Lions Club - Creswick

The Lions Club of Creswick

Creswick Lions Club - Creswick Historical SocietyThe Lions Club of Creswick was Chartered on November 20th 1973 with 22 charter members. The pages that follow briefly outline some of the community work, initiatives and projects undertaken over 50 years. It also outlines some of the contributions of the Leo Club and the Lioness Club that functioned in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The Lions club has continued to be active in the community for 50 years assisting with projects, welfare needs and support for many community organisations. This would not have been possible without the ongoing support of the wider community, by way of financial support, physical assistance or general encouragement. On October 7th, 2023 88 residents and guests joined with Creswick Lions Club Members to celebrate 50 years since the club was chartered. Guests included Edith Pepper, wife of charter member Charlie, 49 Year Member Graeme Mitchell, Kevin Flynn who joined about 48 years ago and is still a Lions member on the Bellarine Peninsular.

The Lioness Club was represented by Lorraine Ainley, Glenda McKay, and Frances Grady and the Creswick Leo Club by Carol Russell ((Pepper). Other guests included the current district Governor of Lions, Max Ford and past District Governors. Our guest list represented many organisations providing support to our community. Mayor Brian Hood spoke of the importance of volunteerism to the functioning of the community and proposed a toast to Lions. In responding DG Max outlined the role Lions plays locally, nationally, and worldwide and he outlined some of the projects Lions sponsors in the community. Max also had the honour of inducting Andrew Young as the newest member of the Creswick Lions Club joining recent inductees Leigh Bell, Kevan Pitcher and Meg Ford. Our numbers are growing slowly but we would welcome more members.

An anniversary cake was cut by our longest serving member, Graeme Mitchell and new member Meg Ford. The evening was introduced by a rousing performance from the Creswick band which drew compliments from our out-of-town guests.

President’s Address to The Lions Club of Creswick 50th Anniversary Dinner

Very briefly I would like to track some of the exploits of the Creswick Lions Club over the 50 years. There may be other tales related through the evening. Most of which you can read about in the potted history of the Lions, Leos and Lionesses in the booklet on the table. Beginning with 22 members in 1973 the numbers have fluctuated over the years and membership has also aged. Our MC, Kevin, would have been about 20 when he joined, now we are lucky to attract members who are 60. The age and fitness of this demographic has altered the way in which we do things. No longer are physical working bees possible, we aim to help people and groups in the community through the funds we raise. In the past construction projects, monster garage sales, gardening working bees, catering for events to name a few examples have been staple activities but we have had to step back and be more selective. Sausage sizzles, cake sales, raffles are the norm today, not saying that we don’t provide physical assistance where we can. Some major achievements for Lions, Lionesses and Leos over the time have included being the driving force in getting meals on wheels in Creswick, building playgrounds in the town, helping build the initial tourist centre, monster garage sales and Christmas and Spring fairs. The late Max Ainley’s signature was on most of these achievements. Creswick has an honour roll of citizens who have contributed significantly to the community and it is an honour for the Lions Club that Max and another past Lion Bob Burns have been included on it recently. In more recent times we have taken on a community welfare focus working with various welfare agencies that look after the needy in town. This focus came to the fore in 2022 when with the generous assistance of Zone and District Lions Clubs and the Australia Lions Foundation we were able to assist many families affected by the severe storms of January 5th. Our most recent contribution has been to the Creswick Hospital Appeal where we provided $9000 with the help of a dollar for dollar grant from the ALF. 2023 has seen us upgrade our BBQ trailer with assistance of a grant from the Bendigo Bank and our new Marquee advises the public that we have been in the community for 50 Years.

A Brief History of The Lions Club of Creswick 1973

Creswick Lions Club formed with 22 Charter members paying annual dues of $4.40. By the end of the first 12 months there were 29 members.

1974 Supplied labour to build an adventure playground at the Creswick Kindergarten. Assisted in door knocking for Red Cross and National Heart Foundation. Participated in the Railway Centenary Celebrations working with the Creswick Apex Club. Lions have logged a good tally of man hours in cutting and stacking wood, trimming lawns and hedges and other odd jobs for the elderly folk who needed assistance.

