Most Anzac Day services across Port Stephens will go ahead on Sunday but some have been scaled back as RSL sub-branches adhere to COVID-19 regulations.
The current public health order requires service organisers to collect contact details for tracing, fence off their events and have guests seated.
Some groups say they are unable to do this while others have the resources and space to carry out their services almost as normal, such as Tilligerry RSL Sub-Branch.
That services are going ahead at all this year has been welcomed by sub-branches, but residents unable to get to a service and wish to pay tribute to veterans past and present are still being encouraged to Light Up the Dawn on Sunday, April 25.
Listed is the Port Stephens Anzac Day services going ahead on Sunday, including changes from previous years due to the ongoing pandemic:
- No mid-morning march.
- 5.45am: Dawn Service at the Anzac Park memorial followed by a gunfire breakfast at Raymond Terrace Bowling Club.
- 11am: Morning service at Anzac Park
- 9am: Service at the Knitting Circle Memorial in Newline Road
- No dawn service or mid-morning march.
- 10.30am: Anzac Day service in Apex Park, Nelson Bay
- 11.45am: Luncheon at Wests Nelson Bay Diggers for invited guests
- No mid-morning service at the Karuah RSL memorial wall.
- 5.45am: March from the garage on the Old Pacific Highway to Memorial Park for 6am Dawn Service.
- Breakfast at Karuah RSL will be restricted to members and their guests, uniformed participants, and ticket holders. The club will open to the general public at 10am.
- Anzac Day march and services as normal.
- 5.45am: Dawn Service at Tilligerry RSL Sports Club war memorial followed by gunfire breakfast for gold coin donation.
- 9.30am: March from the southern gates of Avenue of the Allies, Tanilba Bay to the club for 9.45am service.
- Dawn service has been restricted to sub branch members only. A flag will be flying all day at Lions Park for anyone wanting to lay a wreath.
- No dawn service or march.
- 9am: Main service by ticket only (free) in vacant lot next to Club Stockton.
Statement from Stockton RSL Sub-Branch on its Anzac Day services:
"An RSL dawn service and morning march has been cancelled due to our inability to meet the Newcastle City Council and police requirements for our community. A permit to use the Anzac Cenotaph in Mitchell Street must meet all the COVID-19 requirements for events and this is beyond our small sub-branch means.
"The RSL sub-branch, however, has kindly been offered the use of the Club Stockton facilities and the use of the vacant lot next to the club to hold a service at 9am. This will be a ticketed event that is free to attend within the capacity of the venue. If you would like to attend this ceremony you will need to see the club reception during office hours, provide contact details for a contact register and obtain an access pass to enter the enclosed land on Anzac Day. Club Stockton's COVID-19 rules must be observed on the day with attendees welcome to use the club facilities after the service."
The sub-branch is encouraging the community to Light Up the Dawn.
- Shoal Bay Country Club will host two-up in its car park from 12pm
- Lakeside Village Tavern, Raymond Terrace will host two-up from 12pm
As part of Anzac Day commemorations on Sunday, April 25 the RAAF will be conducting flypasts in Nelson Bay and Tanilba Bay. Anzac Day holds special significance for the RAAF this year as it marked its 100th birthday on March 31.
- Tilligerry RSL Sports Club, Tanilba Bay: 10.59am, F-35A Lightning II
- Nelson Bay, 11am-11.30am, F-35A Lightning II
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