BBQ and beers to celebrate new Men's Shed this afternoon
A LARGE crowd is expected to gather in Bangalow this afternoon for the official opening of the new Men's Shed.
There will be barbecue and beers from 4.30pm and at 6pm Byron Shire Mayor, Simon Richardson, will unveil the site.
The shed opening is the culmination of a four year joint effort by the Bangalow Lions Club and the broader Bangalow Community.
Speaking prior to the opening, the Shed Convenor Brian Mackney said the Bangalow Lions Club has committed virtually all of its resources over recent years towards the establishment of the facility.
Land was made available by the Catholic Church and with the assistance of local professionals, suppliers, contractors and builders, development approval was obtained and a shed and carpark was constructed. The total cost was more than $100,000.
Over recent months, a determined group of Lions and community volunteers has continued to work tirelessly to fit-out the shed.
Mr Mackney said over 60 individual groups have offered their goods, services and expertise, either free of charge or at reduced costs, to see the building completed.
As many as nine electricians have donated their time to complete the electrical fit-out; with several plumbers, plasterers and other trades people contributing to other works.
Many others provided generous cash donations to enable the purchase of much needed materials, Mr. Mackney said.
There will always be more work to do, Mr Mackney said, to ensure the venture is sustainable and provides the services needed to foster the health and wellbeing of the men in the community.
Mr Mackney said Men's Sheds are all about health, focusing on the physical, mental and social wellbeing of individuals within the group.
The Shed will cater for a range of activities, in addition to the traditional woodwork and metal-working activities.
Some of the planned activities include cooking in a commercial kitchen, learning, communications and entertainment in the computer facilities and exercise and health programs.
Opportunities are being discussed to foster appreciation and learning in the arts and music, with special attention to the visual and hearing impaired.
Funds were sought through the NSW State Government's Community Builders Program to provide solar power collection and storage and audio visual aids for hearing and visually impaired members, as well as extensions to the building to meet the special needs of individual groups.