The Last of the 2017 Lead Up Events is complete!

The last of the x month to MEGA lead up events for this year was held at Wangaratta on the weekend.  That concludes the lead up events for this year and so with just on a month to go until the MEGA, we would like to look back at what was an incredible year of lead up events.

From the heat that was Wedderburn in February, through to negative temperatures at Canberra in July.  Sunshine in Swan Hill, rain in Echuca, we braved all sorts of weather to bring you some pretty special events.  And the results from all those attended logs are in!

There were 8 teams who actually made it to all 10 events.  That is an amazing achievement! A Massive Thank You must also go the the 3 hosts of the extra special Interstate lead up events. So Thanks must go to hevwalker, OzGlory and GhostGums who all did an awesome job helping to promote our event.

All up there were 211 teams that attended at least 1 of the events, with a total of 438 attended logs across all 10 official events.  That’s a pretty serious turn out.

A estimated 1000 sausages were provided, cooked and consumed, not to mention all the bread, onions and sauce.  Running these events is not easy and can sometimes provide a logistical nightmare, but when you see the pictures of everyone thoroughly enjoying themselves, it makes it so worthwhile.

Thanks for all the fun memories and we look forward to catching up with you all in Alexandra next month!

Geocaching Melbourne Inc is changing its name.

That’s right, Geocaching Melbourne is changing its name.  It has long been thought that the Geocaching Melbourne Incorporation has outgrown its name and that we need a better one that more closely aligns us with what we do in the community of not just Melbourne, but also all of Victoria and further afield.  So we need your suggestions!

Along with this, we have created a new Facebook group.  Now we can already hear a collective sigh because the Geocaching Community of Victoria obviously needs a new Geocaching Facebook Group like a hole in the head, but the committee that is currently called Geocaching Melbourne Inc (the one that is changing its name), felt that we needed a Facebook group that the actual committee was in control of, rather than the current one that we have no control over.

So the new group, which is administered by the committee, has been set up and a set of guidelines is being produced.  This new Facebook group will be the centre for discussion for all things relating to geocaching in the state of Victoria, including obviously the annual MEGA event.  It will be administered by the committee members who are real people and whose names you can see.

Come over to the new Facebook group and be part of the discussion and have your input into what you think Geocaching Melbourne should change its name to.  Follow this link to the new group….   https://www.facebook.com/groups/1968265890117240/

A new GMI committee member…

Geocaching Melbourne Inc would like to announce that the new member of the Geocaching Melbourne committee is Lorraine Sleep Oglivie. Lorraine has been geocaching since 2013 and has cached over most of Australia. Lorraine has a strong connection to both the Geelong and Ballarat geocaching communities and together with her partner Chris form the formidable geocaching team, The Tritonz who were the top finders of Victorian caches in both 2015 and 2016.

Lorraine was an integral part of the organizing committee set up by GMI for the Surf Coast Event MEGA in 2016 where she helped tirelessly in the background, not just during the MEGA, but in the whole year leading up to the MEGA. GMI welcomes Lorraine into the committee and we all look forward to working with her.

We would also like to thank Jane Searle (Benjay21) and Peter Taurins (caughtatwork) for their nominations. We had 92 votes come in from around Victoria which were all individually checked and passed for their eligibility, so the interest in GMI continues to grow and we hope that we can work with these two individuals in some capacity in the future

The Geocaching Melbourne Inc committee now looks like this….

Day Gowland (day1976) – President

Louise Sullivan (LouiseAnn) – Vice President

Adriaan Homburg (ahomburg) – Secretary

Bernie Hollaway (BernieH) – Treasurer

Karen Ashford (carkisser) – Committee Member

Bert Mosterd (Pinkpiggy7) – Committee Member

Lorraine Sleep-Oglivie(The Tritonz) – Committee Member

Voting has Opened!

Voting has opened for the vacant position on the Geocaching Melbourne Inc committee. We have three wonderful candidates who have nominated for the position and you can follow this link to the voting form.

This position is for the GMI committee, not the Alexandra MEGA Organizing committee. The GMI committee not only oversees the MEGAs, but also gets involved in many other facets of geocaching throughout the state of Victoria.

