Just when I thought I had silly season nailed! It jumps up on me at warp speed, not a present wrapped or even a for!
Instead I found myself aimlessly wandering around in late December in jam packed shopping centres amidst other frantic shoppers in the same dilemma, wishing wholeheartedly that I had gone for the online option with free gift wrap and freight months in advance like sensible organised beings! I am a huge fan of face to face retail therapy and absolutely love supporting the locals; however, this year I just left my run ridiculously too late and suffered a serious case of Christmas chaos claustrophobia and had to limit my time in public shopping centres to late at night and the wee hours of the morning. Thank god for early and late night trade – yes, I was the sad figure knocking on the windows at dawn saying … are you open yet? Trying to get in and out alive before the Kris Kringle crush was a mission in itself! Somehow in the grab and tackle for last minute gifts, I came away with some vaguely strange and on occasion wildly inappropriate gifts bought in haste … I am hoping to make it up to loved ones at Easter …chocolate really is my forte, after all.
In a whirlwind of parties, the New Year calls, but not without acknowledgment of the adornment of birthdays, celebrations and weddings in the last months of the year. The gorgeous Annette Holmes and Kane O’Donnell were married in late November in a beautiful garden ceremony at Frazer’s Creek near Beechwood at the O’Donnell family property. The Melbourne based bride wore a stunning vintage lace top dress, with bridesmaids in soft metallic grey. Guests were greeted by Pimms and lemonade on the lawn, an array of gourmet cheeses and a stunning outdoor marquee with bocce and games to while away the evening. Eighty guests enjoyed canapés by SilverSpoon Catering followed by a two tier cake made by the bride of orange and poppyseed with a divine passionfruit cream and chocolate mud with a wickedly decadent milk chocolate ganache. Guests embraced the romantic vintage theme of the wedding, relaxing on lounges and stunning wooden furniture in the marquee, a special thanks to both sets of parents for thier input and support. Annette and Kane, a local lad and Cambridge graduate, make their home back in Melbourne. Congrats to a beautiful couple – wishing you every happiness on your journey together!
For the first time in the history of this column, I have actually had the opportunity to attend the Festival of the Sun. Congrats to Simon, Scott and the crew at FOTSUN for an excellent showcase of live talent on our water’s edge at Sundowner. We had an absolute ball and soaked up the very positive vibe of the festival (one small tip – if you are feeling a little self conscious about the age factor … beware! A sure way to feel your age is to walk through a camp ground of gorgeous young things surely not old enough to be away from home or driving a vehicle but looking fantabulous in the festival glad rags! Yikes!) Jack was chuffed to debut at FOTSUN with his first festival experience, rocking it out in the pram – freestyle and free range in the main stage area – complete with his own green earphones to protect tiny ears – not that they stayed on too long! Hermitude was clearly a crowd favourite and certainly mine, with the talented Phil Jamieson and Joe Robinson smoking it up for their local fans. Sadly, Jack’s love of the festival ended just prior to the ever stylish Kimbra stepping onto main stage, putting an end to our festivities with a quick exit stage left! By all accounts, the grand finale by the sassy songbird was fabulous. Congrats to all for another successful year.
Some may have heard talk of a roaring 1920s party … a prohibition shindig at a speak easy joint held at the Flynns Beach Surf Club. Louise Beaumont’s 30th birthday was the occassion – vintage cars, fast women, fabulous costumes, deadly cocktails, fine food and swinging music set the stage for a hilarious night of fun and dodgy vintage swimwear worn by none other than Teale Bryan and Steve Foye, illegal gambling and a bootful of cigars. A night to remember for some … others are still trying to forget! Happy birthday, Lou!
Lovely local couple Kelly Andrews and Joshua Moore were married on a wet and wild day in November, with 95 guests celebrating this special day. The ceremony was held at Rydges with celebrant Marie Watts, followed by a reception in the waterfront function rooms where guests enjoyed canapés, entrée and main and a delicious three tier chocolate mud cake made by Trish Jackson. Kelly looked stunning in an ivory gown, with her bridesmaids, Carla Andre and Kate Styles in a beautiful blue. Josh was attended by Mick Styles and Jade Collyer. Congrats to the happy couple, who make their home in Wauchope. All the best, you two!
