The May Day Sports afternoon after the Muster was a …

Comment on Bangtail Muster draws big crowd on glorious day by John Bell.

The May Day Sports afternoon after the Muster was a traditional feature that is fondly remembered.
Under the guidance of Mrs Joan Higgins at the Youth Centre at Anzac Hill, the sports day was a genuine all-of-community get together that resonated with every section of the Alice community.
Who can ever forget the magic twinkle toes of Betty Campbell as she regularly blitzed her rivals in the women’s section of the Alice Gift? Betty was still beating her own teenage daughters well past the age when most mums had their feet up enjoying middle age.
The tug of war and throwing the rolling pin were genuine crowd pleasers that drew crowds of 3000 to 4000 at Traeger at its peak in the 70s.
The commercialisation of May Day with the introduction of thoroughbred racing and the Alice Cup at Pioneer Park, together with ridiculous public liability imposts, signalled the beginning of the end.
In 2002 at Anzac Hill the Sports Day finally drew to a close. Mrs Higgins at the entrance gate with tears in her eyes. It was the only time I ever saw Mrs Higgins cry.
Wonderful memories of a very happy day of togetherness for all Alicians.
So sad that moneyed interests choked the life out of such a spontaneous expression of the Alice community soul.

Recent Comments by John Bell

Do what I do: a lesson for the government, police
@ Dave: You make a very good point. The initial cover-up by WHO and China and then the constantly changing incoming information on the Wuhan Virus has caught everyone on the hop and is still creating controversy around the world.
This uncertainty has had a major impact on correct protocol, country to to country.
Who can really say, even now, what is the right protocol for any individual country? Take Taiwan, for example.
With a population very close to ours, they have minimal cases of illness – fewer than 300 currently. Their protocols allow their people to go about their normal business in shopping malls markets etc. with marvellous results.
Then there is Italy. A disaster zone. No doubt a victim of geography and EU open border policy.
Then there is Central Australia. In remote communities such as Atitjere. Among the world’s oldest community with all of our cultural health issues.
The right “protocol” is still very much a lottery stab by well intentioned authorities.


COVID-19 infected is Harts Range police officer
Having read all the reports on this in the Alice Springs News and observing from down here in Melbourne, I am bemused by the criticism of this NT police officer and wife.
Down here every day I go for a walk and I see groups of cyclists on long training rides.
They meet at designated places and invariably end their ride at a takeaway coffee place, often in suburbs of inner Melbourne.
I also see groups of people every day on shopping trips to Northland shopping centre.
To criticise this police officer and his wife in these circumstances seems almost hypocritical to me.
All around the country, there are large confusing gaps with what communities are being told.
This police officer and his wife are copping unfair flak.
Especially when total lockdown has not been declared and community movement has no reliable monitoring.


COVID-19 news: Alice Springs woman diagnosed
@ Pseudo Guru. Hillsong and Scientology people are in the same virus boat as everyone else, regardless of race, colour, nationality, ethnicity or religion.
It is not constructive or helpful to take potshots at these people in a a global crisis like this.
Could even be construed as unnecessarily narky.


COVID-19 news: Alice Springs woman diagnosed
Just been talking on the phone to Aboriginal friends in Alice about the spread of the virus.
They say (1) while there are fewer people in town, there is no real indication of a coordinated effort to transport people back to their communities.
(2) Central Lands Council and Centrecorp are showing no leadership, while Tangentyere is trying, offering a bus service with petrol vouchers to help people to get from camps like the one out at the Yuendumu turn-off.
(3) Tribal people have no idea about washing hands and their movements cannot be monitored, making “self-isolation” a farce. They fear that unless there are immediate public signs of a coordinated town approach that everyone understands, there is a crisis waiting to happen.


COVID-19 news: Alice Springs woman diagnosed
@ Pseudo Guru. Pseudo: I suggest that you have a tunnel vision view mate.
Christian churches in Australia have a long history of providing essential aid to the desperate and the needy, from earliest colonial days, long before state governments came to the party.
Church institutions and congregations have been putting their hands in their pockets to provide orgs such as the Salvation Army, St Vincent de Paul, Anglicare etc.
It is a quid pro quo situation where the states get a huge quid from these volunteer orgs who, if they vacated the welfare sector, would dump an impossible burden on state and fed governments.
The state and fed governments get the best deal, and they know it.


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