July school holidays program

Button tree artwork in progress

Button tree artwork in progress

Come along for fun art sessions at the inaugural Fryerstown School holiday program.  Enjoy exploring a variety of mediums and creating your own masterpieces.  “These workshops are suitable for primary school aged children” says organiser, Denise Button, “and we invite people to attend one or both sessions.”

The first week participants will create a Button Tree artwork.  This is a sensory activity with soft felt, vintage papers and brightly coloured buttons glued to canvas. 

The second week participants will create an Animal Kingdom artwork on canvas.  Both sessions include story times while art works dry. 

Refreshments will be available for accompanying adults to purchase and enjoy in the peaceful Fryerstown School environs.

Session times are: Thursday 4th July and Wednesday 10th July from 10.30am-12 noon.  Cost is $15 per session which includes all materials.  Bookings are essential and can be made online at www.trybooking.com/DBZX.  For more information  phone 0413 563404 or email FryerstownSchool@gmail.com

June update

Throughout June our visitors have taken advantage of the wonderful warmth generated  by our wood heater.  We saw the Growing Abundance team run an olive processing workshop, and the Castlemaine State Festival held a patrons and donors afternoon tea, which morphed into a 97th birthday celebration for the festival founder, Berek Segan.

Mid-month we held the community Winter Warmers event which brought locals, old and new, together to share hearty soups, wonderful entertainment and a tipple or two.  Friday evenings from 5.30pm is a chance for people to come together to have a yarn about the week that was, perhaps enjoy a ‘slow’ game or two, and have a social drink (BYO).  All are welcome to attend but please check the website first in case of last-minute changes.

L-R: Graeme, Helen and Joy enjoy Winter Warmers

L-R: Graeme, Helen and Joy enjoy Winter Warmers

We are also planning a community lunch on the last Sunday of every month, commencing in July.  Details will be advised closer to the time.  This is a good opportunity to invite people to join our email list so that you are kept up to date of all our happenings.  You can sign up to receive our newsletter via our website or by sending us an email.

We have taken delivery of our gallery hanging system and are particularly delighted that their first use was a pop-up exhibition by notable local artists Robert Maclaurin, Catherine Pilgrim and David Frazer.

Robert Maclaurin, Catherine Pilgrim and David Frazer exhibition

Robert Maclaurin, Catherine Pilgrim and David Frazer exhibition

And in breaking news – we are delighted to announce that the Fryerstown School will be the venue for the Mount Alexander Shire Arts Forum to be held on Thursday 15th August as part of Art Fields, which is a month-long showcase of art works produced by Mount Alexander-based artists.  Art Fields will include visual art, performance, literature, film, music, performance nights and weekend artist’s talks.

This beautiful and peaceful facility is available for your enjoyment.  To arrange an inspection phone Denise Button on 0413 563404 or email FryerstownSchool@gmail.com  for more information.

May, media and mmmmmm.

During the month of May there have been numerous inspections of the facilities and several events – with more on the horizon.  “We used to bring the kids here on school camp back in the ‘80s” reminisced a former teacher from Lockwood Primary School.  We have had health and wellbeing practitioners visit – with talk of a regular one day a month event for people to rejuvenate their mind and body.  The Growing Abundance team inspected the facilities and have scheduled an olive processing workshop at the school on Saturday 8th June.

017Tim Todhunter, the leader of the school restoration project, celebrated a ‘significant’ birthday with family and friends at the school during May.  Attendees were delighted with a performance by the local Welsh Male Choir, followed by a display of dancing marionette puppets, folk music and storytelling by Marcus and Carolyn of Hunkydory Puppets.

The Mount Alexander Heritage Advisory Committee held a gathering at the school after a tour of historic sites around Fryerstown and Vaughan, and discussed the school restoration over a bowl of hearty soup by the crackling fire.

There was a great turn out to an Emergency Services community event held on the evening of Friday 24 May, with demonstrations by the various service organisations outside, followed by a delicious meal inside.  During the last week the school has been used for a sewing workshop.

The Fryerstown School has been featured in the Castlemaine Mail, the Midland Express and is also in the current Chewton Chat.

We are currently working on the programming of the ‘Winter Warmers’ community event to be held in the middle of June.  It will be a fantastic night where community members and friends can come together for delicious food (mmmmm), wonderful entertainment and warm conversation.

If you would like to arrange an inspection of the school, discuss an event, or hire the beautiful gallery space, phone Denise Button on 0413 563404, email FryerstownSchool@gmail.com or visit www.fryerstownschool.com.au .

Facilities Coordinator Appointed

We are pleased to announce that Denise Button has been appointed to assist in developing and facilitating community activities programming, and to coordinate hire and use of the old Fryerstown School facilities.  Many of you will know Denise who has a professional background in this field and has been heavily involved in many volunteer activities in the region since she came to live here. We welcome her and wish her every success.  I am sure she will appreciate your ongoing ideas, help and support to make the old school ‘hum’.  Denise can be contacted on 0413 563404 or by emailing FryerstownSchool@gmail.com.
Denise says, “I’m excited to be involved in exploring and developing appropriate uses for the old Fryerstown School. It is a unique building in a unique location which is steeped in history.  It has such potential to become a great space to bring people together for social, educational and artistic pursuits and I have been passionate about this since I moved here 12 years ago.”

We had two outstanding final applicants for the position which made it a difficult decision for the team, including Ron Moore as an independent Chairman. We are extremely fortunate to have such talented people who have passion for Fryerstown and for building our community.

2010 Funding media release

$216,000 Makeover for Fryerstown Community Reserve

20 October 2010

As a sign of the Victorian Government’s strong support for small towns, Regional and Rural Development Minister today announced $162,000 from the Sustainable Small Towns program to provide vital upgrades to the reserve, including:

  • Upgrades to kitchens and facilities;
  • Heating and under floor insulation;
  • Solar hot water and grey water recycling;
  • External amenities building; and
  • Internal and external refurbishments.

The $54,000 balance of the project will be supported by contributions from the Fryerstown School Committee of Management, Mount Alexander Shire Council and local community fundraising.

The Government supports small towns so that they can remain sustainable, liveable and vibrant, and the community is making an incredible contribution to this project.

The project will involve restoring and refurbishing the historic Fryerstown Old School House which opened in 1915, to provide a functional building to use as a community hub. This will provide local residents and visitors with a meeting place for recreational activities such as art studies and exercise groups and the grounds will provide space for a community garden.

The $162,000 will be sourced from RDV’s Infrastructure Development Fund which includes $50 million for the Sustainable Small Towns program.  The program builds on the work of Regional Development Victoria’s Sustainable Small Towns Development Fund by helping Victoria’s smaller towns create jobs, drive economic growth and improve community infrastructure.

Other initiatives include boosting tourism, supporting greater access to tertiary education opportunities, and more money to build job-creating infrastructure in regional Victoria.

The Fryerstown Community Reserve will be a more vibrant community hub thanks to this $216,000 revitalisation.