On Tuesday 10 December, Woollahra’s beautiful Chiswick Garden was once again covered in picnic rugs and filled with young families enjoying this annual local event. Not even the smoky atmosphere earlier in the day could dampen the enthusiasm and excitement of the many children who were eagerly queuing to have their faces painted or have a go on the jumping castles while their parents sipped on a chardonnay. The fabulous team from Chiswick co-sponsored our event by keeping the barbeque well primed and churning out their delicious sausages and buns. Woollahra Council once again generously supported our evening, as did the other major sponsors, Chiswick Restaurant, Di Jones Realty and local gemologist and fine jewellery designer, Matthew Ely.
Throughout the evening we were treated to some spirited carols singing beginning with some of the younger members of the community, the delightful children from Woollahra Public School. Following on from this choir was local resident, Gavin McDonough, solo singer and acoustic guitarist along with musical accompaniment from his group who together created a wonderful vibe.
To ensure that the event flowed smoothly, Giles Edmonds, Vice-President of QSWWA, held the mike and was a most effective MC. And of course there was Santa distributing gifts and posing with children for photos.
We were fortunate to have an official welcome from a valued member of our community, Luise Elsing, who is a councillor from Cooper Ward. Her enthusiasm and ongoing support of our organisation are much appreciated.
The three face painters were kept constantly busy and the two jumping castles attracted long queues for the entire evening. A new addition to the children’s entertainment this year was an initiative by Matthew Ely, who created a series of piñatas in the shape of gemstones and filled with sweet treats. The team from Di Jones Realty distributed balloons, cupcakes and bottled water, which proved to be most popular.
What sets this event apart from so many others is the way in which the community comes together to participate and enjoy. With the help of local businesses, we were able to create several substantial hampers comprising of gifts and vouchers for lunches and dinners, beauty products and services, medical care and fashion. We are most grateful to these businesses for their generous donation of goods. Furthermore, Matthew Ely donated five jewellery vouchers that were also raffled.
It is indeed a privilege to celebrate our community carols in a location as magnificent as Chiswick Garden.Alan Smith, Treasurer QSWWA