Congrats to Kate and Al Owen of Black Duck Brewery, who celebrated the opening of their Acacia Avenue brewery on Saturday 15 December. Eighty guests enjoyed fab food and ales to celebrate the newest boutique brewery on the scene. Well done, Kate and Al! Happily, I was able to get a sneak peak at the fab venue when the FOCUS crew held their Christmas party at the venue in December. Congrats to Lou and Jay, who celebrated 7 years of FOCUS and 85 editions. Guests enjoyed yummy treats from the FOCUS food truck, including Kimchi, Asian Pork Sliders and yummy chicken gumbo. Guests, including Belinda and Zoe Rodger of Ella Baché, Steve and Meredy of Glasshouse Flowers, Karl Mclean of ANZ, Eric and Monica Robinson of The Other Chef, Kylie Morris of Hot Graphics, Rob Marlow of Café Culture and his lovely lady, Peta, and David Young from Never Late Electrical, to name but a few of the 80 strong crowd, all enjoyed ales and a little Christmas cheer.
Congrats to Andrew Miedecke, who recently celebrated a special birthday at his waterfront home in Port Macquarie. Andrew was joined by his sons, George and Harry, and 12 of his closest friends dating back to school days, who flew in from all over the country to raise a glass to the birthday boy. The gents had a relaxed evening of seafood, steak, fine cheeses and wines. Happy birthday, Andrew!
I leave you this month preparing for a dash back to the 1940s at the NYE Casablanca event at the hotel. Over 120 guests will be channelling Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman for a fabulous night of cocktails, live Tango, cabaret singers, dancers and gambling! I think I can feel a little cocktail or two coming on! Happy New Year! Kate.
This article can be found in issue 86 of Greater Port Macquarie Focus
Holiday season is here! Preparations are in full swing for end of year bashes, office wraps up and catch ups with friends and family before we all disappear into the busy blur that is Christmas!
Event season is in full canter, with Port Cup safely under our fashionable belts and with sunstroke and silliness kept to a bare minimum, thanks to some seriously stunning headwear and hideously long bar lines!
Winter is supposed to be a time to slow down, rug up, take it easy and enjoy some chill time from the silliness of the rest of the calendar year … sorry – didn’t get that memo!
This month has been a month of firsts for me. First time out of the office for any period of time (driving me a little bit kooky!), first time being an aunty, and the first time I haven’t been able to buckle my own shoes!
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Happy New Year! Obviously I blinked and missed the entire 365 days! 2010 has been a runaway train of events, Oprah visits, elections, wiki leaks, restaurant openings and new beginnings, and it has fled as speedily as it arrived! It is hard to process just how busy it has actually been while suffering from the after effects of a mild to worrisome case of fruit mince pie overload. I am certainly set to explode should I attempt to force in one more morsel of festive food! I had to have something to substitute my beloved bubbles – food was an unnaturally keen focus for me this year! For the first time in my adult life, I am not suffering from the after effect of a New Year sauced with sparkling wine! Thankfully, I shared my Las Vegas New Year’s table with a fellow mummy to be, and we were able to give each other moral support as the vodka, whisky and increasingly bad jokes flowed to the other 130 guests. The total lack of sparkles did not inhibit my attempts at a NYE boogie, with careful effort not to fall over and do myself (and the bump!) some serious and permanent harm! Zebu bar + grill opened with a bang on Xmas Eve, with locals and tourists coming to check the newest bar on the block. Guests were treated to cocktails by resident master mixer Brent Tozer and some tunes by Ollie Brooke and special guest Damion Pell on electric trumpet. It was great to see locals enjoying the waterfront views and the mellow surroundings, as they welcomed in another Port Macquarie Christmas. Plenty of