From the President’s Desk
I would like to wish all members and associates a MERRY CHRISTMAS and to provide you with a brief summary of events that have taken place in 2015.
We commenced the year with the New Vessel Selection Committee coming to a decision and making a recommendation to the VMRW Management Committee, after a long and thorough process the vessel chosen was a Noosa Cat 4400 Series. A long consultation process was entered into before the contract was signed later in the year, work has progressed significantly and we hope that the vessel will be finished around the end of the first quarter next year.
Significant changes were made by our secretary Roger Wodson to the paper work and procedures on board VMR1 to assist us in being compliant and recouping cost involved in activations. The membership fee structure was updated and also an 8 hour free tow limit was introduced.
At the AGM there were a few changes with Tom Manning and John Fearnley being elected to the Management committee and Bill Harrison and Alan Winch being elected to the Marine Club Committee.
Roger Wodson had spent an extensive amount of time redrafting the VMRW Constitution and only a few items did not pass at the meeting.
On the operational side Mal Priday spent some time negotiating with MSQ (Marine Safety Queensland) regarding the maintenance of the repeater stations with a great result where MSQ replaced batteries and agreed to carry out the required maintenance.
Gary Nicol has been appointed VMR1 maintenance person and has been very proactive in maintaining our vessel and introducing systems to keep it compliant. We have added a new smart phone and GoPro to VMR1 and have introduced a rule where all persons must be wearing a life jacket when the vessel departs the berth.
A small party of VMRW members attended the Mackay 50th anniversary which was well represented by other VMR squadrons and emergency services, unfortunately we could not attend a SAREX at Cape Upstart due the weather conditions.
The Sunday Music day has been postponed due to the work being carried out at the boat ramp/VMR base and hopefully it will be restarted next year depending on availability of musicians.
I would like to recognise all the sponsors and donors that have helped us out in so many ways from help in buying equipment, repairs and raffle prizes. In particular I would like to single out the Rotary Club of Airlie Beach, Whitsunday Lions Club, Abell Point Marina, Hawkes Boatyard, Fish D’Vine, Whitsunday Ocean Services and the Airlie Beach Hotel, without whose help we would not be as financially sound.
I would especially like to thank Tom Manning for all the time he has spent obtaining grants to buy equipment and also for being our representative, traveling to Noosa Cat, dealing with the boat builder and marine surveyor.
With all the works going on at the boat ramp and around our clubhouse we will certainly have a premise to be proud off and I would like to thank the Whitsunday Regional Council and their contractors for their contribution.
This month, our new skippers, Gary and Craig, had the opportunity to “Captain” VMR1 on a couple of activations.
To read their and other reports click HERE or on the “Activations” tab above.
A bit of Christmas Fun
You may have noticed some white spots drifting down on your screen. Don’t worry, there is nothing wrong, and there is no need to adjust your set. It’s SNOW! Yes, it does snow in the Whitsundays!
OK, for those of us who have kids or grandkids (or great grandkids!), here is the official Santa Tracking website, where you will be able to see EXACTLY where Santa is on Christmas Eve while he is delivering toys to all the good children.
While you are waiting for Christmas Eve, the site has some fun stuff to do, so jump on soon and have a look around.
Of course, this time of year can be really stressful. You’ve been wandering around the shopping centre, trying desperately to find the perfect gift for Auntie Maude, and you decide to join the crowd in the food hall for a bit of lunch. You finally find a place to sit, and then this happens.
A bit of a reminder of what Christmas is really all about.
And just to finish off, an Aussie take on Jingle Bells.
Back to the newsletter!
Sponsors & Supporters
Local support for VMR Whitsunday’s new Rescue boat
Wilmar Sugar has provided a grant for VMR Whitsundays to purchase anchoring equipment and 2 steering compasses for our new rescue boat, currently under construction.
This support is most sincerely appreciated by VMR Whitsunday, for without corporate sponsors such as Wilmar Sugar VMR Whitsunday would find it very difficult, if not impossible, to operate.
It is also highly appreciated that Kenny Nicoll of AB Marine in Abell Point Marina provided the anchoring equipment at cost.
This ensures that we are able to stretch our funding further, ensuring we can provide the best possible service to the local boating community.
More Local support for VMR Whitsunday’s new Rescue boat
In the last edition of the Samson Post, we thanked the Macrossan & Amiet Charitable Foundation for their second donation to VMR’s safety equipment.
We have used some of the funds to purchase 6 new Stormy Seas Inflatable Life Jackets from Whitsunday Ocean Services.
As they have kindly done before, Whitsunday Ocean Services also provided the life jackets at cost.
Again, we at the VMR are extremely grateful for the support we receive from the local businesses, large and small, who all help us to provide the service we do.
A sincere Thank You to all of you.
VMR Whitsunday would like to thank the many organisations for their continued support by placing our collection tin on their shop counter.
This month we collected the tin from Quadrant Marine (Colin and Kerrie Bell) and it contained $137.80!
The money collected in these these tins makes a significant contribution to the operation of our rescue vessel VMR1 and our radio base. Many thanks also to the Whitsunday community who help to fill these tins.
And let’s not forget these organisations that help with sausages, bread rolls and prizes for the VMR Blues Days.
Update on Marine Club surroundings
Whitsunday Marine Club, located adjacent to the Whisper Bay boat ramp is jointly owned by VMR and the Whitsunday Game Fish Club. Over the years the lawns and surrounding rocks have suffered due to settlement and washing away in the lawn areas and gradual slippage of some rock areas into the muddy sea bed.
We are grateful to Whitsunday Regional Council for providing repairs to the rock surrounds and lawn areas in conjunction with their Whisper Bay Boat Ramp project.
All upper rock walls have been rebuilt and improved drainage runoff will ensure that soil is not washed away. In addition turf has been relaid in some areas, a concrete access path and aesthetic fencing have all been completed.
When the boat ramp project has been completed, the upper car park adjacent to the Marine Club building will be sealed, making the Whitsunday Marine Club the Whitsundays’ premier location for weddings meetings and functions.
The latest report of the boat ramp completion is that it the ramp is scheduled to have the official opening on January 27.
In the meantime, here is a short, 52 sec video of work in progress.
Thursday afternoon training has ended for this year due to Christmas break. We will be back at it on January 21.
If you would like to get involved, please contact us.
Monthly Meetings are held on the first Monday of each month.
Starting at 6.15pm, after a BBQ and drinks from the bar, the monthly meeting is held at about 7pm, giving members the opportunity to meet other members and committee member, and a chance to discuss matters of interest.
The BBQ is only $3, and drinks are reasonably priced, so come along and have your say.
Due to the ongoing works at the boat ramp and clubhouse, the VMR Blues sessions continue to be postponed until the work is complete.
At this stage, we hope to be able to host the next one on Sunday, February 7.
Planning is underway to have a VMR Ball on Saturday, March 5.
Please put this date in your diary or note it on your calendar.
Members are encouraged to book tables of 10.
More details to come.
Here are a couple of items of interest for boaties by the Bureau of Meteorology
Notices to mariners
Just a reminder that current notices to mariners for the Whitsunday area are available from the Qld Govt Transport website