June 28 - July 4, 2015: Issue 220

 Winter Solstice Festival Warms Avalon’s Heart - Sunday June 21st, 2015

 The fruits of our creativity for all to use

 Winter Solstice Festival Warms Avalon’s Heart

By Jayne Denshire

Avalon generated its own winter warmth last Sunday at the first Avalon Winter Solstice Festival. From dawn till dusk, at the beach and around the village, locals came from far and wide to experience what makes Avalon such a special eco-friendly community, marked by so many great moments. 

The idea for the Festival grew out of a ‘Keep New South Wales Beautiful Litter Grant’ awarded to Avalon to beautify the top area of Wickham Lane leading into Dunbar Park. In the days before the Festival, Avalon Palm Beach Business Chamber and Pittwater Community Garden volunteers got stuck into the task, painting and landscaping the entrance to Dunbar Park and purchasing giant chess and checker games for the community to play with. The Festival gave the opportunity to launch the new-look laneway to the local community.

Father and son chess game in Wickham Lane

Highlights from the day included: at Avalon Beach a lone piper piped in the new day aside Boardhenge; music, generously curated by John Stone, cropped up on every street corner; Reverse Garbage ran recycled furniture workshops and lantern making for the kids in Dunbar Park; Astronomy guru Fred Watson drew a large crowd at Bookoccino; The Rolling Fix ran bicycle maintenance workshops and many of the businesses offered winter specials and treats. The day was filled with wall-to-wall fun with something for everyone.

Harpist and singer, so fantastic, outside Smalltown

As the sun set, the community gathered in Dunbar Park with lanterns lit and followed the giant Sun and Moon lanterns around the park. The big finale came in the form of local fire twirlers. 

The Winter Solstice Festival was a wonderful display of the local Avalon community coming together. So many groups and individuals contributed to the success of the day – no better way to show that This Is Avalon. Here’s hoping next year’s event will be bigger and better than ever!

Special thanks to: Living Ocean, Reverse Garbage, The Rolling Fix, Jamestown Project, Chill Bar, Northern Beaches Permaculture, Enliven Pittwater, Boomerang Bags & Friends of Soibada, Billy Bragg, Ros Marsh … the list goes on, so thanks to one and all.

Some pictures from the day:

 Making recycled furniture with Reverse Garbage

 Fabulous  A capella singers

 Up close and personal with local animals

 The final result! Surfbaord tables and milk crate stools for the community to use. Thanks Reverse Garbage

 Lovely decorated lanterns

 A wonderful finish to a great community day for Avalon – the lantern parade around Dunbar Park