Joan McFarlane, one of the Mount Gambier Greyhound Racing & Coursing Club’s earliest life members and a long-time member of the ladies committee, passed away last week at the age of 95.
Mrs McFarlane was the wife of the late Andrew (Drew), also a life member of the club and well-remembered for his success with the “Invercoe” coursing greyhounds.
Another life member in Bill Ward, who was also president between 1991 and 1997, said this week that Mrs McFarlane had been a great stalwart of the club.
“She was always at the coursing meetings as a member of the ladies committee and then later at Glenburnie when racing commenced on the track.
“I still remember when we were building the current clubrooms on Lake Terrace East and we were looking for funds to finish off the canteen.
“I was hoping that the ladies committee, through its fundraising, might have accumulated sufficient funds that would allow us to finish the job.
“As it turned out they probably had more money than we did. Anyway, I approached Joan and thanks to her and the rest of the ladies committee the canteen was able to be finished.”
But long before that, the ladies committee had been acknowledged in the race program of the SE Greyhound Racing Club (as it was then known), when a gala opening day was conducted on Sunday, June 24, 1979 as a lead-in to the first licensed track meeting the following month.
All successful sporting clubs need the backing of an industrious ladies committee. The SE Greyhound Racing Club Ladies Committee was formed in August 1978 and comprises Mesdames E. J. Cruise (President), J. A. Badger (Secretary/Treasurer), M. Potter, P. Ward, C. Allchurch, C. Miller, J. McFarlane, A. Patzel and M. Mangan. This committee has been active in fundraising and has catered for our many dog owners on trial days with a refreshments stall. The luncheon on this Gala Opening Day has also been arranged by our Ladies Committee.