Lost in the Bush anniversary a celebration for region: West Wimmera Mayor Ron Hawkins

CELEBRATION: West Wimmera Shire will host a Found Day Picnic and Commemoration Ceremony on August 20 at Mitre as part of the Lost in the Bush 150th anniversary. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

CELEBRATION: West Wimmera Shire will host a Found Day Picnic and Commemoration Ceremony on August 20 at Mitre as part of the Lost in the Bush 150th anniversary. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

WEST Wimmera Shire Mayor Ron Hawkins believes the Lost in the Bush 150th anniversary will be a celebration for the whole region.

West Wimmera Shire Council, Horsham Rural City Council and Barengi Gadjin Land Council have joined forces to commemorate the story of Isaac, Jane and Frank - aged nine, seven and nearly three - who became lost on Friday, August 12, 1864, for nine days.

The children were found with the help of Aboriginal trackers.

West Wimmera Shire will host the Found Day Picnic and Commemoration Ceremony on August 20.

The ceremony will be the culmination of the nine-day celebrations, which start on August 12.

Cr Hawkins said the day would include a picnic, children's activities and a plaque unveiling.

"This is the main event for the celebrations," he said.

"We have 250 school children coming from Edenhope, Kaniva, Goroke and Natimuk.

"We are inviting the public at large."

Barengi Gadjin Land Council will perform a smoking ceremony at the event.

Cr Hawkins said Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Council board member Tim Chatfield would unveil the 150th anniversary plaque, which would be an addition to the existing monument.

Children's activities include learning an Aboriginal dance, making bush brooms, art and learning about Aboriginal tracker skills that were used to find the children.

Activities will be from 10am with a barbecue lunch from 12.30pm, followed by the plaque unveiling.

Cr Hawkins said it was great so many different groups were involved in the celebrations.

"All the groups have been very involved in the process and people are coming forward very enthusiastically," he said.

"It's wonderful. We all have a common purpose. It's a celebration for the whole region."

Cr Hawkins is also the event organising committee chairman.

He said he was glad West Wimmera Shire was involved.

"We are absolutely thrilled to host the main day," he said.

The Found Day will be at Jane Duff Memorial Park at Mitre.

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