Yabbies planning club’s 50th anniversary celebrations

Flashback to 1979 when the Yabbies were on tour. Cobar Yabbies Club secretary Bob Clark (who’s absent from this photo) has identified all 16 members but how did you go recognising who they all are? (Just for fun, we’ve hidden their names on the opposite page. Have a guess first and when you get stumped, then check the list opposite.)
▪ Photo contributed

To mark their 50th anniversary as a Senior Men’s Swimming Club, all past and present Cobar Yabbies have been invited to a Reunion Dinner and Mini Swim Carnival this October.

The Yabbies’ first swim was on Sunday  October 24, 1971 after the club was formed at a meeting of 13 interested swimmers held at the Cobar Bowling & Golf Club on October11, 1971.

At the meeting Roger Boyle (now deceased) was elected as the club’s first president with Reg Chandler their first secretary/treasurer.

The first carnival the Cobar Yabbies attended was the following year in Nyngan at their then January long weekend swim which was also attended by swimmers from the Blacktown, Cronulla and Manly clubs.

The Yabbies had three swimmers competing with Mick Gunton, Jack Spencer and Bob Clark flying the flag for the new club.

Over the past 50 years Yabbies have competed at all of the Western Districts AIF Carnivals since 1972 and spasmodically at National AIF Carnivals from 1973 to 2004. Since 2004 the club has been represented without fail each year at AIF National carnivals.

In 1990, the Cobar club was invited to attend the Annual Four Way Swim, a competition held between the Nelson Bay, Malabar, Forbes and Gosford clubs.

After the swim, the Yabbies were added to the annual event (with the name changed to Five Way Swim) and they have attended each season since.

Over the years, annual membership has varied from around a dozen swimmers to at times more than 50 depending on the fortunes of the local mining industry.

Almost 600 swimmers have to date at one time been a Yabbie and enjoyed the swimming and social activities the club offers.

Current club secretary and founding member, Bob Clark said they are endeavouring to contact as many previous members as they could find to invite them to the reunion.

“We also are looking for any old photos that can be included in a history booklet and video slide show,” Bob said.

“Foundation secretary/treasurer Reg Chandler has already indicated that he will be attending.”

As the Yabbies always have a good time when they get together, Bob expects it’s sure to be a great reunion. For more information, see advertisement on Page 13.