Tuesday, 16 November 2010
Robertson Electorate: Brisbane Water Oyster Festival
I rise today to congratulate the organisers and participants of the Brisbane Water Oyster Festival, which I attended at Ettalong Beach last weekend. It was the 10th time the festival has been held. As oysters are want to do, the festival has developed into a pearl of an event over the last 10 years—25,000 people attended a weekend of festivities to celebrate the marvellous molluscs of Brisbane Water, Broken Bay and the Hawkesbury River. A total of about 6,000 dozen oysters actually went down the hatch.
The festivities began on the Friday night with the Oyster Festival ball at Ettalong Beach Memorial Club. It was a great chance to frock up for a good cause. The festival has an important fundraising element. In all, seven Central Coast women took part in a charity queen event. They raised a record total of $90,000 for the Cancer Council of New South Wales Breast Cancer Research and Support Services. That is the largest amount that this festival has ever raised in one year. Locally, that means supporting the activities of the Cancer Council New South Wales office at Erina, which runs support groups such as the young women’s soiree and another group for breast cancer survivors over the age of 50. That money also funds the production of the Understanding Cancer series of publications around breast cancer. These resources are often the first information received by someone who has received a breast cancer diagnosis.
Scarlett Napier of St Huberts Island raised an amazing $30,000. Scarlett was the Miss Charity Queen and was sponsored by the Ettalong Beach Memorial Club. Aimee Hanslow of Woy Woy was Queen of the Festival. Her sponsor was Kevin Crabtree of Euphoria Hair Salon in Point Clare. The other charity contestants were Chloe Brooks, sponsored by Star FM 104.5; Tyler Matterson, sponsored by Woy Woy Leagues Club; Nikki Sneade, sponsored by Woy Woy Bowling Club; Alicia Howard, sponsored by Avoca Beach Bowling Club; and Rachel Scoins, sponsored by Indulge Yourself Beauty. There was another charity category, the Mother of Pearl, which was won by Umina Beach resident Vikki White. The runner-up was Mandy Coolen from Star FM, who is just as charitable when she is playing rock stars as the host of the morning shift on Star 104.5.
I thank them all from the bottom of my heart for their wonderful generosity. The Peninsula Chamber of Commerce also raised almost $14,000 for Gosford Hospital for a colposcope, which is a diagnostic device to follow up on abnormal pap smears. Part of that funding came in the form of a $10,000 cheque from the New South Wales government which was presented by my state counterpart Maree Andrews. Last and not least I would like to pay tribute to the dedication and hard work of Deborah and Matthew Wales from the Peninsula Chamber of Commerce. This community event has again brought out the best in the people of the Peninsula. I just put on record that Scarlett Napier indicated to me that she found out so much about participating in her community and about breast cancer by her participation in this event. (Time expired)