but inspirational,” she said.

“We are still the lucky country and the Australian spirit shines through and our resilience shows when we can smile when things get tough.”

More than 200 people started Australia Day in the park with a hearty breakfast, prepared and cooked by the Rotary Club of Kerang.

After their appetites were satisfied, the Lions Club of Kerang conducted formal proceedings to celebrate our heritage.

Gannawarra Senior Citizen of the Year, veteran Scouting leader, Carmel Tyers was the toast of “my children” – her Cub Scout group – and the Kerang Historical Society was lauded for preserving our local heritage.

Cr Brian Gibson said that a total of 19 nominations for local awards was testimony to the depth of community involvement.

Taskforce staff led the flag-raising and students Carmen Baulch and Maddison Makeham sung the national anthem.

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