Local Hero - Paul Powell

LOCAL HERO’s of WOOLORAMA – 42yrs of Volunteering


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Diana Blacklock, Media
Ph: 0421 631 632, E: media@woolorama.com.au


Paul Powell - Ground Controller

Paul’s involvement with the Wagin Woolorama began in 1976 where he worked on the entrance gates until `79. In 1980 he moved to the Merino Section when it was booming and being a sheep enthusiast, he enjoyed the bustling, busy atmosphere of the Merino Sheds

After joining the Wagin Rotary Club in 1986 he became involved in the Trade Fair section of Woolorama in 1989. The running of the Trade Fair had become a major project for the Wagin Rotary Club under the guidance of the Late Hugh Brockway, (a charter member of the Wagin Rotary Club 1958). Rotarian Ian Pederick became the Ground Controller in 1987 and continued in that role for 30 years (no mean feat), and last year Paul took on this key role and looks forward to the challenge.

Paul says it’s a very satisfying being involved in such a great community event as the Woolorama, to see Woolorama grow over the years to what it has become today is a great testament to so many willing volunteers over the years. He participated in this interview reluctantly as there are so many other generous people doing so much, and should be given much deserved acknowledgement too.

He reckons the real work of getting geared up for Woolorama starts on the long weekend prior to the event with the marking out of the oval, the Home and Lifestyle building and surrounding areas. In previous years (some time ago) the marking out of the oval was all done on foot with long measuring tapes and enough sighting pegs to fill up the farm ute. The white marking paint was applied by means of a sprayer mounted on a 4x wheel motor bike.  It was always a long leg weary day, made worse if it was hot, it could be very humid on the oval.  Today, with the advent of GPS and auto steer, the measure and mark out of the oval is done in a matter of hours using a tractor and a 3pl mounted sprayer. They still use a 4x wheel m/c for more restricted areas & for more fun.

The Thursday afternoon and up until midday Friday of the Woolorama is when the real pressure starts, making sure all exhibitors are settled in and happy with their site.

Once everyone has had a good show and by Sunday afternoon with the help of myriads of volunteers who just seem to appear out of nowhere, amazingly you would think nothing had happened over the previous 2 days.

Paul loves being involved in Woolorama it gives him the opportunity to be part of a great community. To give something constructive back, working with friends and always making new ones. Woolorama is a tremendously important event. It gives many people from far and wide the opportunity to exhibit their business and to express their given talents. Woolorama pulls and holds the community together. He feels this is especially important for our younger generation. They are our future, and hopefully through Woolorama they will become the volunteers of the future.


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