Main photo & photos 13-18: Credit - Hayden Tyrls
The spirit of Christmas is best celebrated when people come together and enjoy each other’s company. Surrounded by good food, warm greetings, and shared moments, 2021 ended wonderfully for the Centre. It was a casual and fun get together where everyone mingled and exchanged stories from the year past.
It was also a time to bid farewell to two of our major contributors - Professor Phil Jennings and Rex Salur. Professor Phil leaves us after serving many years as the man at the helm, as the Chairman of the Board at the Centre and a true visionary and wetland advocate. It was under his guidance that the Centre took shape and root and became recognised prominently as "the place" for wetlands education.
Rex, with his usual charm and friendliness, served as the Treasurer for the Centre and was also a handyman who fixed and repaired many a fixture and joint. As you go around the Centre, from the Ute to the waterwise garden and the nursery, you will find Rex's signature handiwork on nearly everything. Beyond his designated role, Rex truly embodies the spirit of a great volunteer, one who has dedicated his life to the cause of the environment and contributed many hours with generosity and eagerness.
Professor Phil and Rex were felicitated with flowers and mementoes from Denise Crosbie, our Wetlands Officer. The opening speeches by Tom Perrigo, the presiding Chairman of the Board at the Centre, and Felicity Bairstow, a prominent community leader and advocate with strong ties to the Centre, included remarks on this departure and the Centre's continued commitment facing its revived role being a part of the new Wetlands Precinct. The Mayor of the City of Cockburn, His Worship Logan Howlett, also graced the occasion and added his personal remarks on the developments and the celebration.
The Christmas luncheon took place in the new Education Room facility that features a well-equipped and designed hall with sprawling views of the Centre's artificial wetland, boardwalk, and endearing birdlife. It was a pot luck style luncheon that included Denise's famous potato bake, Bart's delicious skewers, Elaine's scrumptious bread, Suparna's delectable rocky road dessert (which was an instant hit!), and Gavin on the BBQ plating out perfectly grilled veggies and snaggers.