Norwood Junior Football Club Life Member Luncheon

Norwood Football Club is located at Mullum Reserve off Mullum Mullum Road in Ringwood and is one of Maroondah’s larger football clubs. Norwood has a particular emphasis on junior teams and fields the largest junior side in Maroondah and the second largest within the Eastern Football League (EFL).

This afternoon the Norwood Football Club held its Annual Life Members Luncheon to acknowledge its business sponsorship and the many people that donate their time, through coaching, committees and volunteering to assist the club in its activities.

The Luncheon also confirmed a new Life Member in addition to recognising the ongoing commitment that the many volunteers and members provide to the club. Norwood Football Club is a Division One Club within the EFL and requires ongoing commitments from members both on and off the field.

The Life Members Luncheon provided an opportunity to recognise the ongoing commitment of the many volunteers involved in the Norwood Football Club.

Media Release: Celebrating National Reconciliation Week

Maroondah recognised National Reconciliation Week celebrations with a special event held at Maroondah Federation Estate on Wednesday 27 May.

Councillor Alex Makin said it was pleasing to see such a broad cross-section of the community in attendance.

“It was wonderful to see so many school students coming together with Indigenous elders, the indigenous community, local Reconciliation groups and members of the general public to celebrate National Reconciliation Week at Maroondah Federation Estate,” Cr Makin said.

“One of the highlights of the day was the launch of Council’s Reconciliation Policy Statement, which outlines four key areas of its commitment to the local Indigenous community,” Cr Makin said.

“Council is now looking forward to working in conjunction with residents and relevant organisations over the next four years to deliver on the strategies and actions outlined in the statement,” Cr Makin said.

“As expected, the One Fire Aboriginal Dance Troupe put on a great show and participants were entertained by Uncle Larry Walsh’s captivating storytelling,” Cr Makin said.

“We were fortunate to miss the rain and witness a traditional Smoking Ceremony and a Welcome to Country message delivered by Wurundjeri/Wandoon elder Tony Garvey-Wandin,” Cr Makin said.

“Local primary and secondary school students joined together to work with Indigenous elders, artists and members of the One Fire Aboriginal Dance Troupe in various workshops including clap stick making, storytelling, basket coiling and Aboriginal dance/didgeridoo playing,” Cr Makin said.

If you would like a copy of Council’s Reconciliation Policy Statement, please contact Council’s Arts and Cultural Services Team on 1300 882 233.

National Reconciliation Week 2009

National Reconciliation Week is held between the 27th of May and the 3rd of June to celebrate indigenous culture and to advance the cause of reconciliation.

These dates were chosen to coincide with the 1967 Referendum, which removed discriminatory clauses from the Australian Constitution and the anniversary of the Mabo decision which was declared on the 3rd of June 1992. The Mabo decision was decided by the High Court of Australia and reversed the concept of terra nullius hence recognising that indigenous Australians had a system of law prior to European settlement.

This morning I had the honour of being able to officiate Maroondah’s Reconciliation Week event which was held at Maroondah Federation Estate.

This year Maroondah organised a series of workshops providing school students and the community with the opportunity to learn about indigenous culture, including storytelling, basket coiling, art and dance.

The theme for Reconciliation Week 2009 is Reconciliation: Turning Words into Action and this was displayed in the foyer of the Maroondah Art Gallery through collaborative artwork undertaken by students from the Monkami Centre and Kalinda Primary School in conjunction with indigenous artists.

Alex at the 2009 Maroondah Reconciliation Week proceedings

This theme is further reinforced through the launch of Maroondah’s Reconciliation Policy, which focuses on partnerships and council initiatives to improve equity for Indigenous Australians.

A traditional smoking ceremony, which cleanses the presence of bad spirits, accompanied the Welcome to Country and the event concluded with a performance by the internationally renowned One Fire Aboriginal Dance Troupe.

Please continue reading to view a copy of the speech delivered for Maroondah’s 2009 Reconciliation Week proceedings.

Continue reading “National Reconciliation Week 2009”

Ringwood Historical Society – discussing Maroondah's environmental history

Tonight’s Ringwood Historical Society meeting focused on the environmental and natural history of Maroondah, with presenters from Maroondah Bushlinks and the Friends of Mullum Mullum Valley.

Maroondah Bushlinks is an umbrella organisation that represents the bushcare groups located within Maroondah. The group provides a combined voice for the many volunteers that are involved in caring for Maroondah’s bush reserves.

