School’s 123-year tradition

SALE Primary School’s famous Garden Party will be on again on Friday night, featuring the 123rd performance of the Maypole Dance.

Principal Brad Evans promised an enjoyable  night, with beautiful weather and plenty to do, including rides, lucky bags, spinning wheels, raffles and plenty of food.

“Every cent that’s raised goes back into resources for the kids,” he said.

“Each and every year, our parents and friends group donate $20,000 to the school, with funds raised from all the sorts of activities that they do. This is the main one, it probably raises about half that, maybe a bit more.

“It is well supported by not just the school community but also people from right around Sale that come in for the event.”

The Maypole Dance, which will begin at 7pm on the front oval, is a long standing tradition, and a highlight of the night, he said.

“They’re out there skipping for 15 minutes,” he said. “For a lot of people it’s a tradition to come and see it every year.

“I’ll stand under these trees with some older ladies who did it 60 or 70 years ago.”

For the 70 maypolers, it’s the culmination of six weeks of hard work.

Senior teachers Susie Johnston and Amy Lace, in their first year of coordinating the maypole, said it had been a challenge.

“It’s also our first time training, neither of us were familiar with maypole before we started,” Ms Johnston said.

“The kids are doing a fabulous job, the biggest thing is building up that stamina to be able to skip that long.”

According to the students the best part is weaving the web, which Ms Johnston said they only learned on Monday.

They all agreed that the hardest part, apart from the skipping, is the tent.

“The pole holders have to flatten the ribbons, so you can’t see the shoes,” Ms Johnston said.

“Hopefully the weather will be perfect, and it’ll all be full steam ahead, the kids are so excited.”

Mr Evans agreed, and said it was a special night for the school community.

“We’ve had some great donations and fantastic support from local businesses and the community in providing donations for raffle and spinning wheel prizes,” he said.

“The music will be provided by the Sale City Band, they come and play live, which is always a nice fit.

“It’s good for a feed, have a go at some spinning wheels, go on a few rides!”

The Garden Party begins at 4pm, with the maypole from 7pm.