Georgetown gets set to party

Georgetown gets set to party

Events
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Georgetown residents "love a party" and they have plenty to celebrate this month.

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RESIDENTS of the Mid North town of Georgetown "like a party", according to local farmer and Community Development Association member David Hodgson.

"We're pretty renowned for having a good party through the years," he said.

There is plenty of reason to celebrate this month with the town reaching its sesquicentennial - marking 150 years since the town was formed.

Georgetown has a "proud history", according to local and 150-year celebration committee member John Crawford.

The town land, on Ngadjuni country, was originally part of Bundaleer Station.

It was first surveyed as a town in 1869 and thought to be named after early settler George Fisher.

"It was known for its treeless plains, so people didn't have to clear it," John Crawford said.

Similar to Colonel William Light's plan for Adelaide, Georgetown was also designed on a grid, surrounded by parklands, which housed the golf course, old racecourse and cricket oval.

Today, these parklands are cropped by the Community Development Association, with the proceeds from the grain put towards community projects and local sporting clubs.

In the past, as well as cropping, the region was home to three Merino studs, two British breed sheep studs, two cattle studs and two Clydesdale studs.

To mark the occasion of 150 years, Georgetown is hosting a weekend-long event, starting with the Sesquicentennial Soiree, including live music and a grazing table, on Saturday, March 30.

John Crawford said the event was a shift from previous celebrations, "catering for the young ones - those under 70" and was about looking forward as well as back.

Activities on the following day will be an ecumenical service followed by the launch of an addendum to The Families of Georgetown SA book, written by John and Helen Fogerty.

The original book was launched at the 140-year celebrations, with this addition to mark events of the past 10 years as well as some other details that have come to light since the first edition was published.

The day will also be an opportunity for present and former Georgetown residents to share their memories of the town, with six speakers organised, ranging in age from 93 to 11 years old.

John Crawford said there were plenty of traditions that may resurface that weekend, with one stretching back to the days of the old Rural Youth dances, which were a major part of the community, even helping raise funds for the town's first ambulance.

"In those days the pubs closed early and the dances weren't licensed so each town had a road where people would congregate - our spot was out near the cemetary," he said.

"The last time we had a ball, licensed this time, a few of us went out of town to have a reminiscing drink."

Georgetown has continued to embrace its history, with the general store marking 100 years in 2013 and still set up largely as it was in the early days.

The CDA will also share memorabilia collected during the years, including past pennants of the football club and uniforms from the two schools in the region - now closed.

John said their goal was to create a low-cost event to give all those connected to the town the chance to take part in the celebrations.

  • Details: Buy tickets to the Sesquicentennial Soiree by contacting Nat Hodgson at nhodgson@bigpond.com. RSVP to the Sunday event by March 15 to jjcrawford@activ8.net.au. Find out more by searching "Georgetown 150 years" on Facebook.
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