One of those reserves is Warrien Reserve, which is a 5.26 ha bush reserve located in Warrien Road Croydon. The reserve was acquired by the then Shire of Lillydale in 1948 and has been overseen by a committee of management since 1959.

Additions to the reserve have been acquired throughout the past fifty years including recent additions by the City of Maroondah in 2007.
The committee and volunteers work to enhance the bush reserve through planting indigenous flora and removing weeds.

The Friends of Mullum Mullum Valley was formed in 1991 to preserve the natural flora and fauna of the 22km Mullum Mullum Valley. The Mullum Mullum is significant as it the only creek within metropolitan Melbourne that still retains its natural environment for most of its length.

While the true meaning of the name Mullum Mullum has not been documented the name is derived from Woiwurrung language, which was spoken by the Wurundjeri and is thought to mean “place of many big birds”.

Alternatively it is also suggested that the name was a mistranslation of Ballum Ballum a Wurundjeri expression that means “place of many butterflies”.

The name recognises the importance of the Mullum Mullum for the Wurundjeri people who utilised the Valley as a food source within the remnant bushland.

The Mullum Mullum has four distinct sections and passes through the municipalities of Maroondah, Whitehorse and Manningham before joining the Yarra River. The Friends of Mullum Mullum have been active in protecting the Valley and formed the Community of Ringwood Indigenous Species and Plant Nursery (otherwise known as CRISP) in 1992 to provide a source of native plants to assist in revegetation.

CRISP is now an independent incorporated association based at the former City of Ringwood depot in Greenwood Avenue, Ringwood and provides plants that are indigenous to the local Ringwood area.

The Friends of Mullum Mullum Valley’s efforts have been successfully protecting and improving the remnant bushland throughout the Creek and Valley. As a result the numbers of indigenous flora and fauna has increased, with the the Mullum Mullum Creek providing habitat for the highest density of platypus in the whole of the Yarra River catchment.

The presentations this evening reinforced the environmental value within Ringwood and its surrounds and demonstrates the need to preserve our natural environment.

Maroondah Journal: Zoned for a meeting of creative minds

The Maroondah Journal has reported on ArtZone, a Maroondah initiative that aims to connect local art within the community.

“Initially ArtZone will provide an artist register and e-newsletter, but there is a lot of scope to develop the network into something more substantial if demand is there.”

ArtZone will provide relevant information such as local arts news, concerts, exhibitions, theatre productions, grant information, employment and local artist profiles.

Furthermore participants that register by the 23rd of June will be able to assist council in formulating plans for the future direction of ArtZone

Cr Alex Makin said input was “important to the development of arts in Maroondah”. “Maroondah boasts a diverse and lively arts scene, so there are a number of individuals and groups out there who would benefit from what ArtZone has to offer.

To register for ArtZone please visit

Great Ryrie Primary – Drawing Competition Presentation

This morning I was invited to the school assembly of Great Ryrie in Heathmont to announce the results of the community wellbeing plan drawing competition.

Maroondah is currently developing its Community Wellbeing Plan and the drawing competition was designed to encourage feedback from primary school students.

Like Croydon Hills Primary, Great Ryrie was another of the four schools that chose to participate in the competition. The assembly was conducted by school students and it was great to hear about the many initiatives the students and the school are undertaking.

All participants in the competition received a certificate and a prize to commend the work undertaken by the students.

Picnic in the Park – McAlpin Reserve

Maroondah’s Picnic in the Park is a council initiated program designed to reconnect residents with their nearby parks and reserves.

McAlpin Reserve, accessible from Wonga Road and Tortice Drive in Ringwood North, is one of Ringwood North’s largest reserves and includes a variety of play equipment and walking trails.

McAlpin Reserve recently received upgraded play equipment catering to a mixture of ages and further landscaping works, including additional shelter will be completed shortly.

The sunshine combined with a council barbecue helped attract a large number of attendees and it was great to see all of the Mullum Ward Councillors in attendance.

McAlpin Reserve, was named after the McAlpin family. James McAlpin moved to Ringwood in 1895 with his wife and three sons and started an orchard covering both sides of the road.

James McAlpin’s oldest son, James Bell McAlpin was heavily involved in local affairs, including the Ringwood Horticultural Society and started a real estate firm in 1907. James Bell McAlpin was elected onto the Shire of Lillydale in 1908 representing Ringwood the south-west riding until he chose not to stand for re-election in 1917.

