It is that time of year again when quite a few people get to walk down memory lane - aka Jones Parade Kindy in Coolum – to revisit their introduction to early education.
The reason for heading out this Sunday is the Coolum Beach Community Kindy annual Spring Fair which starts from 8am to 1pm.
And as this not-for-profit Creche & Kindergarten Association centre has been opening its wonderful door of opportunity for youngsters since 1982, there are a lot of ex-Koalas and Possums who like to return for this fun day out.
Some come through the gates with their parents - like they used to - and quite a few now have their own kids in tow.
There have been many changes over the 27 years, many wonderful additions and resources added like a child-friendly computer designed by IBM, but the high quality of care has never wavered under director Lorelle Frost, who has been there for most of those years.
The Spring Fair, the kindy parent’s labour of love, frustration and nervous tension all rolled into one; has paid for many of the wonderful play-things and improvements at Jones Parade.
It is the annual down payment to an exciting life of learning, but the one thing Lorelle and her fund-raising committee of volunteers cannot control is the weather. In this final week they are like NASA engineers intent on their one and only window of opportunity for a moon shot, staring at the weather radar.
Wander by the Possum and Koala group practising their singing for the fair, and you might hear the strains of “rain, rain, go away this Sunday…come back another day”.
This year the kindy Spring Fair will have a slightly different feel, but the same warm welcome. They will not be having a street fair, but using their large treed grounds for the stalls and entertainment.
There will be a sausage sizzle and coffee van to help keep famished families on the go as they give the garage sale a good going over.
There will be Pluck-A-Duck, the plant and cake stalls, jumping castle and entertainment on stage from the likes of the AusFunk Dance Studio, Hayley Green’s Models and of course the kindy kids themselves who may be sporting some natty fake tattoos and painted faces.
The smiles on the faces after the fair will take a little longer to come off. For the 40 kids and families who go to Jones Parade they are fixtures more often than not.
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