Timely party

• Fremantle Rotary veterans Don Bodlovich and George Booth. Photo by Jenny D’Anger.

FREMANTLE Rotary is celebrating its 90th birthday with a nostalgic family fun day.

Egg and spoon races, dancing, face painting, farm animals and circus performers will all be part of the fun at Princess May Park.

Fremantle was a very different place when the local Rotary launched in 1929.

WA was approaching its centenary, but wasn’t quite a city, communication was by letter, and endless world peace was predicted.

A year later the great depression hit, and Freo Rotary came into its own by helping thousands of unemployed and destitute locals.

Over the years, Fremantle Rotary has come to the aid of countless people in Australia and overseas.

Former Palmyra pharmacist Don Bodlovich retired a few years ago, but is still a Rotarian, having joined in 1969.

He says that raising funds to help eradicate polio was one of his proudest moments.

“Our club exceeded its target and raised $10,000,” he says.

The local chapter also raised $25,000 to establish the first dedicated heart ambulance at Fremantle Hospital, and each year donates a similar amount to the hospital’s research unit, Mr Bodlovich says.

He’s also proud to have been on the committee that approved women members in 1994.

“Amidst controversy, debate and threats of member resignations.”

Rotary International started in the US in 1905 bringing together business and professional people to provide humanitarian services.

The Rotary fun day is on tomorrow (Sunday October 27) at Princess May Park (behind Clancy’s Fish Pub), 10am-4pm.

Family admission is $5. Tickets via Rotary’s Facebook page or at the gate.

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