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2016 Echuca Nationals

Most of us met at Verdun and left just after 8 am heading to Tailem Bend. After a fuel and comfort stop the Saints and Rob Denholm (with Peter Chaplin) joined us and we all headed towards Pinnaroo for Morning Tea. However after a slight hiccup with the McDonald’s car (spark plug issue) a slightly bigger problem with fuel problems with the Tripodi’s car. Alan and Colleen and Mark and Margy stayed with Bev and Joe while the rest travelled on to Ouyen for a running board lunch break.

Then it was on to Swan Hill with some stopping at a local winery while others checked in at the motel and relaxed with a Happy Hour. Around 7 pm it was off to Peter & Lynda Ninnis’ home for a lovely BBQ tea where the Boundys and Paisleys followed by the Tripodis, Seidels and McDonalds all arrived safe and well. Peter & Lynda was thanked and Lynda was presented with a gift then it was time to go back to the motel for the night.

After a good night’s sleep and a relaxing breakfast where decisions were made to travel on to Echuca, it was off to Echuca around 10 am. Some stopped and visited the Lake Boga Museum and the rest headed off for lunch and shopping in Echuca.

Around 2 pm it was off to Moama to check in, unpack and time to relax and enjoy the surrounding. What a lovely place to stay. The units were great, a private river front faced all the units, a family of kookaburras entertained us, also magpies, possums and ducks – what more could you ask for. A big thank you to Deb and Steve for organising this venue.

Then it was time to go to the Registration venue (Echuca Primary School) where we caught up with other entrants and Joe and Neva from Canada and Bob & Margaret Woodford from New Zealand. A lovely rally bag was given out to everyone and the Ladies Bag was well received by all. Back to the motel where some stayed home and had pizzas for tea while the rest headed to the Moama Bowling Club for the evening.

Saturday was time for judging and the Show and Shine. There were 18 cars for Concours and only 16 judges. Over breakfast it was decided to split into 2 groups and cover the judging that way. It worked well and we were done by 11.30.

The Ladies lunch on a paddle steamer went in 2 groups on two paddle steamers. I went with Margy, Jacqui, Gail and Judy on the second group on the PS Canberra and it was a lovely 2 hour trip with sandwiches and scones for lunch. Some of the others went on the first paddle steamer where Jeanne won a voucher.

By the time we arrived back to the cars half had left so we travelled back to the unit getting petrol on the way. Most of us went to the Moama RSL Club for tea that night.

Sunday it was back to the Primary School for a group gathering before heading off to Lockington for the lunch stop where we were entertained by a 3 piece group called The Healers – they made you feel better - who were very, very good. It was hard not to want to dance.

Here was a museum of many things and was interesting to all. After a delicious lunch of soup, sandwiches and cake it was time to travel back to Echuca and get ready for the Presentation Dinner at Radcliffe’s Restaurant. This was a lovely venue for a dinner which originally was a Holden workshop. Tables had been pre-booked by everyone, which was a good idea and worked well.

After a few problems with the PA, which unfortunately continued sometimes during the evening, meals were served, speeches made and presentation of awards given out.

The Presidents from Queensland and New South Wales gave a short speech then it was the SA President Graham’s turn and to announce the dates and venue for the 2018 event which was approved by most.

It will be 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th of May 2018 in the Riverland town of Renmark.

Monday was back to the restaurant for the Farewell Breakfast. Those who remained in Echuca for the extra days took advantage of a tour of the Port of Echuca, the local Holden Museum and checking the shops of Echuca for souvenirs and other shopping. That night everyone did their own thing for tea.

Tuesday was a drive to Rochester for Morning Tea and a look at Alan’s Lincoln Lodge, then a further drive to Toolleen for lunch in the Ancient Tin Shed. The drive home to Echuca went via Chinaman’s Bend. That night some of us went to a Thai restaurant others did their own thing.

Wednesday was packing up and on our way home. After a couple of minor hiccups with coils on a couple of cars we travelled to Murrayville and stayed the night there. The rooms were small but cosy and the evening meal went down well. After chit chat and relaxation it was time for bed.

Thursday saw us all leave early and travelled without incident to Tailem Bend where we said goodbyes and all went our separate ways home.

Those that travelled to the Nationals were:-

Alan & Colleen McDonald, Grant & Rosie Stuart, Chris & Gail Wakefield, Wayne & Rene Boulton, Ian & Carol Bay, Gary & Anne Fatchen, Mark & Margy Seidel, Steve & Deb Harris, Peter & Sue Kelly, Joe & Bev Tripodi, Peter & Corrine Saint, Rob Denholm with Peter Chaplin, Peter & Dawn Honson, Geoff & Jeanne Boundy, Simon & Jacqui Tonkin with the boys, Brian Thebus & Jo, Will & Judy Paisley, Graham & Val Wight and Graham and myself.


Quite a few photos have been taken at the Nationals.

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