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Australia Day

2024 Australia Day Events

Hamilton Botanic Gardens (wet weather alternative Hamilton PAC)
Official Southern Grampians Shire celebrations including flag raising, performances by local musicians, Hamilton Brass, The Hamilton Singers and Footprints the Choir, a citizenship ceremony, Australia Day Award presentations, and free light lunch.

Seymour Park, corner of Glendinning and Stirling Streets.
Flag raising, guest speaker Dr Jane Gaussen, and free community breakfast.

5.30pm – 8pm
Heritage Park, off Henty Highway.
Free BBQ and salads, BYO chairs, picnic rugs and drinks.

Byaduk/North Byaduk
Byaduk Sports Pavilion, 1 Byaduk-Penshurst Rd.
Flag Raising ceremony and free breakfast

Cavendish Town square, Scott St.
Flag raising by Cavendish Scouts, local historian guest speaker, community awards, free community breakfast.

Coleraine Tourist Information Centre, Pilleau St.
Flag raising ceremony, award presentations, guest speaker Bruce Hudgson OAM, past Council Chairman Lions Club International, community breakfast.

Dunkeld Memorial Park, Parker Street.
Flag raising, local award presentations, guest speaker and free community breakfast.

3pm - 6pm
Glenthompson Lions Park, Glenelg Hwy.
Flag raising ceremony, guest speakers, BBQ.

Penshurst Botanic Gardens, Martin St
Flag Raising Ceremony, guest speaker Paul Sutherland Music, Penshurst Citizen of Year Award, free Lions Club breakfast.

Reserve Rotunda,
Flag Raising, Guest Speaker & Free Community BBQ Breakfast

For further information please contact Council on 5573 0444 or email

*All events are subject to change.

2023 Australia Day Award winnners

Raymond McIntosh – Southern Grampians Shire Council Citizen of the Year

Raymond "Mocka" McIntosh has been a contributor of the local community for a long time, traveling across Australia to set up fights for his boxers. Boxing is a way of life for Mocka, but it has also been a lifeline to younger citizens, helping kids with needs, and creating opportunities to straighten lives through fitness and dedication. They have started off as beginners, making their way up to pro fighters, and going all of the way to Commonwealth Games trials, Asian-Oceanic Olympic Pre Selections, all after winning multiple State Titles.

Trust has been an important element in Mocka's Gym, where if kids didn't have the money for a session they weren't turned away. Mocka would just say next time and move on, as his work was about getting the best out of the kids with no outside distraction. As time progressed and the kids turned into young men and women, the sacrifice of time from Mocka didn’t end but was put into the cars, then the bus, driving the district looking for sparring partners.

Mocka’s training runs throughout the week, including women only classes. He assists those that want to take the sport further, male, female and junior members, and has dedicated much of his life to mentoring others. Mocka is also very involved with the Coleraine RSL, and the annual ANZAC Day march and had played football for Coleraine Football Netball Club for several years.

A great effort whilst also working full-time, husband to wife Helen, raising three kids, and now being a grandfather.

Mocka's drive and passion for the sport of boxing extends into the everyday lives of his pupils, instilling values that working hard work creates success.

Live 4 Life Crew – Southern Grampians Young Citizen of the Year

The Southern Grampians Live 4 Life Crew are Year 9 leaders from across the shire who have volunteered their time to increase understanding, reduce stigma and improve mental health knowledge.

As mental health ambassadors, they share positive mental health messages in their respective schools. In 2022, over 450 year 8, 9 and 10 students in the Southern Grampians Shire received teen mental health first aid training through Live 4 Life!

100 BULLDOGS FOR 100 YEARS – Southern Grampians Shire Council Community Event of the Year

More than 120 Bulldog tractors from across Australia converged on the Hamilton Pastoral Museum in October to participate in the Australian record attempt to bring the largest number of Bulldog tractors together to celebrate 100 years since the first Lanz Bulldog tractor rolled off the Germany production line.

The event attracted 1,600 enthusiasts from across Australia and was the largest rally ever held on the Hamilton Pastoral Museum’s grounds, establishing the Australian record for the largest gathering of Bulldog tractors. Considerable work went into planning, setting out and weather proofing the rally grounds. Bulldog tractors played an important role in Australian agriculture and many of the restored and unrestored tractors showed they still ‘had it’ and participated in tractor pull demonstrations. The tremendous success of the two-day rally was thanks to the people who brought their tractors long distances to participate and the team of volunteers that worked tirelessly to make the event run so smoothly. Profits from the event will go towards maintaining and expanding the Hamilton Pastoral Museum’s historic buildings and displays to celebrate the legacy of farming and regional living in western Victoria.

Mayor's Award - Peter Milburn

Peter has given countless hours to the community of Hamilton and District and to numerous charities through his music. He plays the banjo, sings and has an excellent sound system which he makes freely available for the events in which he is involved. Peter has since been instrumental in the establishment of "The Evergreens", which has built an admirable record of community contributions, playing regularly at "The Grange and "The Birches" and recently for a Western District Health Service fundraising event. In November last year, "The Evergreens" were a key performer in a concert held at the Hamilton Performing Arts Centre to support Care Australia's Appeal for the Ukraine.

Peter has performed at "The Grange" and "The Birches" at least monthly over many years including intense months of COVID holding sessions outside with speakers so residents could enjoy the performance, but be protected from possible infection. Numerous charities have benefited from his busking including but not limited to Blaze Aid, Standing Tall, Police Legacy, Drought Appeals, the M.R.I. Appeal, the Hamilton and District Rural Australians for Refugees Group, and H.I.R.L.

