By Jo-Anne Farrell
It’s that time of the year again! The annual Ambulance Goods Wheel, run by the Hervey Bay Local Ambulance Committee (LAC) will start on Saturday 15th December and will run for 3 weeks till Saturday 5th January 2019. The Wheel is held every night (except Christmas Day) at ‘The Stage”, Scarness, starting at 7pm.
For more than 65 years the Goods Wheel has been held on the Scarness foreshore during the Christmas & New Year holidays. It has become a much looked forward to tradition for many local and holidaying families, to come down and try their luck on the ‘Big Ambulance Wheel’.Thousands of people have walked up the ‘Garden Path’ to collect their prizes. The Wheel is something the whole family can participate in and enjoy, as tickets are still just 50 cents each!
Depending on the crowds, either 100-200 tickets are sold before the wheel is spun. On average 30-40 spins are held each night. All winning ticket holders get to choose their own prize off the shelves from the huge range on display. Over 950 prizes are sourced locally throughout the year by volunteers from the Hervey Bay LAC. Prizes include lots of toys, puzzles & games, manchester, beach & bath towels, home-wares, small electrical items, auto gear & tools, camping, fishing & gardening items, scooters, body boards, eskies and so much more.
All losing tickets with name and phone number on the back, go in the barrel for a chance to win the Major Prize of a Hooded Gas BBQ, which will be drawn on the last night.
Santa will be stopping by on Christmas Eve, too, with sweet treats for the children.
The Ambulance Goods Wheel could not run without the support of the local Service Clubs and groups, who volunteer their time to come down to sell tickets. Each night there is a different club or group who helps out. Support from the community for the Ambulance Goods Wheel is amazing, as they know that their efforts are going to help the Hervey Bay Ambulance Service.
One local furniture business supplies a truck each year, to help transport the Wheel, shelves, and bench seats to and from the ‘Stage’.Others donate prizes for second chance draws.
From proceeds of the Goods Wheel over the years, some of the things the Hervey Bay LAC have purchased for the Hervey Bay QAS include, defibrillators, special training mannequins, Leatherman multi-purpose tools, tough books, CPR training equipment, and supplies, and a special hover mat and jack to help paramedics move bariatric patients more safely.
The Ambulance Goods Wheel is definitely a great community event, run by community volunteers, for the benefit of the whole community and holidaymakers should they ever need the assistance of Hervey Bay’s Queensland Ambulance Service.