Champagne no. 5 and Electric Lemonade cocktails were passed over the bar, with the boys digging into the ten beers on tap – including Oprah’s beer of choice, Wicked Elf. I busied myself with a beautifully crafted mocktail and a wood fired pizza while Steve got stuck into an Asahi and serving of local oysters. Boxing Day continued the cruisy theme, with regular afternoon chill out session Lazy Sundaze kicking off at 2pm with cruisy tunes and Bloody Marys and Caprioskas over the water. Kelli and Jason Dragos tied the knot at Harry’s Lookout on Saturday 4 Dec, despite clouds and some serious rain showers. Harry’s Lookout was spared the showers, and the couple were able to say, “I do” in front of 80 friends and family. Guests hurried back to Flynns Beach Surf Club, which was adorned in white and soft pink, with candles and delicate white Chinese lanterns. Guests enjoyed SilverSpoon canapés and main course followed by a decadent Profiterole tower from BitterSweet Café, adorned with tiny pink roses. The family paid tribute to the couple, including Jason’s two children, who were clearly over the moon to have Kelli join their family. Not a dry eye in the house after that speech! Congratulations to Kelli and Jason, who make their home in Port Macquarie. The team from First National celebrated Christmas in style, with a trip out to Roses Vineyard at Innes View. Belinda and Ron Fischer organised a special family day at the vineyard, including wine tasting, canapés, Christmas punch (absolutely lethal, I may say … a secret recipe of course!) and gourmet SilverSpoon BBQ followed by miniature handcrafted desserts. Sales agent Wayne Carver played a jolly Santa, as kids big and small ran amok across the vineyard, playing cricket and opening their gifts. The weather was divine, as duo Matt & Liz crooned to the party of 30 as they sat and sipped on the terrace overlooking the vines and Innes Lake. A huge day that didn’t end there, with various members of the team heading back to a pool party and a few more bevvies! Cassegrain Wines held their Christmas party on a balmy evening on the verandah of their restaurant, with 60 of their team along to celebrate another big year. John & Eva Cassegrain and board member John Laurie addressed and thanked the team for the efforts and cracked a few bottles of their award winning sparkling and chardonnay to kick off the night. Guests enjoyed a selection of cheeses, prawns and oysters followed by Christmas ham and salads, whipped up by chef extraordinaire and all round handyman Chris Hall. (P.S. His potato salad was to die for!) Guests finished off the night with chocolate mud cake and a few more drops of their finest. Sales and Marketing Manager Leanne had a fabulous night, except for a minor whoopsy as she dropped the cheese cake on the floor! Mudcake all round from that point on! Merry Christmas to you! Jenny and Duncan MacArthur threw a massive fancy dress bash for Duncan’s 60th birthday celebration at their Narran River Road property in King Creek. Duncan proved a dashing Hugh Hefner, while Jenny looked fabulous in a chartreuse green fifties inspired gown. One hundred guests, including family from Scotland, enjoyed the balmy evening, with Duncan’s brother playing a Scottish birthday tune on the bag pipes. Guests enjoyed a series of SilverSpoon canapés followed by some luscious birthday cake from Burkhart’s Bakery. We slipped out the door as the party ramped up, with a four piece band rocking into the summer night. Duncan’s brother was last heard bag piping down the paddock close to midnight! Happy birthday Duncan! So a new year it is, and what a year it will be. A New Year resolution … spend more time at the beach (yeah right!), try and stay sane as the delightful designated driver and endeavour to see my toes again! Wishing you all a fabulous 2011!
Has somebody turned the volume down on winter? The sneaky pseudo summer weather has inspired many of us to get out and about, including my hubby, who has gone into uber prune mode – cutting every living thing in our winter-worn garden within in an inch of its fragile life.
Seriously, enough already!
