Freestone celebrates 50 years
NEARLY 100 indoor bowls fans turned up at the Freestone Memorial Hall on Saturday to celebrate the 50th birthday of the Freestone Indoor Bowls Club.
Bowlers from clubs in Warwick and from across the region gathered at the hall for lunch and to reminisce about indoor bowls triumphs and tribulations from the past.
The club’s first president, Keith Robertson, was in attendance and recalled collecting the first proper set of bowling mats from Helidon and driving them up to Freestone “on the roof of a car”.
Many of the founding members of the club have since passed away, with the club officially formed on September 4, 1961.
Nineteen members signed up on that occasion, with the records showing the founding patron was councillor W Palmer and secretary-treasurer Marty Mulkerrin.
Featuring prominently in the list of founding members are some of the best-known Freestone names, including a good representation of Ryans, Christensens, Kadows and Shelleys.
Teams from other clubs were invited to the official opening of competition on September 26, 1961, with 90 people attending – 64 of them bowlers, having been asked to bring their own mats and bowls.
Current secretary Val Bridge said trophies had always been generously donated by club members, such as the Kadow Trophy, donated by that family in 1971, with a trophy for “target” bowls donated by current patron Vince Phelan in 1964.
“BP and its representative Mr H Drysdale donated the Drysdale Shield in 1973, which is still played for annually and is currently held by the Laurel Bank Club from Toowoomba,” Mrs Bridge said.
“Our membership has fluctuated over the years, from anywhere up to 40 members, and at the moment it stands at 17.
“We just enjoy the game, both the competitive aspect but it’s also the social contact with other members and clubs.”
New members are always welcome.
The Freestone Indoor Bowls Club meets for competition and a cuppa every Tuesday night at 7.30pm at the Freestone Memorial Hall on Freestone Rd.
Contact Val Bridge for more information on 4661 2373.