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Big Day Tops Off A Big Effort

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Looking at the crowd, Ration Shed chairperson Aunty Sandra Morgan had good reason to feel pleased

May 18, 2016

Surveying the faces in Cherbourg’s Memorial Park on Sunday morning, Ration Shed chairperson Aunty Sandra Morgan summed up the success of the 2016 Reconciliation Fun Run: “Seeing you all here makes all the hard effort worthwhile!”

The third annual Reconciliation Fun Run, which is a fundraiser for the Ration Shed as well as an effort to build bridges, have fun and get fit – had a record number of registrations this year.

Organising committee member Robyn Hofmeyr said more than 450 runners had been registered.

“It was a wonderful day and we have received really great feedback,” she said.

The run started in a fog-bound Murgon Showgrounds at 8:00am on Sunday.

Ration Shed Museum management committee member Bevan Costello launched the day with a Welcome To Country and prayer.

Three guest athletes, ex-NRL player Petero Civoniceva and track athletes Larissa Chambers and Shannon McCann, then led the runners through a series of warm-up exercises.

As usual, the youngest runners surged off the starting line first.

However, this year – for the first time – it was an adult who crossed the finish line first: Nanango runner Andrew Cross.

Andrew, who won the 2014 Kingaroy Of The Mountain footrace in Nanango, was over the moon afterwards.

It was the first time he had taken part in the Cherbourg fun run, but it won’t be his last.

“It’s a really great run,” he told, “It’s a great day and I’ll be back next year.”

Cherbourg mayor Arnold Murray agreed the day had been very good.

“It’s getting bigger and bigger every year,” he said.

Cr Kathy Duff, who is the Indigenous Portfolio holder on the South Burnett Regional Council, has taken part every year.

This year she convinced recently elected mayor Keith Campbell to also take part for the first time. She boasted that she overtook him on “heartbreak hill” to beat him home by a metre.

(Later in the day, Cr Duff backed up to walk from Crawford to Kingaroy in the ‘Walk With Lynda’ …)

After all the stragglers had been marked off, entertainment continued in the park opposite The Ration Shed.

There was dancing, live music by Muddy Flats, face painting and children’s games, a sausage sizzle and market stalls.

In the Yidding Artists studio, artist Venus Rabbitt held a painting workshop for children.

Robyn Hofmeyr said the Director-General of the Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships, Clare O’Connor, had taken part in the day and had been very impressed.

“The organising committee are extremely happy,” Robyn said.

Creative Tracks, a music and digital arts group that works with young people, sent a big crew to cover the Reconciliation Fun Run ... Miss Gertrude and Fotu were videoing the foggy start at Murgon

Who'll be first? The eager runners charge out of the fog at the starting line at Murgon Showground

SBRC Indigenous portfolio holder Cr Kathy Duff with Ration Shed Museum management committee member Bevan Costello

Track stars Larissa Chambers and Shannon McCann with Cherbourg Council Economic Development Manager Sean Nicholson

First across the line was Andrew Cross, from Nanango (Photo: Ration Shed)

Traditional dancers performed after the race ...

... the Wakka Wakka dancers are always popular

Two new mayors ... Mayor Keith Campbell (SBRC) and Mayor Arnold Murray (Cherbourg) were both elected at the recent Local Government polls

4UM USMob broadcast live from the Finish Line for the first time ... from left, Harold "Big Chance" Chapman, guest interviewee Fred Cobbo and station manager Jeanette Brown

Working hard at the sausage sizzle were South Burnett CTC "Connections" staff members Kerry Cotter, Sabastian Fisher, Elizabeth Kennell and Shaun Bliesner

Almost time to relax ... run organising committee members Robyn Hofmeyr, Aunty Sandra Morgan and Zona Hussey-Smith could take a breather after all the runners were home

* * *


The winners were announced and congratulated by the guest athletes ... Petero Civoniceva (ex-NRL), hurdler Shannon McCann and runner Larissa Chambers

2014 Nanango "King of the Mountain" race winner Andrew Cross received prizes for first across the line and the first male runner

First female runner was triathlete Brandi Alberts, from Hervey Bay, who will be competing in Spain at the end of the month

Orlyn Fisher, from Cherbourg, won the Secondary Boys prize

Latoya Murray, from Wondai, won the Secondary Girls prize

Michael Fisher, from Cherbourg, won the Primary Boys prize

Christie Watson, from Cherbourg, won the Primary Girls prize

Winners of the Best Dressed prize were Sara Barnes and Britany Lane, from Kingaroy

Laurie Douglas, from Cherbourg, won the Male Senior category

Lynne Skinner, from Kingaroy, won the Female Senior category

Go Getta Girls running group won the Best Dressed Team prize

Oldest Registered Entrant was Angela Clarke, 76, Kingaroy; youngest was Stephanie Harwood (<1)

A special prize was awarded to the Bowie family who drove down from Cairns to take part in the run

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