A Moama couple are looking forward to their eighth Murray Meander this weekend.ASHLEA KUNOWSKI February 20, 2013 4:10am
A Moama couple will this weekend compete in the annual Murray Meander for the eighth time, as the event moves into the middle leg of the three year circuit.
Simon and Ellie Bourke have taken part in the event since it began in 2006 and will make the eight-day trek to Mildura this weekend.
The charity event raises funds for Bendigo’s Otis Foundation which provides free retreat accommodation for breast cancer patients and provides funding for the Prostate Cancer Foundation Australia’s oncology nursing scholarships.
Mrs Bourke said the fundraiser was personal, as people close to the family had been affected by cancer.
‘‘We’ve had a few friends of ours have breast cancer and Simon’s father had prostate cancer,’’ she said.
Having participated in the Meander for almost a decade, the Bourke’s say the event has become a big part of their family.
Mrs Bourke said their youngest son, Patrick, had taken part in six out of the total eight event legs.
‘‘It’s been a great experience for him,’’ she said.
‘‘So much to learn out on the river and people skills.’’
The Bourke family has celebrated milestone birthdays over the course of the Meander.
Two years ago, eldest son Jack celebrated his 21st and Simon turned 50.
‘‘It was great, we had a fantastic time,’’ she said.
Mrs Bourke said her family’s participation in the event had been a great experience.
‘‘We’ve enjoyed it, we’ve met lots of fantastic people,’’ she said.
She said the pair looked forward to seeing how this year’s Echuca to Mildura leg will have changed.
‘‘It will be interesting to see what the river will be like this time,’’ she said.
‘‘One year we did this leg and (the river) was extremely low — we had to get out and push.’’
Mrs Bourke said the pair did not plan on stopping any time soon.
‘‘There was always a good reason to do the next one,’’ she said.
This year the Bourke’s will take friends, Angela and Jim Walsh, down the Murray with them for the first time.
Event co-ordinator Dick Phillips said the Bourke family were one of only two families to have taken part in every event.
‘‘The good thing with them is they’ve brought new people into the team most years,’’ he said.
Although team numbers were down this year, with 34 entries, Mr Phillips said the event has drawn entries from places in the state it had not before.
‘‘(There’s) a real cross-section of people,’’ he said.
Crews will set off from the Echuca East boat ramp from noon this Saturday, with boats are expected to arrive in Mildura before 3pm next Saturday.
The Better Local Government Association has applauded Greater Shepparton City Council’s decision not to apply for an increase on the 2.5 per cent rate cap set by the Victorian Government.
Yarrawonga/Mulwala's largest ever professional golf event, the Shepparton BMW Senior Victorian Open, got underway today with 124 players hitting off from 8am to 1pm on Yarrawonga's Black Bull Golf Course at Silverwoods.
Tatura’s rainfall for the last three months of 2015, 116.6mm, was marginally down on the long-term average for the same period, 120.8mm.
MEDDLING mothers can cause plenty of grief when you’re young, especially when they get involved in your love life.
THE second annual Christmas town party in Lockington did not quite attract the crowd organisers were hoping for, but it failed to dampen their spirit.
Special supplement in this weeks edition
For Tocumwal’s Lynda Snowden, working the land hasn’t stopped her from falling in love with the majestic surrounds of her day to day life.
TOOLLEEN Recreation Reserve Committee of Management presented three awards on Australia Day in front of 80 local residents.
The NSW Government has recommended the Old Cobram Barooga Bridge be placed on the State Heritage register.
Deniliquin doctor Marion Magee says she is disgusted with the treatment of local nurses.
Federal Member for Murray Sharman Stone has been criticised by two Victorian MPs for suggesting the Federal Government should stop spending money on the $2 billion irrigation modernisation program until problems are sorted out.
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