There is a little blurb about each individual on the voting form, in case you aren’t sure who they are. You are required to enter your geocaching handle on the voting form and to be eligible to vote you must have at least found a geocache in the state of Victoria, have had a geocaching.com profile that is at least 3 months old and have found at least one geocache in the last 6 months.  You can submit one vote per profile

Once you have entered your geocaching handle simply place the numbers 1 to 3 against the candidates, ranging from number 1 for your first selection through to number 3 for your last selection. Voting will be open until 8pm on Sunday the 8th of October.  You must submit only one vote per profile and to keep it fair, we would encourage people who do run sock-puppet accounts to not use them to vote with.

Nominations for GMI Committee position are open!

Geocaching Melbourne Inc is a registered, not-for-profit incorporation that is run by a dedicated core committee of volunteers that not only oversee the running of the annual MEGA, but also try and develop varied and different ways to help the geocaching community of Victoria. Recently, one of our committee, Sarah Cameron resigned from this committee.

Firstly we would like to thank Sarah for all the hard work that she has put in over many years. Sarah is an original member of the GMI committee, having been there from its creation back in 2014. She has worked hard in the background to help with all the areas that Geocaching Melbourne has been involved with and has provided some strong ties between Geocaching Melbourne and the various other geocaching communities around the country.

This obviously leaves another vacant position on the GMI committee and so we are once again calling for nominations for people who feel like they can help GMI to make a difference in the geocaching community of Victoria. It must be noted here, that this position is NOT for the organizing committee of the Alexandra MEGA, that event is already well catered for. If you would like to join us in helping further the cause of Geocaching in Melbourne and Victoria (if not the world!) then feel free to nominate yourself or someone else (with their permission) by sending us an email.

Please note though that whilst we would love to encourage people from country Victoria, it should be understood that taking on the role as a committee member means attending regular meetings in Melbourne roughly every two to three months. Nominations will remain open from now until midnight on Friday the 29th of September. Voting will then begin on Monday the 2nd of October for all of those who have been nominated. Voting will close at midnight on Sunday the 8th of October and the results will be announced shortly afterwards.

The results are in…..

Geocaching Melbourne Inc would like to welcome the two newest members into the Geocaching Melbourne Committee. Karen Ashford (carkisser) and Bert Mosterd (Pinkpiggy7) have been voted in and join the rest of the committee in their endeavours to help promote geocaching throughout Victoria.  We would sincerely like to thank the other candidates, Elizabeth Shaw (surefoot24) and Peter Taurins (caughtatwork) for their nominations and hope we can work with both of them in some capacity in the near future.  The Geocaching Melbourne Inc committee now looks like this…

Day Gowland (day1976) – President

Louise Sullivan (LouiseAnn) – Vice President

Adriaan Homburg (ahomburg) – Secretary

Bernie Hollaway (BernieH) – Treasurer

Sarah Cameron (sharkiefan) – Committee Member

Karen Ashford (carkisser) – Committee Member

Bert Mosterd (Pinkpiggy7) – Committee Member

The turnout for people voting was quite amazing and we would like to thank everyone for their interest.

We want you to have your say!

Voting has now opened for the two vacant positions on the Geocaching Melbourne Inc committee. There have been four individuals nominated and you can follow this link to the voting form…

There is a little blurb about each person who has nominated in case you aren’t sure who they are. You are required to enter your geocaching handle and to be eligible to vote you must have found at least one cache in Victoria.  You also must have found at least one cache in the last 6 months and have an active account on the Geocaching Website for at least 3 months.

Once you have entered your geocaching handle simply place the numbers 1 to 4 against the candidates, ranging from number 1 for your first selection through to number 4 for your last selection. Voting will be open until 8pm on Sunday the 18th of June.  You must submit only one vote per profile and we would encourage people who do run sock-puppet accounts to not use them to vote with.

 

 

Geocaching Melbourne and Oxfam Trailwalker

Over the last couple of days, 16 members of the Geocaching Melbourne community have formed 4 teams to each tackle the grueling 100 kilometer Oxfam Trailwalker to raise some much needed funds for the Oxfam charity. The Oxfam Trailwalker requires each walker to walk 100 kilometers, starting at Jells Park in suburban Melbourne, through the parklands, over Churchill National park, into Lysterfield Lake Park, then across through Bird Lands Reserve, up into the town of Upwey then into the Dandenong Ranges National Park, popping out at Mt Evelyn where it joins the Warburton Rail Trail for 26 kilometers before climbing up and along the aqueduct at the foot of Mt Donna Buang, it then wanders down to Warburton before tackling the nemesis that is Mount Little Joe, finally reaching the finish line in Wesburn.  To say it is a grueling track is an understatement.