Allegedly we are supposed to be on the party wind down for the year – someone has obviously forgotten to give Port Macquarie this memo! Celeb spottings, race days, birthdays and weddings literally saturated this hectic month, with more of the same expected for March! Clearly I am going to need a bumper pack of party feet and serious dose of Vitamin B to get me through!
We recently had a delicious breakfast at new café ‘The Milkbar’ under the Observatory. It was standing space only for the wet and woolly Sunday when we celebrated good friend Jamie ‘Sparkles’ Styles’s birthday. Thankfully our booking ensured us a very comfy table! Eight of us tucked into a fabulous brekky and some seriously yummy coffees. Steve clearly enjoyed himself, tucking in to no less than 3 luscious lattes! In typical form, the ladies in the party were left wondering how breakfast turned into beers, with the party going through three venue changes and finishing at four in the afternoon! Happy birthday Jamie – looking forward to trying the new release ‘sparkles’ from Cassegrain soon!
We did a spot of power shopping a couple of weekends ago and we bumped (literally bumped – poor thing!) into Toni Collette. The gorgeous Aussie actress must have been home on some well deserved R&R with hubby Dave Galafassi and his family in Wauchope. Fresh from her recent Golden Globe win in the US for her starring role in The United States of Tara, Toni topped off her trip with dinner at the Boardwalk for an evening of vino and tapas. She was even so gracious as to sign a plate for the Boardwalk boys to hang on their wall of fame. It’s good to see that even Hollywood hasn’t diminished her love for the coast or a bit of retail therapy at Just Jeans! A girl needs a decent pair of jeans, after all!
Exciting times for ex local and beautiful entrepreneur Samantha Wills, whose success in Tinseltown continues to sky rocket. This lovely and hardworking lass, now based in New York City, recently showed her wares to LA style guru Rachel Zoe from the Rachel Zoe Project. Rachel styles for all the huge names in Hollywood, including the leggy and lovely Cameron Diaz. Rachel most notably styled Anne Hathaway for her Oscar red carpet/Hugh Jackman moment – it’s a tough job, but somebody’s gotta do it! There is no doubt local girl Sam will continue her ascent to fame and fortune. Sam may be planning a little visit home later in the year for a special local event – fingers crossed she can fit us into her very busy and fabulous schedule!
If rain on your wedding day is a sign of good luck, then Joel Wehlow and his lovely new wife Jenny Mezzina are going to be the luckiest people on earth! The two had planned to be married on sunny Oxley Beach; however, due to the torrential downpour, a quick ‘Plan B’ venue change was put in place as the happy couple said “I do” at Flynn’s Beach Surf Club. Guests were bussed back to Pam and Arthur Wehlow’s stunning Fernbank Creek Rd property, where they were greeted by a magical marquee filled with stunning flowers from Touchwood and twinkling tealights. Over 160 guests greeted the gorgeous couple, who quite literally radiated love and fun throughout the night. Jenny looked absolutely stunning in her off the shoulder gown, with her gorgeous bridesmaids in a striking blue. Joel and the boys wore camel suits and looked handsome and happy as they partied throughout the night. The whole wedding was a family affair, with both sides assisting with preparations on and before the night. Parents of the bride, Jane and Gerry Mezzina, along with sister Louise and hubby Demitri put the final touches on the marquee. MC Josh did a fabulous job of keeping the night on track. We had lots of fun with the guests, including Jenny’s cheeky and charming Italian uncle, who insisted we keep a solid stream of red vino coming his way! The guests enjoyed Silverspoon canapés followed by a sumptuous buffet main course. Rain certainly didn’t dampen the crowd’s mood, with every Mezzina and Wehlow up on the dance floor! Congratulations to Jenny and Joel – wishing you lots of fun, love and happiness!
Alicia Steinhardt and Shaun Weelands were married in mid February in a ceremony at historic St Thomas’ Church. Seventy guests enjoyed a waterfront reception at Rydges with a wedding feast created by Executive Chef Michael Schubert. Guests enjoyed champagne and canapés, with band ‘Well Swung’ entertaining the guests throughout the evening. The main course was followed by a chocolate mud wedding cake from Penelope K for dessert. The couple honeymooned with a cruise on the South Pacific. Congrats to you both.
