History of the Southern Bowls Social Club
The Near North Coast Bowlers Social Club was formed in 1964-65 by bowlers from Melbourne holidaying in the Cotton Tree Caravan Park at Maroochydore and was continued as that until 1971-72 when the name was changed to the Southern bowls Social Club because the New Zealanders were welcomed into the Club.
The first meeting held in 1964, the President being Dr G Campbell from Queenscliff Bowls Club and the Secretary was Mr S Rose from Mornington. Twenty-two were present and another 21 joined the next day. The numbers grew, reaching 400 in just two years. As players could not play together, teams went to different clubs. Games were played at Maleny, Montville, Mapleton, Perigean, Gympie and Maroochydore Beach over four to five days a week.
In 1968 a trophy was presented by Mr Ryan to the Club to be played for between the Southerners and Maroochydore Beach Club over a number of years. In 1980 another trophy donated be Fred and Edna Hutchins from Rotorua to be played for by the New Zealand Bowlers against the Australians.
The Social Club dinner was held every year at end of season where up to 400 people were entertained. This function was held in many places for several years.
In the first few years a meeting plus a game of Bowls were held in Pakenham in February. Members kept in touch during the summer months.
Over the years interesting days were had playing at Bramble Bay, Deception Bay and Sandgate in Brisbane, travelling by bus. Interesting days were also held at Gympie of which the Southerners still participate today.
This is a unique type of Club where people come and enjoy a good game of bowls and fellowship. Even in 2018 the Club continues to go strongly with 73 playing on one day. Our home these days is Nambour Bowling Club where we play Tuesdays and Fridays.
The history of this club is surviving with loyal members and a dedicated committee who give up hours of their holiday time making this Club what it is, a group of people from all walks of life from many states all here to enjoy a game of bowls, make new friends and enjoy the fellowship in this unique club that opens in June and closes in August.
Compiled by Annette Kirby – Secretary
History supplied by Malcolm Barker- former President