The community spirit of Canowindra was still strongly felt in town after the success of the Christmas day luncheon. The beginning of 2014 saw Con the Cabbie handing over the taxi to Craig Dreyer. Geoff Yeo got the ribbing of the month with his ‘our bloke’ answer that bringing Jackie breakfast in bed makes his day, you sly fox. Ian Brown proudly displayed one of the regions examples of farming innovation, the Britannia Boiler which is still there in 2015. The Australia Day Awards saw sisters Beck and Taneil Thornberry named Youth Ambassador and Young Citizen of the Year respectively while Con claimed Canowindra Citizen of the Year.
The month of love saw the engagement of Amanda Beath and Brodie Friend, who recently welcomed baby Isabella into their lives. Pearl and Jim Brown also celebrated 64 years of marriage and The Falls Retreat opened its doors just in time for Valentine’s Day. After a long dry spell the heavens opened and a welcome 30 mils of rain drenched Canowindra’s dusty streets while Tommy took over the Deli Lama, celebrating in style with a grand opening show.
International Women’s Day was celebrated at the Deli Lama with Jane Atkinson as the guest speaker. Canowindra set the stage for Strangerland, but even stranger was the revelation of Nicole Kidman’s family ties with the town (a distant relative of T.J.Finn!) The new swimming pool was officially opened by Charlie McCarron (whose Uncle opened the original pool 60 years previous) and Kerby Lawrence was appointed Chairperson for the Health Advisory Council.
Downtown Canowindra was star-struck as the film crews rolled in to transform Gaskill Street into dust-blown bush town, Nathgari. The week long shooting of ‘Strangerland’ allowed residents to meet Hugo Weaving and Nicole Kidman, who were seen visiting many of our local businesses, including the pubs! The 44th annual Debutante Ball was also held in which 12 girls adorned in white gowns were welcomed into society as ladies. April began the baby boom with the arrival of Harry to Sare and Clayton Maynard
May was a baby boom month for Canowindra, as Suzie & Adam Nash welcomed Lachlan, Abbey & Sam McRae saw the arrival of Alby, Tracey & Greg Holmes met Emily and Daniel Walker & Bonnie Thurtell said hello to Noah. Canowindra celebrated the success of it’s first ‘international’ status Balloon Challenge, Lisa Cartwright pushed for life saving equipment at the Sports Oval after a dangerous incident at the Swimming Pool, Canowindra C.W.A celebrated its 90th birthday and the Age of Fishes greeted new Manager, Warren Keedle.
The Community Players brought ‘TC & AJ Talent Scouts’, a musical tale of two failing impressionists who try to claw back into showbiz by forming a punk-rock boy band. The Men’s Shed celebrated eight successful years and Annette, Lynette and Kay enjoyed a long awaited catch-up after 57 years apart. Ashlea Codner braved the razor, shaving her hair off to raise $8000 for cancer research whilst Virginia Cullane handed over a $12,000 cheque to Central West Cancer Clinical Trials.
July saw Canowindra schools celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Education Week while Peg and Ron Lynch celebrated their 72nd Anniversary. Arthur Falconer resigned from the Ballooning Committee, but kept on ballooning and Adelaide Ellis did Australia proud in Canada, competing in discus, relay and high jump. Gaskill Street shop windows sparkled with festive cheer for ‘Christmas In July’, Anthony D’Onise’s wine ‘Pig In The House’ made at the Windowrie winery won ‘Organic Wine of the Year’ and Virginia Cullane raised over $15,000 for Central West Cancer Clinical Trials.
Fields of gold surrounded the town as the canola began to bloom on track for a record harvest. Book Week saw the arrival of some strange literary characters including Mario, who looked suspiciously like St Eddie’s Principal, Ken McNamara. Canowindra Preschool welcomed some chirpy new additions and the Showground headed for a big upgrade as it was awarded almost $73,000. Roy White and friends got their engines revved in preparation for Tractor Trek, in aid of Camp Quality.
September saw the High School picking up the pieces after vandals caused thousands of dollars’ worth of damage. The entire community was left reeling after the shocking and tragic death of Chris Noble in Rozelle. Tributes poured in in their hundreds, especially from the sporting teams Chris was involved in. Canowindra officially farewelled Chris on September 13th in a moving service where friends, colleagues and residents joined the Noble family in their grief, pride and love. We all still think of you, and will always miss you. Hooroo.
Ghouls and goblins skulked the streets for Halloween and lanterns lit the night thanks to Colleen Traves, who raised $9000 for Leukaemia Foundation. The Twilight Markets came to town, the shop windows and balconies of Gaskill Street were laced with patch-work quilts and Slogger Green was reunited with his family after 55 years of being lost. Canowindra held its annual 113th Canowindra Show with the Farmer’s Challenge being the highlight and the 2014 Showgirls were sashed.
November was a month of reflection as we remembered our fallen in Memorial Park and paid tribute to Virginia Cullane. It was filled with heat as firefighters battled the flames at Nyrang Creek and Cudal Road and a suspicious act set a house ablaze on Charlotte Street. Health was on the agenda as the Fitness Path became even better and Alison Stephens planned her 250km run to raise money for diabetes research and a range of moustaches were sported by local men for Movember.
An army of Santas watched from our rooftops as the town busied itself for Christmas. A nun-derful show was put on by Tommy Jeffs/ Tallulah to raise over $10,000 for the High School, Canowindra had its first ever Christmas Shopping Night and Moyne car park resonated with festive melodies. December is a month to eat, drink and be merry and we didn’t disappoint as Christmas parties were held all over town and Graduation ceremonies were celebrated by all four of our schools. It’s been a year to remember, we look forward to the next one!