We had a lovely if somewhat windy day at the Port Macquarie races in February. Rydges & Travelworld supported the Focus Fashions on The Field for the annual ladies’ day, Queen of the North race meet. Thankfully it was a sunny day and we enjoyed an afternoon of bubbles and nibbles on the Chairman’s Lounge Deck overlooking the track. It was good to see some fashionable and familiar faces, including Dianne Richmond, Toni Cooper, Annabel Warren and Varan Freestone, all frocking up and looking fabulous on the day. Official judges Ria Smith from Funk’d and I had our work cut out for us, with so many elegant ladies and gents to choose form. Congrats to all winners who went home with a swag of prizes to the tune of $5,000, including goodies from Travelworld Port Macquarie, Novotel Coffs Harbour, Rydges, Tommy’s By The Beach, Touchwood Flowers, East Coast Laser and Ella Baché. The guys in Port really should wise up to this whole ‘ladies’ day’ concept – where else are you going to get a chance to rub shoulders with so many fine fillies all frocked up and ready to party? Note to self, fellas – Queen of the North – worth a diary entry for next year!
I made a rather rash comment in an online public forum last month that I would be hanging up my party shoes for the season … It seems that this statement was quite hasty and is considerably harder to adhere to than initially anticipated! Statement officially retracted!
Until next month, Kate.
The sun is back and life is good, but who has time to sunbake? The freakish reality is that we are all on the out of control treadmill of life, hurtling straight towards Christmas at a frenetic pace, that seems only to increase with all the events on the ever growing calendar! Does it ever stop? No … and that’s just how we like it!
September marks the true beginning of the social season with some key events on the Port Macquarie schedule, bringing even more reasons to frock up and get out there. The Business Awards on Sept 4 always seem to draw a sell-out crowd – corporate schmoozing and of course the underlying, yet undeniable competitive streak will be at the fore, with local businesses vying for the top gong in their industry.
K-Rudd must have heard the social scene was heating up and has decided to join in the fun, with a special visit to our little city. I am hoping he will receive my subliminal messages and continue his dubious yet fabulous stimulus packages. Just a small donation of say … $2K would get me that Thai shopping expedition I’ve been needing!
I had a long awaited vehicular epiphany on Sunday when my 11 year old car decided to conk out in a rather embarrassing refuelling/dead battery incident. I had to finally admit to myself that one day I might actually have to say goodbye to my little silver rice bubble.
To add to the humiliation of not being able to start my little tin can – the ageing sticky tape holding in my right front indicator was hanging dangerously low. I have to say it really is hard to feel glamorous while driving around with your indicator flapping in the wind!
Much higher up on the glam stakes was the recent Masquerade Charity Ball at Rydges, raising $5,000 for local charity Mid Coast Care. Guests arrived on the red carpet to enjoy canapés and paparazzi shots followed by a live performance from Nathan Brown and his gorgeous girls from Dynasty Dance Studio.
Guests dined on an elegant banquet table adorned with tea lights and golden candelabra. Two delicious courses and lots of lovely Cassegrain wine later, guests including David and Trish Relf, Mark Wilson and the team from Holden, Jane Howland, Lisa and Drew Briscoe, were all up on the dance floor getting down to duo the Jesters.
Items including the Heath Ledger Archibald Prize winning print drew some fabulous bids, with a private dance performance reaching a staggering bid of $3,000!
The night also served as a farewell for the lovely Jo Love who has left the position of manager of Mid Coast Care to return to boutique recruitment agency Men At Work with long time friend Chandra Armstrong. I am sure the girls will continue the fabulous work they do. A welcome must also go to John Parer, the new Manager of Mid Coast Care, who is already doing a stellar job!
