Community carols garner $35,000 aid

Emily AceSouth Western Times

The abrupt end of the long-running Dalyellup Christmas Carol concert last year has inspired the creation of the Dalyellup Community Christmas Festival, which has already received $35,000 of in-kind support.

Resident and event-management student Lisa O’Neill was spurred into action after residents were upset their 10-year tradition had been cancelled.

“I made a few calls to see what I can do to help as part of my event studies and have since been volunteering once a week as an intern at the Shire of Capel’s Community Development team to help bring it back for 2018,” she said.

Ms O’Neill said it would be a community-run event, enlisting the help of sporting clubs, community groups, schools and churches.

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She said she had received an “overwhelming response” with “every Dalyellup group jumping on board to do their bit to make it happen”.

“We have decided to make an afternoon of it starting at 3pm with some have-a-go activities, a huge makers market marquee promoting local artists, live entertainment and fun workshops before the carols start at 5.30pm,” she said.

“We have the Bunbury Volunteer Fire and Rescue on board not only offering to let the kids explore their trucks and shoot some water on the day but also give Santa an awesome ride to the event.”

Ms O’Neill said the biggest surprise was Dalyellup residents Derek and Natalie Peterson from Totally Sound pledging to donate $15,000 worth of support and staff.

“I think I nearly cried when he confirmed that information to me,” she said.

The Shire of Capel has also offered $7000 to pay for marquees, infrastructure and provide rock band Platinum Project to finish the night off with Aussie classics.

Ms O’Neill has also applied for a handful of grants to fund further entertainment and essentials such as insurance.

“Without this kind of support from sponsors, the Shire of Capel and all our community groups, our first community-run event would not be possible,” she said.

The event will take place at Central Lakes Park on December 16.

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