ANZAC DAY: Bargara Dawn Service. Jm Bates, Nancy Halbesma, Cooper Croft and Georgia Croft .
ANZAC DAY: Bargara Dawn Service. Jm Bates, Nancy Halbesma, Cooper Croft and Georgia Croft . mike knott

Call to arms as Anzac Day funds drop

IN TWO weeks more than 8000 people from all walks of life, including 2000 diggers, will gather on Bargara's shoreline to commemorate those who have served our country.

The Anzac Day dawn service is the biggest event on Bargara's calendar, one that has attracted 12,000 people in the past, and comes at an estimated cost of $20,000.

The morning is run by Bargara Remembers Incorporated and organised by Division 5 councillor Greg Barnes.

Cr Barnes said for 23 years he'd been a part of the ceremony that had attracted people from all over Australia, but this year had been the toughest yet to raise funds.

He said normally there would be about $10,000 in the kitty after the event, but this year the funds would be dried up.

"Next year we won't have any cash on hand,” he said.

"I just think people are being careful with their money.

"And we have struggled to find donations.

"This event attracts a broad range of people, from elderly to children and everyone in between.”

Palm Lakes has jumped on board with a $5000 donation to make sure the event can go ahead this year.

The event is so popular Cr Barnes said people from all over Australia would turn up to watch the sunrise over the ocean as the Snifter Mustang plane flew past.

He said the ambience of the morning was definitely a draw card.

He also said 800-900 barbecue meals were also provided.

Cr Barnes is hoping smaller Bargara businesses who may see a benefit from the early morning crowds to jump on board and offer support.

"There is always bumper to bumper traffic along Bargara Rd for people coming out for the morning,” Cr Barnes said.

"People from Bundaberg even stay in accommodation at Bargara the night before to avoid the traffic.”

He said the struggle was a sign of the times and the lesson learnt was for the committee to tackle fundraising earlier.

For more information on the service go to www.bargaraanzac.com.au.