WHALES, whales – they’re everywhere around Narooma at the moment.
But not only out to sea as the whale season hits full stride, but also in the grounds of the Narooma Men’s Shed where volunteers are shaping and painting the latest chamber of commerce initiative.
Eight large, wooden Christmas whales have already been completed with several smaller versions also now complete.
Narooma Chamber of Commerce president Orit Karny Winters explained the whales resulted from a brainstorming session with Rob Atkinson of the Men’s Shed about what more could be done to decorate Narooma over the Christmas holidays.
A design competition was put out to Narooma High School art students and Georgia Poyner came up with the winning design of a whale wearing a Christmas hat.
The idea is that Rotary Club members will hit the streets of the Narooma district in September “selling” the whales to local businesses.
Volunteers from Rotary and the Men’s Shed would then install the whales on business roofs and awnings in November for the holiday period.
Ms Karny Winters said she was excited that the Big 4 Holiday Park on the Narooma Flat had already agreed to take two of the whales and she was hopeful other businesses from Dalmeny to the Narooma Plaza would get involved.
The proceeds from the sale or renting of whales would go toward the Men’s Shed and Rotary for projects in the local area.
Focus groups continue
The chamber’s other major initiative at the moment are the “Focus on Narooma” focus groups.
Ms Karny Winters said congratulations were in order for the participants of the first focus group, which finished off last Wednesday night.
“And now a big welcome to members of focus group 2, which kicks off this week for another six weeks,” she said.
The first focus group’s members workshopped the beginnings of a “Community Values” statement on their last night ready for further development from group 2 and feedback from the community at large.
“Value statements purposefully guide the community into the future, they help us make conscious decisions about what we want and don’t want for the town,” participant and Whale Motor Inn owner Matt Deveson said.
Here’s a just a few of the draft value statements the group came up with as a starting point for further discussion:
Youth, our community values… promotion of and respect for youth leadership youth contribution to all aspects of the community quality youth facilities
Education, our community values… education and lifelong-learning learner centred education that leads to meaningful employment
Law Enforcement and Emergency Services, our community values… participation and support for its voluntary emergency services education for safety, health and fire protection feeling secure and practices concern for others
Development, our community values… development that is aligned to community aspirations as identified in the Narooma plan, development that demonstrates balanced scale and low bulk environmental impact, development that fits in with the environment
Economy, our community values… diversified and sustainable economy creation of employment opportunities and successful businesses resulting in increasing the average income for the whole community bottom up approach to tourism and economic development
Cultural Diversity and the Arts, our community values… acceptance of difference and embraces cultural diversity which is reflected in encouragement of the arts at a local community level a rich arts culture promotion of art up to a national level through festivals and community events
Health, our community values… opportunities for all ages to actively participate in healthy activities access to quality health care services education and provision for aged and disability care, health related infrastructure, employment and associated industries
If you would like to have input into Focus on Narooma or share some value statements of your own then jump onto the “Focus on Narooma” Facebook page and share your thoughts or contact the chamber president.