President calls for support H
BY SARAH SCULLY
Restrictions still in place Summer is officially over but the Country Fire Authority has reminded people across the Wimmera and Mallee to avoid becoming complacent about Fire Danger Period restrictions and safety. CFA District 17 operations manager Dale Russell said fire restrictions remained in place despite the end of summer. “We are in autumn, but the landscape remains extremely dry and there is still potential for serious fires,” he said. “We have had a very active fire season so far. The Bureau of Meteorology has predicted there is still hot weather to come, meaning vegetation will remain extremely dry and continue to be a fire hazard.” Mr Russell said people heading into national parks for camping or barbecues during the Labour Day public holiday and Easter break needed to take extra care to prevent fires from starting. “With a long weekend coming up people need to stay mindful of the fire risk. We’re asking people to please take extra care and do the right thing to make sure any campfires are fully extinguished,” he said. During the Fire Danger Period people cannot light fires in the open air without a written permit from the CFA or a municipal fire prevention officer. Fire danger periods are based on conditions and take into account fuel moisture, fuel loads, grassland curing, weather and rain. “Fire restrictions remain in place, meaning you can’t burn off without a permit,” Mr Russell said. “Fire Danger Periods are declared for each municipality and apply continuously throughout the whole period, even when it is raining. “The CFA decides when the Fire Danger Period is declared and revoked.” More information is available on website cfa.vic.gov.au/can or by calling 1800 240 667.
orsham Agricultural Society’s new president Dalton Cross has implored Horsham and district residents to take ownership of one of the community’s biggest assets.
“I don’t want people looking at the showground and thinking, oh that’s where Horsham Show is,” Mr Cross said. “I don’t want it to be seen as a place that gets used once a year. I want people in the community to start taking ownership of it and to use it for their events.” Mr Cross said a new community garden, launched at the showground last week, was an exciting step in that direction. Students from St Brigid’s College and Ss Michael and John’s Primary School are leading the project, which focuses on youth becoming involved in the community. Youth was also a feature of the society’s annual meeting late last month, which signified a changing of the guard. At 22, Mr Cross is the society’s youngest president. “Our vice-president Leigh McGennisken is also 22, my brother Dustin, 19, is also on the committee, and our junior vice-president Nick Zordan is 31,” he said. “It’s exciting being elected president, but I’m nervous at the same time. “Because you are so young you feel like the old blokes know it all, but then you have been put in the role by those blokes, so obviously they have faith in you that you can do it.
CHANGING OF THE GUARD: Dalton Cross, 22, is Horsham Agricultural Society’s new president. Mr Cross is part of the society’s new, youth-led executive. Picture: KELLY LAIRD “They are still on the committee, so there are plenty of people we can ask for help if we need it – but at the same time it is great to put some of our own ideas forward.” Mr Cross was vice-president in 2015 and took over the top job from Peter Jackman. Mr Cross, who is this year’s Horsham Young Citizen of the Year, started helping with Horsham Show’s animal nursery when he was 12. He took over running the nursery a year or two later and has continued to volunteer his services to the society. Mr Cross said the community
garden project and building on last year’s Horsham Show were key priorities for his term as president. The 2015 Horsham Show moved to a Sunday from a traditional two-day, mid-week show. “Last year’s show was well above what we expected,” he said. “This year I want to see even more people through the gates and more community involvement with the show. There is a lot of work to be done and a lot of different ways people can be involved, not only in the show, but at the showground. “It might be that someone has a tin
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of white paint sitting in the shed that they think could be used on one of the buildings. Or, people might want to be involved in a working bee – or even bring down a plate of hedgehog for smoko. “We welcome volunteers in any shape or form. There are plenty of ways people can be involved.” Mr Cross said people could call the society on 5381 1187 for more information about volunteering opportunities. The 2016 Horsham Show is on Sunday, September 25.
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ST ARNAUD Wednesday, March 9, 2016
Read the March 9 edition online!