Athletes, cultural ambassadors, volunteers and young achievers were among those celebrated at this year’s Gore District Community Awards.
About 360 people were at the annual gala dinner on Friday 1 November to support their friends and family.
The Community Awards are the Gore District Council’s flagship event. Started 13 years ago, they are a way of saying ‘thank you’ to those who have made an impact on the community, or applaud the achievements of those who have excelled in their chosen field.
This year’s awards attracted 46 nominees across eight categories, with particularly high entries in the arts categories.
Gore District Mayor Tracy Hicks said the calibre of nominees was impressive.
“I’m always staggered at the commitment of people in our community, many of them putting in hundreds of volunteer hours.
“The Awards remind us that the strength of our District is its people,” Mr Hicks said.
The Civic Award was won by Maurice Broome, who has created cycle trails in Gore around the perimeter of Hamilton Park and alongside the Mataura River in Gore, resulting in greater use of those areas.
“He has been tenacious in his efforts, resourceful in getting materials and has done a huge amount of the planning and physical work himself,” Mr Hicks said.
Guest speaker was Olympic medallist BMX biker Sarah Walker, who also generously gave her time to attend a Gore BMX Club meet on Friday, and was at the Mataura Pump Track Saturday 2 November for an event organised by Gore Police, between 9.30am and 11.00am.
The full list of this year’s recipients is:
Civic Award Winner:
- Maurice Broome
J D Souness Young Achiever Award
- Joint winner: James Wards
- Joint winner: Hamish Goatley
Soroptimist International of Gore Woman of the Year
- Mairi Dickson
Gore Musical Theatre Emerging Performing Artist Award
- Sev Alanquihan
Otago Daily Times / The Ensign Services to Sport
- Dana Turnbull
Mataura Licensing Trust Junior Sportsperson
- Winner: Paige McIvor
- Runner-up: Cameron Millar
Sport Southland Community Coach of the Year
- Simone Thornett
Anderson Lloyd Contribution to Arts and Culture
- Joint winner: Janice Broad
- Joint winner: Debbie Smith
Mainland Minerals Environment Award
- Winner: Elsie Street and Longford Kindergarten