Easter 2016 – Wandoan

21st April

We had arranged this trip so that we could attend a gathering at Wandoan organised by the founder of RV Homebase, Peter Shadforth.

Camping was organised at the Juandah Historical Village with 21 RVs attending. The weekend had been planned around the Wandoan Show and Ute Muster and Anzac Day on the 25th.

The members of the Historical Society put on a barbeque for the campers on Thursday evening which was good fun.

On Friday we went out to the Showgrounds but there was not much happening for spectators as judging of entries in the livestock, craft and produce categories was still underway. In the evening there was entertainment at the Showgrounds but we were rather tired so gave that a miss.

Saturday was the day to be there. Judging was complete apart from the ring events and woodchop. I was disappointed that there were no sheepdog trials but that seems to be a dying art these days with mustering done by quad bike and gyrocopters. However we did enjoy the woodchop events – more than the competitors apparently as the wood was extremely hard. The temperature was around 35 degrees Celsius so we did not envy these guys. More than one axe head was damaged and at around $600 each I doubt any prize money would have covered their expenses.

Watch those toes, guys!

There were some weird vehicles on display.

There were fewer entries in the produce section than I would have expected for a country show. This is the winning pumpkin.

Some nice patchwork and quilting.

There were some interesting photographic entries and we puzzled over a few of those that won prizes, thinking some more worthy than others.

Watching the dressage and show jumping.

This was a fine specimen in the poultry judging.

On Sunday morning, the local school band put on a performance while we waited for our camp oven lunch provided by the Historical Society.

Very tasty roast beef and vegies followed by apple crumble and custard. Not bad for $15.

In the afternoons, quite a few campers joined in games of Klop.

25th April Anzac Day

We were being collected by the bus at 5am for the Dawn Service at the Anzac Memorial in town. It was a bit chilly so jeans were the order of the day. I managed to trip over an awning rope in the dark and went crashing to the ground. Fortunately the only damage done was to my pride. We were amazed at the turnout for the Dawn Service. We estimated around 500-600, with about 60% of those being workers from the nearby mine camp. After the service they took off in their vehicles to start work at 6.30am. These guys and girls work 19 days on and 9 days off at the coal seam gas fields.

At 9.45am the march got under way from the main street down to the Community Centre. Everyone was involved from school children to veterans. They even asked us to march which we thought a bit odd as we didn’t think that was allowed.

In the wheelchair is the last surviving Anzac from Wandoan.

Following the march was the service in the community hall.

This memorial stone is at the rear of the Community Centre and was created by local school children.

After the service, Peter organised the bus to take a number of us on a tour of the mine workers’ village, Wandoan Windmill Village, that he has built just out of town. It was fascinating seeing the amazing facilities provided for the workers.

This is the outdoor area with huge tv screen and fire pit. There is also a tavern built in a restored Queenslander, fully equipped gym, golf simulator, fantastic kitchen and dining areas. Read more at www.wwv.com.au

A few images from around the town.

It was a good stay and we were glad we made the effort to get there.

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