Saturday, January 14, 2017

BBQ in the park - January 11th , 2017. Report and photos by Ursula Beatty

It has become a club tradition to begin the new year with a BBQ in the park, near our usual venue, off discovery drive, Helensvale. This year, we didn't need to worry about the threat of rain as another  very hot and humid day was forecast. Fortunately for us, a high cloud cover, made it very comfortable to be out in the open for the duration of our meeting. The cloud lifted as we were leaving to allow the typical  hot  and steamy gold coast summer sunshine to shine through.

Nick O Donnell was the head BBQ chef and Paul Kirkland assisting chef. Nick even brought along his own portable BBQ with gas bottle! Just as well, it turned out, as one of the park's electric hot plates was out of order. A huge thanks to Nick and Paul for organising and cooking the food. Thanks to Nicole for providing the free range eggs from her own backyard chooks and to Julie Anne for providing the very attractive, delectable fresh food salad.

Despite his busy chef role, Nick our Sergeant at arms, managed to start the meeting at 7am sharp.  

Toastmaster Paul Kirkland introduced
the theme for the meeting:  
New years resolutions/goals


Emma Bloem presents her prepared speech: "Inspired by a giant"

Nicole Kelly evaluates Emma's speech

Matasha Nuss evaluates Sarafina's Speech

Hannah Castellijn and
Ian Garvie present their 1 min Table Topic or impromptu speech.

Today's table topics were provided by Ursula. Each participant selected a  book (related to the theme) from the bag, and presented a mini impromptu speech on that topic.

The meeting was fun and varied. There was time to eat breakfast, hear what top 2 goals each person has for the year. Plus, we got to  enjoy  2 wonderful prepared speeches with  speech evaluations;
7 table topics, a listening master (Ian Garvie) who tested our listening skills towards the end of the meeting by asking "who said what?"

We finished the meeting at 8am much to the surprise of Marty who was impressed that we can pack so much into a one hour meeting.

Well done to all who came along and participated including Guests: Jutta Clough and Grace (Julie Anne's daughter) and Visitor Marty Haynes, President of Tamborine Mt Toastmasters club.

Note: For more photos of members in action, see the Gallery pages of this website.

Full Moon Christmas Party – December 14th 2016. Report by Ursula Beatty

As our early morning meetings are so short (one hour) and structured, it’s nice to have a more relaxed gathering to mix and mingle with members and guests. That is exactly what this years Christmas party provided.
Held at a very different venue to previous years, in the Nerang hinterland, overlooking the entire Gold Coast. Our wonderful hosts for the evening were club President, Christine and her husband Murray.
What a fabulous view we were treated to on this clear and balmy summer’s evening. Witnessing the full moon (a beautiful large pink ball) rising above the ocean was a highlight for me. And later, the entire coastal strip was lit up like a Christmas tree. Sorry: No photos to share unfortunately. The club’s unofficial  photographer was off duty!

It was more casual too and family friendly.  A nice opportunity to get to know or catch up with members , meet their partners and some of their children: Bailey, Jordan, Naomi and Saffron. And of course Christine and Murray's  much loved, four legged boys, Pugzie and Emo.

Everyone brought a plate of food to share. There were some interesting dishes. Nick who is a keen Pizza maker as well as a brewer, made a chocolate Pizza for dessert. Sounded weird but it did taste quite good.

Paul Kirkland and Nick O Donnell were presented with their Competent communicator (CC) awards, after recently completing their 10th toastmasters speeches. Congratulations to both of them. 
Jutta Clough, a former member, was honoured for her dedicated service to the club over the course of her 11+ year membership, which included mentoring numerous new members and serving as Vice President Education and Secretary.
I particularly enjoyed the 'table topics' later in the evening - sitting around the dining table discussing  some very interesting and lively topics.
Something else I appreciated or liked about this party:  our hosts provided proper plates and cutlery, thus saving on disposable landfill items.  A special thank you to Murray for doing the washing up too.
All in all, a very successful and enjoyable evening. Thank again to our hosts Christine and Murray and to everyone who attended.