Convention Reflection 2017

Adelaide Convention 2017

The Lions Club of the City of Adelaide was honoured to be the host club for the 2017 Lions 201 C1 District Convention which was held on 6-8 of October, 2017.

Wow! What an amazing 3-day weekend, and what a Convention at the fabulous Thebarton Community Centre!

DG Megan Butler and the Committee had ideas a plenty, and together, a vision for the Convention evolved. Megan talks a lot about change, and with the support of the committee, the convention was all about change, change for the better, change for the future. Tomorrow Starts Today!

Not everyone agreed with the direction we decided to take the convention in, introducing a number of changes together with a different format. We worked on this convention for over 12 months, and in those last few months we worked around the clock. Who needs sleep right?! But it worked. We pulled it off and have been overwhelmed with the positive feedback and comments.

Day 1 (Friday) – Prior to the convention starting, we were delighted to have the South Australian Police Band performing. The Convention was opened by the Mayor of the City of West Torrens, Hon. John Trainer OAM, and we were honoured to have Lions International Director Tony Benbow OAM as our special guest. We followed the usual Lions protocols, and then the bright and musical opening began. The Adelaide Dance Entertainers performed for our conventioneers before leading out the flags for Leos, Lionesses, United Nations, and Lions International.  The SA Police Band then proceeded to play the anthems of India, Indonesia, New Zealand, USA and Australia with the dancers presenting the flag of each of these countries.

The afternoon continued on with the business sessions, which traditionally are held on the Saturday. This change was received well. At the conclusion of all business, all registered persons and sponsors were invited to a Civic Reception held at the Adelaide Town hall, hosted by the Lord Mayor, The Right Honourable Martin Haese. It was a lovely and memorable evening.

Day 2 (Saturday) – What an inspirational day. We were honoured to have presentations by the Lions Medical Research Foundation Skin Cancer Screening, Australian Lions Hearing Dogs, Eye Bank of SA, Craniofacial Australia & Damian DeWit, Angel Flight, Gleeson Wetlands Project, Garvin Medical Research Institute, and Motor Neurone Disease. During the afternoon, the Youth of the Year District Final was held, and His Excellency Hieu Van Le, the Governor of SA made the presentations.

On the Saturday evening, it was time to throw on a tux, put on a dress and heels, and have a great time at the Convention Gala Dinner. With a sea of blue and yellow, lanterns and fairy lights, it was a great atmosphere. Leonardo Di Lion made a surprise appearance. The food was delicious, the silent auction items were amazing and a steal, the SA Navy Band were brilliant, and of course fabulous company. During the evening, the Lions & SAPOL Citizen of the Year Award was presented by the President of The Lions Club of the City of Adelaide, Andrew Stacey, and the Police Commissioner, Grant Stevens.

Day 3 (Sunday) – A moving remembrance ceremony was held in the morning to remember members of our Lions Family. There was beautiful music played on the harp by soprano Emma Horwood, accompanied by tea light candles being placed on the ‘C’ structure in honour of each person.

The convention was closed and flags handed over to the Port Augusta Lions Club who will be hosting the 2018 District Convention. The weekend wasn’t over yet because there was still the Lions Community Family Fun Day to go with a jumping castle, classic cars and bike display, lions project displays, YMCA fun and games, giant games, donuts by the Crystal Brook Lions Club, and a sausage sizzle by the City of Adelaide Lions. The Lions Skin Cancer Trailer offered free screenings and the Golden Grove Lions Club offered free medical checks. It was fantastic to see Lions, family, friends and the general public coming together to celebrate and learn about Lions, and have fun.

Before, during and after the convention, we have learnt a lot. Change is not something to be afraid of, but something to embrace. We can only try, and if the change doesn’t work, we review and try again.

Thank you to everyone who got involved, attended and supported us throughout the Convention. A special thank you to the City of West Torrens Council, the City of Adelaide Council, SA Police Band, the Navy Band and our sponsors. It was certainly a memorable convention.

Convention Chairman                    Convention Secretary
Tony Pederick OAM                        Petrea Stacey