Elvis is well and truly in the building!
I must admit that probably along with the rest of the Parkes community, I hesitated in sharing the news that the Parkes Elvis Festival was proceeding this week, in the midst of the circumstances that much of our country is facing.
It has been heartbreaking to see the devastation caused by the fires over the past month and anyone in our area that has not had to directly experience the devastation, are sure to have the same appreciation. We may have experienced some pretty heavy smoke, but this is a small inconvenience compared to much of the State.
We are still in the midst of drought, even though there are a few places that have received some minimal rain over the past week. Obviously, seeing other Landcarer’s across the State on social media, suffering losses to both property, animals and livelihoods has made me think about celebration and even having fun when so many have suffered losses.
Locally, we all know that the forecast for rain and a change in conditions is not what we would hope and given that Parkes, Forbes and surrounding smaller communities rely on the income from the Parkes Elvis Festival and the thousands of visitors that boost the economy of these towns, I know that our friends across the State would understand the need to proceed and hopefully enjoy our social media and stories from the week.
Parkes Shire Council launched a bush fire fundraising appeal that is running during the Parkes Elvis Festival until Monday, 13 January with all funds raised going directly to the Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery to coordinate the disaster relief effort.
Obviously with the equipment, transport and training required to respond in a disaster situation, these funds will be well received.
As with any disaster situation, once the initial response is over, there are the going to be major impacts on communities, that can’t be seen with the naked eye that these services will be dealing with for months and years to come and we are so grateful for their commitment.
To all of our friends that read our columns from further afield than the local level, please know that we are all thinking of you and hoping that we can visit and assist your communities to help you get back on your feet.