Celebration of community

Circular Head’s annual Australia Day Awards were held at Tall Timbers last week where Tony Hine, Kim Kay, Kurtis Maher and the Garden Spectacular were recognised as dual Citizen, Young Citizen and Community Event of the year. Picture: Ashleigh Force.

Event. Circular Head Council recognised the Australia Day Award recipients at a celebration evening held at Tall Timbers last Thursday.

The annual awards honour the Citizen of the Year, Young Citizen of the Year and Community Event of the Year.

This year, Tony Hine and Kim Kay were announced as dual Citizen of the Year recipients while Kurtis Maher received the Young Citizen of the Year honour. The Circular Head Garden Club event, Garden Spectacular, received the Community Event of the Year award.

Kim Kay

In 1980, Kim Kay moved to Circular Head after marrying fellow past Citizen of the Year recipient Gerald Kay.

She was a main instigator in the inaugural Bawdy Banquet in 1983 and contributed to the event throughout its three decade lifetime. The production gave more than $500,000 back to the community through fundraising.

Kim has been involved in a number of sporting clubs including Smithton Football Club, and the squash and tennis clubs.

Since the inaugural Relay for Life event held in Smithton in 2008, Kim has volunteered tirelessly with the Circular Head Relay for Life committee. She has emceed many events including Soroptimist International of Circular Head bridal parades, Carols by Candlelight, and Relay for Life team auctions and in 2016, she joined a band of volunteers in creating the Garden Spectacular at Stanley.

“I have been living in Circular Head since 1980 and even though people tell me the prerequisite for being considered a local is always five years longer than the amount of time I have been living here, I have always felt welcomed and valued,” she says.

“When I was growing up in Flowerdale we didn’t call it volunteering, it was simply a way of life; you helped your neighbours, and they helped you.

“Both Mum and Dad were strong contributors to their community and by their actions I learned how a successful community operates.

“Throughout the years I have been provided the great opportunity to work with many people who are supportive and enthusiastic in helping to make this community grow; great groups of people committed to a cause . . . I feel privileged and proud to say I live in Circular Head.”

Tony Hine

A dairy farmer for close to seven decades, Tony Hine has been an ardent supporter of the agriculture sector since his youth with the Junior Farmers’ Association.

In 1984, he and wife Sybil were awarded Dairy Farmer of the Year. He joined the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association two years later and served until 1992, holding many roles in that time.

Tony is a member of the Circular Head Agricultural Society where he has held the position of president for the last three years. He has also served as president with Circular Head Pony Club and has been involved with Smithton Lions Club for close to five decades.

In 2010, he received the highest award within the Lions Club International Foundation – a Melvin Jones Fellowship – and he has been recognised as Rotary Club of Smithton’s Citizen of the Year.

In 2013, Tony spent time in the south of the state following the devastating Dunalley fires where he volunteered his time repairing fences on properties damaged by the fire. He also organised truck loads of hay bales to be sent to the devastated community.

“I’m humbled by this. Deep down you try to help the community, improve the community and leave the community in a better space than what came before us.

“When you look around there are a lot of other people in the community who are volunteering and have dedicated themselves to assisting others and I think that I am in a situation where there are other people in the community who are doing the same thing for my family, and so this is a way that I can contribute back.”

Kurtis Maher

Completing his college education at Circular Head Christian School last year, Kurtis was a member of the school leadership team since year seven and for the last two years has represented his peers as school captain.

He joined Circular Head Youth Leaders last year where he held the position of chairperson.

He has volunteered his time with Riverbend Youth Camp as a leader since 2012, and also attends annual training weekends.

Kurtis has co-hosted and featured on episodes of local podcast The Tonic and was an integral part in the creation of the Heywire documentary Two Trains.

He now looks to begin a Bachelor of Contemporary Arts at the University of Tasmania in Launceston this year where he hopes to further challenge himself.

“It’s surreal actually,” he says.

“It’s a sense of achievement, but also a sense of happiness for me, that I can change the community for the better. To go out and help the community, without searching for any self gain, is something I love doing.”

Garden Spectacular

The Circular Head Garden Club event, Garden Spectacular, was held at Highfield Historic Site in October last year and attracted more than 3000 community members and visitors.

The event was made possible through the support of volunteers and community organisations says subcommittee chairperson Lynne Bramich.

“We took a great leap of faith that the community would get behind us when we needed help in the days leading up to the event,” she says.

“The support given by businesses, individuals and other organisations was so necessary but so generously given. On some days we had up to 80 volunteers on site.

“The award belongs to all these individuals and community groups as well as the members of the Circular Head Garden Club.”

Fellow committee member Kim mirrored these notions.

“It’s all the nuts and bolts underneath that take the 18 months of planning,” she says.

“But in that last month, and particularly that last fortnight, that’s where the creative forces come to play and without that there is no show.”

More than $22,500 was raised after the cost of creating such a display. The Garden Club plans to distribute those funds to community groups and projects in the coming months.

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