When ANGAIR held its first ‘nature show’ in 1970, no one suspected that the event would become widely known, financially successful and still staged annually almost 50 years later.
It proved popular from the very first, with 1275 adults paying admission of 20 cents each.
Over the years, the main aim of the ANGAIR Wildflower Weekend and Art Show has changed from raising money to raising community awareness of the local environment and its flora and fauna. More activities are included, such as free guided walks to see plants in their local habitat, bus tours and longer nature rambles. Children’s activities have been developed to attract future generations of environmental carers and they include displays of mounted animals and birds as well as periodic live displays of reptiles and frogs.
The highlight of the ANGAIR Show for many is undoubtedly the comprehensive, labelled display of local wildflowers, plants and terrestrial orchids.
A secondary room contains beautiful displays of native Australian flowers from further afield, much photographed by visitors admiring the vibrant colours and forms. The chance to buy locally sourced and propagated indigenous plants is also a drawcard.
Educational displays of local environmental weeds surprise many visitors when they see their favourite garden plants represented there! Other environmental groups have been strong supporters of the show and participate regularly with their own stalls, including Australasian Native Orchid Society (Geelong), Friends of Eastern Otways, Geelong Field Naturalists Club, Birdlife Australia, Great Ocean Road Coast Committee, Parks Victoria, DELWP, Surf Coast Energy Group, WaterWatch and EstuaryWatch.
An Art Exhibition has been run in conjunction with the show from 1970 and has continued to attract support from artists, and major sponsors. From 1987 onwards, prizes have been offered in various categories. Most exhibits are for sale.
Set aside the weekend of September 22 – 23 this month to come to Anglesea!
Freesia refracta and Freesia alba X F. leichtlinii are declared weeds in the Surf Coast Shire because they spread easily and threaten to invade bushland. Freesias are perennial herbs that die back in summer and produce new foliage in winter. The highly fragrant trumpet-shaped flowers appearing in spring are white to cream and pink with yellow markings, shaded purple on outer surface. Each plant has at least two corms, one below the other, thus requiring deep digging to remove them.
More details about how to control this weed can be found in the archive of Weeds of the Month.
There are a number of wonderful local Friends Groups that provide ANGAIR members and the community with opportunities for involvement.