1975 Provided the Creswick Fire Brigade with 2-way radios. Began running Christmas Carnival in conjunction with Creswick Kindergarten and continued its involvement for about 16 years. Sponsored a 3 day road safety program, run by Senior Constable Max Ainley, for 785 local school children to coincide with National Road Safety Week. Began selling Lions Christmas Cakes, a 3lb cake sold for $2.50

1976 Provided labour and trade skills to build Tourist Centre.  Fully equipped a ward in the new wing of the Creswick Hospital. Donated a Sonicaid (foetal heart detector) to the Creswick Hospital. Donated $613 to the Darwin Cyclone Appeal.  Began conducting Woolshed Dances, first held at Wrigley’s and Gordon Spittle’s wool shed, with the highlight act one year being The Hawking Brothers.

1978 Lions Club initiated the process for establishing Meals on Wheels in Creswick.

1979 May 5th 1979 Meals on Wheels commenced in Creswick operating 3 days a week with 8 clients paying $1 per meal. Creswick Lions Club purchased a van to deliver Meals on Wheels following the successful raffle of a Shetland pony that was in foal. 1978 Through to the early 1980’s the Lions Club sponsored and hosted 9 exchange students, four from New Zealand, 4 from Sweden and one from Japan. Late 1970’s A Leo Club was formed with Peter Kelly as president and Carol Pepper as secretary and 46 charter members. The club continued into the early eighties but records (meeting minutes are only available up to May 1978).

1983 Profits from Meals on Wheels enable Creswick Lions Club to equip another ward at the Creswick Hospital. Creswick Lioness Club formed with their charter meeting on 28th May, 1983. President Glenda Hepworth, Secretary Roslyn Capuano and 21 charter members. Aluminium Cans were collected as a fund raiser.

1985 Youth of the Year hosted by the Lions and Lioness Clubs.

1988 Discussions re Lioness Club amalgamating with the Lions Club due to small numbers.  Discussion initiated about using the old police station as a permanent meeting venue.

1989 Lioness Club disbanded - March 6th, 1989.  On April 10th, 1989 Lioness Club members were inducted into the Creswick Lions Club. $1000 donate towards the establishment of a Life Education Van in Ballarat.

1994 Lions Park on North Parade Creswick – built playground and BBQ for community and tourist use, $200 also provided by the Creswick Lioness Club. (This area was used up to 2014 when it was relocated to adjacent the fire track so that a flood prevention levee bank could be built) 1994 Annual Monster Garage Sale held for the first time and in the 20 years since inception these sales have raised in excess of $40,000.  Since 1994 Creswick Senior Citizens have received donations of over $17,500 from the Lions Club monster garage sale. 1994 Horse Trail Rides operated by Lion Max Ainley took about 25 children and adults on trail rides around Creswick followed by a barbecue lunch. These were successful fund raisers for about 4 years. Chief Commissioner of Police, Neil Comrie, guest speaker

1996 Donated $1200 to purchase a two-way radio for the Creswick District Nurse. Supported local resident, Peter Tacey, obtain a Lions Hearing Dog.

1998 Spring Fiesta involvement began.

2003 Hosted the Zone final of the Youth of The Year program.

2006 Lion Bernardette Tacey represented Creswick Lions Club in in the Commonwealth Games Baton Relay, running up the main street of Creswick.

2010 Assisted with the clean-up following the floods and provided relief to the affected residents of Creswick.

2011 Purchased a trailer and BBQs with the help of Hepburn Shire, Flood Relief funds and a grant from the Federal Government Volunteers’ Grant Program. We have conducted community and fundraising sausage sizzles regularly since the purchase.

2012 $13,000 raised through the Energy Saver Program to supply chairs to the Lindsay Park function rooms.

2014 Celebrated 40 years since the Lions Club of Creswick was chartered in November 1973.

2015 Lions Bernadette and Pat Tacey hosted Exchange Lion Fern Ni from Malaysia.

2016 Conducted a successful High Tea at Lindsay Park with proceeds going to a youth awareness and respect program.

2017-19 Organised the Creswick Australia Day Breakfast, coordinating other town groups to recognize prominent citizens. 2017 Conducted a local Clean Up Australia activity. Catered for the Peace of Mind Brain Cancer Support Motorcycle Club and contributed to their appeal. Conducted the final Monster Garage Sale that had run biannually since 1994, providing thousands of dollars to support local welfare needs, community groups and individuals as well as wider Lions programs.