Mayor's Award - YUMCHA Hamilton 18 – 25 Crew**

YUMCHA Hamilton 18 – 25 crew is a youth led social group which celebrates diversity, socially connects, and engages young people who identify as LGBTQIA+, their friends and allies.

The young people involved in this group are amazing community champions, who use their lived experience to create awareness as they support health promotion and inclusion through activities including planning projects and events showing great leadership whilst being positive role models for the younger group members.

Each of the groups personal efforts have made a significant contribution to the community.

**Southern Grampians Shire Council Community Recognition Awards**

Ainsley Wilson

Ainsley's family involvement in the Rotary Club of Hamilton has seen her providing catering for all Rotary functions and fundraising events including Sheepvention. Ainsley is a member of the Society for Growing Australian Plants and the Wannon-Nigretta Community Group. She is passionate about her environment and growing Australian native plants and alerts the Wannon community for the eradication of South Africa Weed Orchid whilst removing these within the Wannon Falls Reserve and in the area surrounding her property. Ainsley is always helping neighbours who are unwell, providing support and care, looking after neighbours' pets and property while they are absent.

Jane Van Herpen

Jane was a Western District Health Service volunteer for 10+ years as a driver and provided a sewing service for patients/residents of Eventide. A member of the Wannon Nigretta Community Group and the Hamilton Eisteddfod Board for over a decade, she has also been an enthusiastic Member of the Hamilton Singers and recently joined the Uniting Church Second Bite program. Jane has a strong commitment to her neighbours driving elderly residents to medical appointments, assisting with shopping and has tutored many local children through their school life, acting as both tutor and mentor.

Clare Hilsdon

Claire is a mum, a part-time teacher aide, and a regular volunteer within the Southern Grampians including - A Run Director at Hamilton parkrun, a running Coach for both adults and children at the Hamilton Running Club, and is a mentor at Standing Tall in Hamilton.

Claire also volunteers as a Melbourne Marathon Pacer - where she runs the total 42.2kms in a set time supporting other runners along the way to complete the distance and achieve their marathon running goals.

Celeste Benoit

Celeste is a passionate member of the Hamilton Fire Brigade where she selflessly dedicates her time to protecting the community.

Celeste has a passion for youth programs and is the state representative for the local district for young adults within CFA. As the current lieutenant, she strives to be a change maker within the organisation and promotes and enhances new members by being an exemplary role model and mentor.

Rebecca Dohney

Rebecca is an inspiration to many, raising three children and contributing to almost every local event. She donates her time and marketing skills to anyone trying to better the community.

She runs the ‘Hello! TARRINGTON’ Facebook page and organised a town trick or treat this year donating her time and money setting up ‘pop up’ locations.

She is always willing to help anyone in need.

Timothy Fry

Tim is currently the Unit Controller at Hamilton SES. In the recent Hamilton flooding event, he and his partner Jess were in the SES Offices co-ordinating the 71 calls for help that night. At the same time they both knew their own house was suffering water damage. Tim is dedicated, methodical, organised and an excellent trainer.

He does a lot of the training at the SES and will often train SES volunteers on weekends. He is an inspiration and a role model to other SES volunteers and a vital member of our community.

Jessica Mayne

Through her involvement with the local SES and community work, Jessica’s vibrant community spirit shines through.

Along with her partner Tim, Jessica has been a dedicated part of the SES team for the past six years and devotes all her free time to making sure her beloved community is in safe hands.

Erika Murphy

Erika is a self-employed, busy wife and mother of three (two of whom have ongoing health issues). Between managing work, home and hospital trips, Erika’s inventive fundraising for the RCH has been outstanding, raising over $20,000 in the past five years. Her capacity to involve not only family, but friends, small business, sporting clubs and community members has ensured unequivocal and repeated responses of support by all who become involved.

Amongst all of this, she somehow found time to take a leading role in fundraising for the Epilepsy foundation which raising over $10,000.

Ingrid Mojica Perez

Ingrid grew up in Hamilton and has made significant contributions to the local legal community. She has dedicated her career to assisting locals, particularly with Legal Aid and pro-bono work in the areas of Family Law, Criminal Law, Child Protection and Intervention Orders including Family Violence matters.

Ingrid has made significant voluntary contributions as the Young Lawyer’s Representative on the Western District Law Association Committee for a number of years and her dedication to assisting others is frequently commended by clients and her peers in the legal community.

The Balmoral Op Shop

The Balmoral Op Shop is run by a group of local ladies who welcome visitors into the shop like an old friend helping locals, campers and visitors alike opening the doors so that they can come in and have a look around and grab a bargain.

Bus tours have been organised to come to Balmoral just to visit our ladies.

They have supported many within the community including the Christmas BBQ’s.

Kathy Mibus

Kathy has worked tirelessly for many years collecting and organising programs that raise significant amounts of money for the Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal. Her generosity seems endless as she supports many charity programs including Pink Ribbon Day, Indigenous Missions, the Lutheran World, the Starlight Foundation, Second Bite and has sponsored a child through the Smith Family since COVID.

As Kathy says, if any worthwhile local charity requires support, we will support it with magnificent results. Kathy’s father setup a trust which supports the Start Foundation. Jacob was a beneficiary for his prosthesis for his leg.

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