The circus came to town with a FABULOUS performance at the Glasshouse in late August. The crowd, including myself, literally sat in awe and hysterics as the dynamic troupe wove a wonderful web of illusion, comedy and acrobatics. The night sponsored by Focus was a huge success, with the Glasshouse team receiving rave reviews for nabbing such a fantastic show.
The cast seemed to enjoy themselves as much as we did, kicking on with a few local vinos at the after party with sponsors and guests. To pick a favourite from the cast would almost be impossible – the strong woman and her hideously harsh bed of nails, the cheeky little ballerina or the batty bride/event coordinator ‘Tiffany’. Overall, the entire cast were an absolute hoot – a show not to miss!
Red carpet seems to be the accessory de jour, with the recent Tourism Awards adding another jewel to the social crown. The theme was ‘A Night at the Oscars’, with guests arriving to a swarm of paparazzi on the red carpet and Focus TV presenters quizzing guests with fashion and award nomination titbits. Canapés and bubbles did follow, with awards being presented in the main Glasshouse Theatre.
Port Macquarie again came away with a swag of awards to include: The Observatory – Hall of Fame in Deluxe Accommodation, Macquarie Waters – Winner Deluxe Accommodation, The Corner – Winner Restaurant and Catering, Telegraph Retreat – Winner Hosted Accommodation and a Distinction to Rydges Port Macquarie for Meetings and Business Tourism.
The night was an excellent excuse to frock up, with Nicole Marzan and Belinda Novicky putting on a fabulous show for tourism operators in the North Coast Region. Congratulations to all involved!
The Journey of Flavour is on the rise, with the second successful networking trade night being held in the CWA waterfront function rooms at the end of August. Over 90 guests were in attendance, including restaurateurs, waiters, chefs, brewers, wine makers, producers and farmers of fine local produce.
This eclectic group of foodies got together to celebrate all that is delicious and local. This movement promotes the concept of eat, support and shop locally, endorsing business who grow, create or serve fabulous local produce. Guests dined on canapés developed by SilverSpoon Catering utilising a selection of local yummies, including cheese from Comboyne Culture, preserves and jams from The Other Chef and Company Farm, fresh local oysters, Yarras Olives, Hastings cheeses and Lorne Valley Macadamias. Guests also enjoyed a selection of local wines, including Cassegrain and Douglas Vale with, of course, a little help from the Wicked Elf!
As I sign off this month, I am gearing up for a long awaited gals’ weekend in Sydney town. A well trained team of dedicated retail and party enthusiasts are booked in for PINK’s Funhouse concert, followed by a serious session of retail therapy (with a precision focus on footwear and accessories!)
I can see that this week will drag hideously, as I dream of one of the largest Westfield Shopping Centres in existence! Ruddles, any update on that stimulus payment? Happy to accept cash, credit or direct deposit!
Fashion has never been so deadly. You think that I would actually learn something and realise that we are in the middle of a bitterly cold winter here! Instead, I have succeeded in giving myself a case of near pneumonia, by giving my little black dress two outings in the one week in sub zero temperatures! Seasonally challenged! Not me! I fear the next event will be the death of me and instead, I will have to invest in a little black doona and a killer pair of trackies!
Honestly, there is nothing less attractive than nearly coughing up a lung!
Well, what a lively little month it has been. Jetsetting up and down the coast, welcoming theatrical performers to our city, attending awards ceremonies and happy snapping at food and wine events. Life is cold but truly good … and extremely busy! The Glasshouse, of course has been the headlining act in recent months with the first show ‘Taming the Shrew’ drawing out local theatre buffs. The all girl cast certainly turned the traditional Shakespearean performance on its head, with a humorous and provocative depiction of the taming of the head strong Kate, AKA, the Shrew! Congrats to the hard working team behind the scenes who pulled the night off without a hitch.
