CHRISTMAS EVENT: Picnic in the Park moves into town
PLANS for this year's Picnic in the Park are well under way, with the free community event being held at a new location.
The popular Christmas Day lunch will move to Memorial Hall, 1-5 Main St, Pialba, after being held at the Hervey Bay Botanic Gardens for more than a decade.
Organiser Janet Newman said after 11 years of unwavering support from the Hervey Bay RSL, it was only fitting the event was named after them.
"A key thing for this year is we've changed the venue and the name," Mrs Newman said.
"Last year it was Picnic in the Gardens, as it was at the Botanic Gardens, this year it's Hervey Bay RSL Picnic in the Park as it's at Freedom Park and the biggest source of funding is the Hervey Bay RSL.
"We've received community grants from the RSL from day one - so 11 years."
Mrs Newman said with the funding and generosity of the Fraser Lions Club and Fraser Coast Regional Council, she was able to cater for up to 300 guests.
"The lunch is still two cold meats - which is ham and chicken, three salads, fruit platters beforehand and Christmas cake with custard for dessert," she said.
"I ordered 38 chickens and Golden Chicken cut them up into eighths for us - which is 300 pieces, 15kg of sliced ham and loads and loads of salads."
She said the lunch was also an opportunity for newcomers to Hervey Bay and those living alone to socialise.
"We've had nothing but positive feedback," Mrs Newman said.
"We have a donation bucket and we always get donations because people are so appreciative of the event.
"It's just an opportunity for people to come together."
While it's not compulsory to register to attend the Hervey Bay RSL Picnic in the Park, Mrs Newman said doing so helped with catering.
To register, visit Fraser Coast Regional Council, Bayside Christian Church and Uniting Church.
Volunteers are encouraged to submit the registration form by December 7.
Forms can be found at frasercoast.qld.gov.au/volunteers