Charity carnival

ON ANY normal day in Rheola you couldn't buy an ice-cream, but yesterday, cool refreshments were selling in overdrive.

The 134th Rheola Charity Carnival, held at Pioneer's Park attracted thousands of people, who enjoyed plenty of entertainment.

Woodchopping to clowns and footraces, ensured a buzzing atmosphere surrounded the annual event which primarily raises funds for Inglewood and Dunolly hospitals.

Carnival MC Merv Mason has been involved in the event for more than 50 years.

"Last year about $12,000 was raised and shared between the Dunolly and Inglewood hospitals, with money also put towards maintenance for the Rheola Public Hall and Pioneers' Park," Mr Mason said.

"For such a small town, the event is huge.

"Last year at least 3000 people walked through the gates, which was our record figure. We expect a similar turnout this year," he said.

Central Goldfields Shire Councillor Valerie Andrews said the community response in light of the annual fundraiser was tremendous.

"In the last four years, the community has raised $350,000 for the Dunolly hospital which reflects the concern and initiative of locals to support our facilities," she said. The Clarkson family, from Bendigo, travelled to Rheola yesterday to experience an Easter carnival of a different kind.

"We've spent most of the weekend enjoying the entertainment in Bendigo, but this was a chance to try something different, we've been very impressed with the variety of entertainment," Mrs Clarkson said.

"The children have enjoyed the horse racing, lucky-dip and footraces and my husband has sat in front of the tractors all afternoon, it's been a great day," she said.

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