Parramatta community diary

LAND OF EXTREMES: Meteorologist Richard Whitaker will talk about droughts and flooding rains at the next meeting of the Parramatta and District Historical Society.
LAND OF EXTREMES: Meteorologist Richard Whitaker will talk about droughts and flooding rains at the next meeting of the Parramatta and District Historical Society.
  • Entries for this diary from community groups and non-profit organisations need to reach us nine days before anticipated publication. Because of space restrictions, there is no guarantee that entries will run. Email to alison.adams@fairfaxmedia.com.au.

VIRTUAL MAGIC: Parramatta Park will become an exciting digital fantasy land for children and families to explore when aliens land in Domain Creek Playground until July 17 as part of a special Magical Parks activation. Created by Geo AR Games it’s an innovative new concept that combines outdoor play with virtual reality. Using a smartphone or tablet and the Magical Park app, children experience a blended virtual world seen through the app once they enter the boundaries of the magical park. Children will have to save blinkers (who resemble one-eyed-one-horned-giant-purple-people-eaters) which are trapped in cages, before the munching monsters (think Slimer from Ghostbusters) gets to them. For more information, visit parrapark.com.au.

WEATHER TALK: Parramatta and District Historical Society members will meet on Wednesday, July 19 from 7.30pm at Burnside Public School Hall, 1 Masons Drive, (off Pennant Hills Road) North Parramatta. Guest speaker will be Richard Whitaker on “Droughts and flooding rains since 1788”.  Mr Whitaker spent 30 years with the Bureau of Meteorology and is now the chief meteorologist on The Weather Channel. He is partly credited with the initial development of precipitation charts for the Australian mass media. He has also written several books about weather and historical topics and has a particular interest in natural disasters. The talk is free and will be followed by supper. Details: Ilma McKee, 9874 6607.

FLYING THE FLAG: PFLAG, the support group for parents, family and friends of lesbian and gay children will meet on Saturday, July 22 from 2pm at Wesley Lodge Motel, 175 Hawkesbury Road, Westmead. Off-street parking is available. Details: Judy, 0439 466 125, email info@pflagaustralia.org.au or visit the website pflagaustralia.org.au.

HOME PROJECTS: Learn to tackle your own DIY projects with experts this month as part of the Bunnings Warehouse North Parramatta and Rydalmere’s adult DIY workshops. Held every Saturday and Sunday at 11am, 12.30pm and 2pm, the free workshops will arm you with all the necessary top tips, ideas and confidence to complete your own home and garden projects. Topics include: painting and plastering on July 15 and 16; windows and doors on July 22 and 23; and flooring on July 29 and 30. Children also have the chance to get creative and learn DIY skills at free workshops, held in-store every Saturday and Sunday. Details: bunnings.com.au.

VIEW CLUB: Parramatta branch meets the first Wednesday of each month at Parramatta RSL Club from 10.30am. There is lunch and a guest speaker. Details: Judy, 9635 4191 or Rosemary 8897 4934.

ACTIVE RETIREES: Probus Club of Prospect welcomes retired or semi-retired residents who would like to keep active and meet a happy group of men and women, as well as join in day trips and coffee mornings. Meetings are held at Toongabbie Sports and Bowling Club, 12 Station Street, Toongabbie at 10am on the third Thursday of the month. There is usually a guest speaker. Details: Joan, 9631 4595 or email joanbirtles@bigpond.com

GET CREATIVE: Holroyd Art and Craft Society holds classes in the community centre, Miller Street, Merrylands, including pottery, jewellery, china painting and painting with watercolour, acrylics and oils. Fees are $22 per year for society membership and $5 per lesson. Details: Shirley, 9636 3743 or email holroydartncraft@optusnet.com.au or visit the website holroydartncraft.com.

JOIN PROBUS: Active retirees and semi-retirees who would like to share friendship, fellowship and fun are welcome to join the Probus Men’s Club of Carlingford. The club meets from 9.45am on the first Tuesday of the month at Muirfield Golf Club. Activities include an impressive line-up of guest speakers and monthly outings with wives/partners. Guests and friends are welcome. Details: Colin, 9629 9634.

LEISURE AND LEARNING: A group for senior citizens meets on Friday mornings from 9.30am at the Uniting Church Pennant Hills, corner Boundary Road and Bellamy Street, Pennant Hills. Activities include art, Australian history, bridge, cards, carpet bowls, gentle exercise and music appreciation. Cost is $25 per school term with morning tea provided. Details: Arthur Baillie, 9484 4372.

COTTAGE TOURS: One of Australia's oldest colonial sites is now open to the public with Parramatta Park Trust launching monthly guided tours of the Dairy and Rangers Cottages on the second Saturday of each month at 11am and noon. The next one is March 11. The tours offer a glimpse into the nation’s oldest buildings, the newly conserved Dairy and Rangers Cottages. Built in 1796, the Dairy Cottage was home to George Salter, an ex-convict turned cattleman. It was later converted into a Government Dairy by Governor Macquarie in the early 1800s. Its sunken milk-processing room can still be seen today under the adjacent Ranger's Cottage. Highlights of the tour include: interpretive displays recreating the life of dairy workers in the 1800s; audio visual history of Parramatta Park and the Dairy precinct; artefact exhibits; and newly restored 19th century cottage gardens and soundscapes. Tours cost $8 and are available to purchase through Eventbrite. Details: parrapark.com.au

BUSH MUSIC CLUB: Holds folk social dances on the first Saturday of the month, 7.30pm-11.30pm, at Beecroft Community Hall, near the railway station. Dances are relaxing and affordable and ‘called’ with various bands. Families are welcome. Light supper and surprises provided. Details: bushmusic.org.au or phone Sigrid, 9980 7077 or Wilma, 9489 5594.

RECYCLE, REPAIR: The Bower’s Repair Cafe is now open at 1/10 Hunter Street, Parramatta.  The Bower has a range of experts on hand to help you repair broken items such as computers, bikes, electric appliances or furniture. Tools and materials are provided and all that is required is your participation and a small donation. The Repair Cafe operates the last Saturday of each month from 10am-noon. The Bower also takes the Repair Café on the road to community centres and halls, working in conjunction with local councils as a free service for residents. The Bower is an environmental charity committed to reducing waste going to landfill. The shopfronts sell furniture, appliances, household goods, salvaged building materials, bikes, books and more. Details: 9568 6280 or bower.org.au.

BUSH REGENERATION: Conservation Volunteers Australia are busy restoring Prospect Creek. It’s a chance to learn about native flora and fauna, meet a great group of people and help the environment. Every Monday 8.30am -2:30pm. Details: 4721 4625 or westernsydney@cva.org.au.

GREEN THUMBS: Pennant Hills Garden Club meets on the fourth Wednesday of each month from 10.15am at Pennant Hills Bowling Club, 52 Yarra Road, Pennant Hills. Guest speakers, trading table, garden visits and outings. Details: Louise, 9484 5008.

LEARN TAI CHI: Try a free introductory class at Merrylands or Baulkham Hills. Bookings essential. Details: 9686 2282 or 0421 282 833.