The crowds continue to flow to this cultural hub, with a 300 strong crowd of expectant art lovers enjoying the official opening of the gallery in mid July. Lots of bubbles and delicious cheeses kicked off this long awaited evening. An indigenous dance troupe gave the guests a private performance, filling the gallery with the haunting sounds of the didgeridoo. This fabulous space was literally bursting at the seams, with hundreds of people there to celebrate and enjoy the eclectic mix of local artworks. The lead exhibition curated by Liz Gilroy included striking black and white photographs taken by the late Thomas Dick of the indigenous people in the greater Port Macquarie region from the early 1900s. Congrats to all involved – certainly a future hotspot for all culture vultures!
Central West Community College (CWCC) recently celebrated the opening of their new premises in Short St. Port Macquarie. Seventy guests were on hand to celebrate, with Senior Business Development Manager Graham Draffin and their new team. Kathy Pearce & Rob Moorehead gathered a stellar corporate crowd, including Rob Oakeshott and Peter Besseling for a great night of SilverSpoon Canapés and Cassegrain Wines. Manager Kathy, Rob and the team will be offering training, apprenticeship and recruitment services to businesses in the Hastings. Congratulations and good luck!
Paul Eammes recently threw a surprise birthday bash for his beautiful wife Leanne, with a party at the Observatory Apartments. Guests including Suzie Bell, Kristen Crossingham, Georgina Bowland, Jackie Faddy, Kylie Cross and Nola Woodall were all on hand with their men to party on with the birthday girl. Drinks and nibbles at the Observatory were followed by many more drinks and dancing at Finnians Irish Tavern. The slightly wacky but very funky band got everyone in the party mood, with the birthday girl being stolen for a few dubious and wine infused tangos with my hubby! Thankfully Leanne survived to dance another day! Happy Birthday Ms Eammes – a super fit, glam mum of three who probably wasn’t up to her marathon-running self the following day! Cheers!
Westpac recently held an exclusive client event at their branch, celebrating the return of their Bank Manager role at a local level. Bank Manager Kelly Lamb hosted a ninety guest event to celebrate this renewed local focus for valued clients of both the branch and the business sector. Bronwyn Smart, the State Risk Manager and Steve Hannan, the General Manager for Commercial and Agri-business were also on hand to celebrate enjoying SilverSpoon Canapés and Cassegrain wines. Congratulations to Kelly and the Westpac team for a wonderful evening.
Marijke Walker of J&H Tours recently celebrated a very special birthday at Rydges Port Macquarie, with a Spanish twist. Guests enjoyed traditional Sangria and tapas followed by a Spanish buffet designed by Head Chef Mick Schubert. Marijke’s friends and family travelled from interstate and the UK to be a part of the festivities. Marijke opened the night with a Flamenco performance, setting the scene for the spicy Spanish celebration! Happy birthday Marijke!
The opening of the Ross Family Studio was another exciting event for the Glasshouse, with family and friends of the Ross Family enjoying a sneak preview and private performance in this wonderful space. Helen prepared a fabulous display of local dance and musical talent for her guests to enjoy including an ensemble piece from daughter Katherine, hot off the plane from Bollywood.
Guests then joined the family for a private dinner at Rydges in the waterfront function rooms. Guests, including Candice Rose, Bronwyn Jameson, Gordon McKirdy, Elizabeth Polson-Galloway, Mandy Miller, and Robyn and Mike Birrell enjoyed fabulous food, lots of the local vino and a rather delicious birthday cake in honour of John Ross’ birthday.
Guests really got into this dual celebration and the Scottish family heritage, with a surprise performance from Andrew Roach on the bagpipes! Yes folks – the stories are true – this man really can play! I was convinced his lively rendition was going to inspire John to break into a highland fling! Happy birthday, John! Congratulations to the entire Ross family for their generosity and support of the cultural community. A fabulous night full of fun and friends!
Life is full of crazy little surprises – some naughty and some nice, or a lovely combination of the two! August is set to bring more of the same, with tourism awards, charity balls, farewells and birthdays in the mix! In between all the hype you really can’t beat a glass of bubbles with the gals, a boogie, and catch up.
‘Til next month!