2018 &2019 Assisted with Blaze Aid catering at the recovery sites following bush fires at Buninyong and Lexton.

2021 Obtained an EFTPOS machine that has proven very beneficial for at BBQs, selling raffle tickets etc, we have made the machine available to local groups for their activities.

2022 Following the devastating storm and flood damage Creswick Lions Club along with other Zone and District Clubs and Australian Lions Foundation provided more than $75,000 in relief to storm affected residents as well as assisting with physical clean ups. Hosted the Lions Skin Awareness and Check Unit, with approximately 120 locals receiving free skin checks. Creswick Lion Carolyn Garguilo undertook the training as a dermoscopist, working with the program at various location around Victoria. Organised the Christmas In Creswick Event bringing together the Creswick Band, Creswick Scouts, Creswick Fire Brigade and CRESFEST as partners.

2022 & 2023 Catered for the Victorian Rogaining event held in forest around Creswick. Both events required catering for approximately 250 participants on the Saturday and Sunday of the event.

2023 With the assistance of a $10,000 grant from the Bendigo Bank we obtained a purpose-built Barbecue Trailer and at the same time upgraded our marquee to be more conspicuous at events. Provided $1000 towards a robotic learning aid for a Creswick Primary School student severely injured in an accident which enabled her to reconnect with her school and friends. Sponsored local student, Oscar Wootton who represented Australia as a triathlete at the seventh Commonwealth Youth Games in Trinidad and Tobago.

A Sample of Activities Creswick Lions Club has been involved with over 50 years • School encouragement awards • Christmas Cakes Sales • Annual Fred Icke Bike Race – manning flag stations and catering – for a number of years • Wood Raffles • Senior Citizens Bus Trips • Progressive Dinners • Melbourne Cup Sweeps • Front of House at Creswick Theatre Group Productions Australia Day Breakfast Celebrations • Thank you BBQs/Dinners for our army of Helpers • Interesting Guest Speakers from a variety of walks in life sharing their experiences, knowledge and passion for a cause. Regular Fund-Raising Activities over recent years have included • Sausage Sizzles at the monthly Creswick Market • Sale of Christmas cakes • Bunnings Sausage Sizzles • Wood raffles • Christmas Raffles • Working with other Zone Clubs to man the Ballarat Show Gates and other Showground events • Providing front of house support for the Ascot Old Time Dances and Creswick Theatre Company. • With the generous support of local businesses and individuals the Lions Club of Creswick has, over the last 50 years Local charities that work for the welfare of community members have been supported by the Lions Club including:- • St Andrews Outreach • St Johns Welfare • St Vincent de Paul • Salvation Army • Local Families/Individuals in need • Creswick Hospital and Health Services • The local schools • Ballarat Foundation • Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Unit • The Creswick Scout Group • The Creswick Brass Band Local and International Disaster Appeals have also been supported whenever the club has been able to do so. This has included fire and flood relief Australia wide and international disasters.

