ANGAIR celebrated its golden anniversary with a buffet dinner at The Sands in Torquay.
It was fitting that the celebration was held exactly 50 years since the public meeting at the Anglesea Memorial Hall on 27 April 1969 that led to ANGAIR’s establishment.
On arrival, 160 ANGAIR members and friends enjoyed pre-dinner savouries sponsored by a grant from the Anglesea & District Community Bank Branch of the Bendigo Bank and by ANGAIR. President Wendy Crebbin welcomed those present. She thanked Pauline Dean and Chris Morrissey and their team for decorating the dining room and tables with arrangements of indigenous and native flowers from members’ gardens.
Manager of the Anglesea & Community Bank Branch of the Bendigo Bank Rob Cameron spoke briefly, congratulating ANGAIR on its five decades of caring for the environment.
Geoff Carr, highly regarded botanist from Ecology Australia and a member of ANGAIR’s foundation committee, spoke with admiration about the society’s work and impressive achievements since its inception. He then launched ANGAIR: the first 50 years, and congratulated the author Ros Gibson, who is a former ANGAIR president. and current committee member.
Dr Mark Norman, Chief Conservation Scientist at Parks Victoria, presented an inspiring address entitled The challenges of changing times: conservation and park management.
Valda D’Angri and Gail Hardman, the daughter and grand-daughter of Edith Lawn (ANGAIR’s first secretary) presented a watercolour of the view from Urquhart Bluff to Point Addis, painted by Edith in 1998. It will be displayed in the ANGAIR Natural History Centre.
Intermittently during the evening, a visual presentation of historic photographs of ANGAIR’s activities and people was displayed, attracting great interest (thanks to Olivia Clarke for compiling). Parks Victoria sponsored the hire of the audio-visual equipment. Each attendee received a booklet prepared by Ros Gibson and Margaret MacDonald listing ANGAIR’s milestones and achievements since 1969.
During the evening 90 signed copies of ANGAIR: the first 50 years were bought. The book is now available from ANGAIR for $45.