Alex Dalland

When Roseville local and lawn bowls coach Gerry Rynman saw the opportunity to host a Community Bowls day as part of Ku-ring-gai’s Annual Seniors Festival, he knew it was not one to be missed.

“I coach lawn bowls, mainly to seniors looking for a new outdoor activity, and our club happens to have our annual open day on the third of April,” Ryman says.

While Ku-ring-gai Council runs its Annual Seniors Festival through late March and early April, the NSW Seniors Festival – formerly Seniors Week – begun Friday April 1, going until April 10.

For 77-year-old Rymna, who coaches at the Roseville Bowling Club, the Festival is more than just an opportunity for seniors to participate in community events.

“Many retired people are unsure of their future regarding physical and social activities. The Seniors Festival is important for retirees, it gives them various options to pursure a new lifestyle.

“After all, life doesn’t stop the moment you retire.”

Aimed at over 60’s. as well as people over 50 who are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders or who have a long-term disability, the Seniors Festival encompasses a range of events held across New South Wales. These include workshops, open days and other activities run in the local Ku-ring-gai and Willoughby areas.

According to the City of Sydney Council, the Festival is the largest celebration for people over 60 in the Southern Hemisphere. The theme of this year’s Seniors Festival is ‘Growing Young’ and, as in years before, has been held to celebrate and recognise the role seniors play in the community.

“We take a lot of pride in putting on events and activities that keep everyone active – physically and socially,” Lord Mayour of Sydney Clover Moore said in a recent statement.

“I encourage our city’s older citizens to take part in some of the great things we’ve organised, including free concerts and performances, helpful workshops, walking tours and free entry to our pools.”

Turramurra resident Julie Antill hosted a free tour of the Turramurra Lookout Community Garden as part of the Ku-ring-gai Seniors Festival. Antill believes it is community groups like these which can play a vital role in helping Seniors to broaden their horizons, erxpand their social networks and continue to make a contribution to their community.

“I like the idea of the Seniors Festival,” Antill remarks.

“It celebrates that section of our population which is often overlooked or ignored but which also contributes so much voluntary labour and expertise in the community. The festival also highlights and shwocases a wide range of opportunities for seniors such as leisure, learning, exercise and socialising in our community.”

A full listing of events including those in the North Shore and Greater Sydney can be found at: