Wow, what a week! We welcomed a record-breaking 25,000 visitors for the 2017 Parkes Elvis Festival. The 25th anniversary saw fans travel from all across Australia and the world to enjoy the 120 events. Preliminary results indicate approximately $15 million was injected into the local economy over the five days – a huge boost not only for Parkes, but the entire region. It is due to the hard work and dedication from our volunteers, Council staff and sponsors without whom the festival would not be possible. I would like to thank our wonderful community for putting on the friendly charm and country hospitality – something that Parkes is now renowned for.
Congratulations are extended to Pauline van der Merwe from Parkes who is the lucky winner of the Shop Parkes + Win campaign. Pauline entered the draw after shopping at Byrnes Clothing. She has won a trip to Las Vegas valued at $4,000. Thank you to our wonderful businesses who participated in the campaign.
Next week we will welcome media personality Susie Elelman as our Australia Day Ambassador. Susie will present the Citizen- ship Awards during the official ceremonies at Parkes and Peak Hill. There will be events in Parkes, Bogan Gate, Peak Hill, Trundle and Tullamore and I encourage everyone to join the celebrations. For information about Australia Day Shire, visit www.visitparkes. com.au.
Parkes Shire residents are encouraged to meet and greet our newly elected Mem- ber for Orange, Philip Donato at a barbeque today in Cooke Park between 12 and 3pm.
Local sporting groups and educational in- stitutes are reminded that applications for the Northparkes Sports Grants close 31st January. For more information visit www. parkes.nsw.gov.au.
Yours Faithfully, Cr Ken Keith OAM Mayor of Parkes Shire