Blue Mountains News
Red Balloon Ball supports RFS
Blue Mountains Rural Fire Service will soon have two new electronic message boards, thanks to a generous turnout to the annual Blue Mountains, Lithgow & Oberon Tourism (BMLOT) Red Balloon Ball on Friday [April 20].
Held at the stunningly refurbished Fairmont Resort, Leura, more than $22,700 was raised through a Pick-a-Box raffle draw and a live auction with prizes including high teas, a mountain bike, restaurant dinners, overnight stays and luxury items donated by tourism operators throughout the Blue Mountains, Lithgow and Oberon region.
The ball was organised by BMLOT vice chairman and Bygone Beautys owner Maurice Cooper, who first initiated the event to support the RFS and its volunteers three years ago after the devastating bushfires in Victoria.
This year’s event set a new record of $22,780 raised, which will go towards two electronic message boards to provide safety, warning and education messages to the public. Last year’s fundraiser paid for a 24-seater bus to transport local crews.
BMLOT chairman Randall Walker said: ``When you live and work in a destination such as the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, fire is a very real threat.
``We’re very proud that Blue Mountains, Lithgow and Oberon Tourism has chosen as its only not-for-profit organisation that we regularly support on an annual basis, the Rural Fire Service.’’
Mr Walker said the importance of supporting the volunteer organisation was highlighted last year when bushfires licked at the doorstep of Scenic World and Lilianfels.
``In a karmic sense, the more you spend to night the better fire protection you will get going into the future,’’ he said.
As well as the generosity of those who dug deep to donate and bid for prizes, Mr Walker thanked major sponsors the Fairmont Resort and The Carrington Hotel, Katoomba, the Giggin’ Diggers army band which provided entertainment, Wolgan Valley Resort, Bygone Beautys and Springwood High School Quilt Show.
As well as many of the region’s top tourism industry leaders and operators, the event was attended by Blue Mountains Mayor Daniel Myles, Blue Mountains State Liberal MP Roza Sage, Macquarie Federal Liberal MP Louise Markus, Blue Mountains RFS Superintendant acting manager David Hoadley and Gundungurra Tribal Council representatives.
This article archived 23 May 2012
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