Big morning tea fundraiser

By Seymour Telegraph

The Mitchell Shire Concert Band held its first ever Cancer Council Biggest Morning Tea on June 5 — and it was a smash hit, according to band secretary and bingo manager Pam Collings.

Sixty-five people attended the event, which was held in memory of Maree Nicholson who died last month after a battle with cancer.

For many it was their first time at a Biggest Morning Tea, including Mitchel Shire councillor Bill Chisholm who was lucky enough to win a raffle prize, along with Margaret Paige, Kerry Sterry, Anita Stevenson, Fred Lawrence and Judy Gallien.

Aside from cash and online donations and the two raffles, funds were also raised from entry to the morning tea, sale/donations for calendars supplied by the Wallan Relay for Life team, a Lucky $100 Bill competition, and from proceeds from the bingo game after morning tea.

In total, Mrs Collings said the Biggest Morning Tea event raised $3100 for the Cancer Council.

‘‘We were absolutely blown away by the support from organisations and individuals to our first morning tea, that we held specifically to honour Maree Nicholson, who called our bingo for 36 years,’’ Mrs Collings said.

‘‘We had sponsorship from Woolworths, Seymour; PJ Cupcakes and Cakes; Bespoke Hairdressing; and Harvey Norman, Bendigo. And a cast of thousands baked, made sandwiches, sold raffle tickets, put up flyers, helped on the day with a myriad of tasks, and spread the word by every means imaginable.

‘‘We thank each and every one of the people who volunteered their time and energy in helping to make this event such a success.’’

Playing bingo afterwards, Mrs Collings said, was a ‘‘fitting’’ way to end the day.

‘‘Bingo was a large part of Maree’s life. Our Tuesday bingo was failing to attract people and we made the decision to close it down on February 20, which I know was a big blow to Maree,’’ Mrs Collings said.

‘‘It was good to have the chance to play one last Tuesday bingo and have it be a successful and exciting game. I know Maree would have liked that.’’

The Mitchell Shire Concert Band runs bingo every Saturday at its band rooms in Chittick Park, Pollard St, Seymour. Eyes down at 1pm, with light lunches and snacks available, as well as free tea and coffee throughout the sessions.

The Mitchell Shire Concert Band is a not-for-profit independent community group that offers musical entertainment for other community groups and events and provides affordable tuition of wind and percussion instruments through its group learner program.

For more information on the band or the bingo phone Pam on 0420200278 or visit the band’s website at