Past Presidents 1973 – 74 Lindsay Lyons 1974 -75 Lindsay Lyons 1975 -76 Charlie Pepper 1976 -77 Ken Russell 1977 -78 Frank Kennedy 1978 – 79 Graeme Mitchell 1979 – 80 Jack Murphy 1980 – 81 Ron Bunn 1981 -82 Max Ainley 1982 – 83 Allan Hepworth 1983 – 84 Jim Rantall 1984 – 85 Tony Dickinson 1985 – 86 Peter Leed 1986 – 87 Neil Capuano 1987 – 88 Tony Dickinson 1988 – 89 Allan Hepworth 1989 -90 Max Ainley 1990 -91 Max Ainley 1991 – 92 Gary Chandler 1992 -93 Lorraine Ainley 1993 – 94 Graeme Mitchell 1995 -96 Max Ainley 1996 -97 Max Ainley 1997 – 98 Glenda Hepworth Zone Chairmen from Creswick Lions Club 1975 – 76 Lindsay Lyons 1979 – 80 Ken Russell 1980 – 81 Charlie Pepper 1984 – 85 Allan Hepworth 1985 – 86 Allan Hepworth 1987 – 88 Peter Leed 1988 – 89 Tony Dickinson 1998 – 99 Graeme Mitchell 1999 -2000 Max Ainley 2000 -01 Max Ainley 2002 – 03 Carmel Mitchell 2003 – 04 Brian Schreenan 2004 – 05 Brian Schreenan 2005 – 06 Bernardette Tacey 2006 – 07 Bernardette Tacey 2007 – 08 Carmel Mitchell 2008 – 09 Dot Leishman 2009 – 10 Dot Leishman 2010 – 11 Dot Leishman 2011 – 12 Dot Leishman 2012 – 13 Dot Leishman 2013 – 14 Graeme Mitchell 2014-15 Graeme Mitchell 2015-16 Graeme Mitchell 2016 -17 Carolyn Gargiulo 2017 -18 Carolyn Gargiulo 2018 -19 Peter Cowie 2019 -20 Peter Cowie 2020-21 Patrick Tacey 2021-22 Patrick Tacey 2022-23 Patrick Tacey 2023-24 Patrick Tacey.

Deputy District Governors from Creswick Lions Club 1981 – 82 Charlie Pepper 1986 – 87 Allan Hepworth 1988 – 89 Peter Leed.

Speak Up Chairman District 2014 1982 – 83 Charlie Pepper 1985 – 86 Charlie Pepper Lions Club of Creswick - Long Serving Members Graeme Mitchell 49 Years 6 terms as President Max Ainley 43 Years 8 terms as President Lorraine Ainley 36 Years 1 term as President 14 terms as Secretary 1997 – 2010 Ian McFarlane 36 Years Carmel Mitchell 31 Years 2 terms as President Glenda McKay 31 Years 1 term as President Graham Taylor 31 Years Joy Toulmin 24 years John Porter 21 Years Mary Porter 20 Years Bernardette Tacey 23 Years 2 terms as President Allan Hepworth 20 Years 1 term as President Charlie Pepper 13 Years 1 term as President Brian Schreenan 12 Years 2 terms as President Robert Burns 12 Years Ray Allen 10 Years Dorothy Leishman 10 Years 2 terms as President Patrick Tacey 10 Years 4 terms as President Kevin O’Hehir 10 Years Lions Club of Creswick Current Membership President Patrick Tacey Member since 2014 Treasurer Bernadette Tacey Member since 2000 Membership Chairperson Maria Marco Member since 2016 (Creswick) Graeme Mitchell Member since 1974 Kevin O’Hehir Member since 2014 Ken Fitzsimons Member since 2011 Shirley Mitchell Member since 2020 Paul Thannhauser Member since 2020 Leigh Bell Member since 2023 Kevan Pitcher Member since 2023 Meg Ford Member since 2023 Andrew Young Member since 2023 The Leo Club of Creswick The Leo Club of Creswick was formed following a preliminary meeting held on 30/8/1976, chaired by Geoff Taylor. Office bearers were elected with Peter Kelly elected President and Carol Pepper

▪ Helping with Senior Citizens concerts and trips ▪ Raffles ▪ Hospital Visits ▪ Street Stalls ▪ Progressive Dinners ▪ Supporting young achievers in the community ▪ Donations made to charities • Donating $1000 to John Curtin Memorial Hostel (1986) ▪ Garage Sale (1986) ▪ Golf Days on ANZAC Day • Guest Speakers and guests from other clubs including overseas Lions ▪ Fashion Parade (1987) and demonstration parties ▪ Australia Day Breakfast (1988) • Attending activities and functions conducted by other Lioness Clubs On March 6th, 1989 a notice of motion moved and to disband Lioness Club. On April 10th, 1989 Lioness Club members who wished to become Lions Club members were inducted into the Creswick Lions Club

Learn More About our Society

  • Family History
  • Creswick & District
  • Migration
  • Honour Roll
  • Membership

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