James Bell McAlpin campaigned for the separation of Ringwood from the Shire of Lillydale and served as President of the Ringwood Progress League between 1920 and 1924.

James Bell McAlpin was elected onto the newly formed Ringwood Borough Council in 1924, which he retained until resigning due to health reasons in 1929.

The land that is now known as McAlpin Reserve was donated by the McAlpin Family and named in recognition of this gift and their commitment to Ringwood.

Today McAlpin Reserve is one of Maroondah’s larger parks and provides a range of activities for families and residents of Ringwood North.

Eastern Transport Coalition – the bus network and transport inquiries

Tonight’s Eastern Transport Coalition meeting included a presentation from the Bus Association of Victoria outlining the increasing patronage experienced on Melbourne’s bus routes.

It is of little surprise that the more frequent routes have attracted higher patronage, with Melbourne’s SmartBus routes experiencing ongoing and strong growth. For example, the Ringwood to Frankston SmartBus (route 901) has experienced rapid patronage growth, as has route 903 from Mordialloc to Altona. These improvements result in reducing the number of cars on our roads, mitigating traffic congestion and greenhouse emissions, while also improving social inclusion.

The SmartBus network demonstrates how Melbourne’s bus routes should operate and there is a dire need for further improvements across the bus network.

The current bus review process for Maroondah, Knox and the Yarra Ranges will identify required improvements and it is imperative that these findings are funded and implemented.

The State Government must follow through with the funding required to implement the bus service reviews and help deliver a sustainable and inclusive transport system.

It is in this regard that the Eastern Transport Coalition is calling on Members of Parliament to initiate an Inquiry into Melbourne’s public transport system.

While the Victorian Legislative Council has resolved to undertake an inquiry into the factors leading to and causes of failures in the provision of metropolitan and V/Line train services, there is a need for a broader inquiry examining Melbourne’s entire public transport system.

A broader inquiry would explore the disconnect that exists between Melbourne’s public transport modes and investigate the systemic failures in delivering a public transport system that would promote transport choice through being competitive with private vehicle travel.

The Eastern Transport Coalition will be issuing a letter to local Members of Parliament requesting their support for this inquiry.

The redevelopment of Ringwood Station, accessibility improvements and more frequent and readily services are among the priorities for the Eastern Transport Coalition and will be included within this letter.

Media Release: Arts network links creative minds

Maroondah artists, art organisations, venues and service providers are encouraged to support a new initiative linking the local arts community.

ArtZone will comprise an arts register and e-newsletter to help connect artists, share ideas, resources and information.

Ongoing registration is available, however, people who join ArtZone by Tuesday 23 June will have an opportunity to have their say on the direction of the initiative.

“Your input is important to the development of arts in Maroondah and that’s why we’re encouraging all creative minds to get involved,” Councillor Alex Makin said.

“Maroondah boasts a diverse and lively arts scene, so there are a number of individuals and groups out there who would benefit from what ArtZone has to offer,” Cr Makin said.

“Initially ArtZone will provide an artist register and e-newsletter, but there is a lot of scope to develop the network into something more substantial if demand is there,” Cr Makin said.

To be involved in this exciting new program simply fill out a registration form available at Council service centres, libraries, community houses and online at

For more information email Council’s Arts Planning and Policy Officer Leanne Wilkinson at

Ringwood Bowls Club 2009 AGM

This evening the Ringwood Bowls Club, located in Loughnan Road Ringwood, held its Annual General Meeting to elect its committee for the following year.

The Club, which was founded in 1928 has had a long association with Ringwood. In recent years the Club developed a strong emphasis on sustainability and has invested in water tanks and a reclamation facility to reduce its water consumption.

The Club is now planning to examine its two grass greens with plans to potentially convert them to other grass types to further reduce their water usage.

The club is complementing its environmental sustainability focus with community initiatives to increase participation in lawn bowls.

The Ringwood Bowls Club will be launching a Friday social bowls program and is working with other organisations, such as Eastern Volunteers, to encourage volunteer participation.

With an ongoing emphasis on environmental and social sustainability the Ringwood Bowls Club will continue to have a successful future and I congratulate the board and its members for their vision and dedication.

For further information on the Ringwood Bowls Club please visit