It has been a very busy few weeks in the Shire, and I am hoping that this can be a ‘positive pause’ before heading into the hectic Christmas season.

Well done to all the committee members who planned and organised the ‘Back to the ‘Bri’ festival on Saturday of the October Long Weekend.

It was a fantastic effort by the committee to organise this event in just a few months, and bring everything together for such a wonderful day for the whole community to enjoy.

The day included everything from truck displays, to children’s activities, local stall holders and also local musicians to enjoy as well.

I have heard many positive comments during the past week on what a great example of community spirit and dedication by the event organisers.

This demonstrates how an event such as this can bring a community together, in good and bad times, such as what our Shire is currently experiencing.

Again, congratulations and well done to the ‘Back to the Bri’ organisers, I am looking forward to next year’s event.

Wee Waa certainly knows how to ‘rock’ the drought, with the annual Wee Waa Cotton Capital Country Music Muster that took place over the weekend, with Friday night hosting the 2019 Cotton Cocktail Evening and on Saturday with the live Music event.

The committee members have taken much of the year to co-ordinate fantastic country music artists to perform at the event on Saturday, and the day also included local market and food stalls as well.

But the best part about the entire event – it was a community event raising money for the provision of mental health services within our own community.

My sincere thanks and congratulations to the committee and all Wee Waa residents who assisted during the weekend!

Not to be outshone over the October Long Weekend were the tireless and outstanding efforts of the Narrabri Show Society – horticultural committee, for the hosting of the 2019 Narrabri and District Annual Rose and Flower Show, that was organised by the Show committee members and held at the Narrabri RSL Club.

Although we are well within the grip of a ‘once in a lifetime drought’, the exhibitors and committee members put on another fantastic show for this year, with many growers and floral artists of all ages exhibiting their talents for this year’s Show.

There were plenty of local entrants who performed very well, and the state judges also provided plenty of positive feedback to the organisers and entrants.

It is committee members such as these that the Shire is certainly proud of, who continue their hard work and commitment throughout the entire year, promoting the Shire and its residents as extremely talented, resourceful and creative floral artists and also dedicated to their gardens.

Congratulations to all entrants into the Rose and Flower Show for this year, and a huge thank you to the organising committee for their ongoing commitment, enthusiasm and dedication to keeping this tradition continuing.

I would like to pass on my genuine and heartfelt ‘thank you’ to all members involved.

At the recently held September 2019 Ordinary Council Meeting, the annual election for Deputy Mayor of the Shire was conducted.

The Deputy Mayor’s position was accepted by Councillor Cameron Staines for the coming twelve months, and I am sure that he will be continuing the great work of outgoing Deputy Mayor, Cr Robert Kneale during his past twelve months.

I would like to thank all current Councillors for their dedication, commitment and enthusiasm for the development and progress that has been made with projects within the Shire in the past two years.

The future planning that has also been taking place ‘behind the scenes’ is also a remarkable achievement, and I am sure that the Shire has now been economically set-up for great things to happen in the coming years, let’s hope that the growth and advancements will continue for many years to come, benefitting all residents in the Shire.

It is that time of year when the winter season sports have all been finalised, and a few weeks break until the summer season sports start.

I am sure that I speak on behalf of all community members, parents, grandparents and children of all ages and wish to pass on our sincere thanks to the volunteers and sporting club committee members that give up their weekends (and much of their free time week in week out) that provide residents within our Shire of first class sporting clubs, facilities and achievements by those that choose to play in their selected sports over each season.

Narrabri Shire is the ‘sportiest’ in the State, and it is certainly thanks to coaching, encouragement and support that these volunteers provide to each of their nominated clubs during the year.

The best way we can show our thanks to these volunteers is to simply shake their hand and say ’thank you’ to them – along with the respect that they deserve as trained professionals within their fields, as referees, officials, coaches and committee members. They give up their own time to make sure that you enjoy your time to play sport in our towns.

If you have the time, ask a committee member if they need a hand – you might have the talents they are looking for!

However, please keep supporting your local sporting clubs – summer and winter (and all year round), to keep Narrabri Shire as Australia’s ‘sportiest’.

CR Cathy Redding (Narrabri Shire Council Mayor)