Team 1 consisted of Colin (unclecocopops), Michelle (part of Team Smokey Bear), Robin (robinyang) and Darren (Burge). Team 2 consisted of Paul (waferthin), Darragh (Annoying Tarbit), Lauren (Loz6032) and Nicky (Lost_and_found_79).  Team 3 consisted of Karen (carkisser), Shaz (Ruverbug Jam), Donna (Jaktembo) and Tash (arielisme).  Team 4 consisted of Day (day1976), Jenny (Jentrek1), Marc (BendSinister) and Ross (The Welder).

The Friday morning began brilliantly with perfect weather at the start as each team headed out on to the trail. The official support crews as well as many other extremely supportive members of the Geocaching Melbourne community met everyone at various different points along the way to help, encourage and cheer everybody on.  Each team had set themselves a target goal time to complete the course ranging from 20 hours to 38 hours, so the four teams began to spread out through the day.  They enjoyed the walk through the Dandenong Ranges National Park, but the final stint out to Mt Evelyn as the day began to turn to night began to test the teams and unfortunately Team 1, decimated by injuries had to pull out at around 4am on the Saturday morning at Mount Evelyn.

The crack of sunrise at 5:30am on the Saturday morning saw Team 4, exhausted from conquering Mount Little Joe, stumble down the final hill to cross the finish line in just over 23 hours with all members still walking. Later in the day at around 1:30pm, the incredible team 2 also conquered the daunting last mountain to come down the hill and finish the entire course in just over 30 hours, also with all four members still upright.

At around 4:30pm on the Saturday, the only remaining Geocaching Melbourne Team on the trail, team 3, walked into Woori Yallock, half way along the Warburton Trail. At this point they had done 70 of the 100 kilometers, but suddenly, the weather turned against them and a huge storm passed over which stopped all further movement for the next few hours.  The team had to wait, huddled at Woori Yallock for the storm to pass before continuing on.  At around 9pm, Geocaching Melbourne’s Team 3 lost its first member, Donna, who retired from the team.  But the other three girls pushed on, boosted by an ever increasing support crew as they made their way to Millgrove where again they had to wait out another storm front.

Finally they made it to Dolly Grey Park, which is the last official rest stop before the finish line.  The rain was pouring down, the wind was up and thunder and lightning was surrounding the area.  Team 3 was now the last of over 600 starting teams left on the trail and unfortunately Karen had to make the heart-breaking decision to call it a day at the 93 kilometer mark.  The other two surviving members, Shaz and Tash needed to leave in the storm so as to make the finish line before it is closed for good.  They headed off, up backstairs track in the mud during the dead of the night to knock off the final section and arrived at the finish line at around 9am on Sunday morning, completing the entire course in less than 41 hours.

The achievements that all 16 of these wonderful geocachers have done can only be fully realized when you look beyond just this weekend. There were months and months of training out on the tracks.  There were personal hardships that needed to be overcome.  All just to even get to the starting line, let alone then to walk the 100 kilometers.  Lifelong friendships were born during this process and people who before this had never even met, come to rely on each other for support through a very strenuous ordeal.

And then there were the support crews. At each stop along the trail, each team got to meet up with their wonderful support crews who lugged all the supplies that could ever be imagined to each location.  Without a strong support crew, none of the previously mentioned achievements are even closely possible.  All four teams were blessed with some amazing people who volunteered their time as support crews and the fact that many members of these support crews also helped out many other support crews along the way speaks volumes about what kind of people these guys are.

And finally of course there are those who donated. Geocaching Melbourne was proud to be a supporter of these four teams.  Specially minted Geocoins for the upcoming Alexandra Event were sold with images of our mascot, Fern carrying hiking poles.  All proceeds from the sale of these coins were donated to these teams as well as the huge amounts of moneys that all four teams raised by themselves both inside and outside of the local geocaching community.  All up the teams managed to raise over eleven thousand dollars for the Oxfam charity.

The whole experience is a fantastic example of how strong and also kind the Geocaching Melbourne community is. That we have so many members who so willingly donate their time not just to train and walk this grueling course, but also to provide support or help raise money for such an awesome cause is a testament to the kind of people we are.  Geocaching Melbourne would like to thank each and every one of you for making this Oxfam Trailwalker such a success.  You guys rock!

Alexandra Event Update – 19th Feb

So Sunday rolls around again and we are another week closer to the Alexandra MEGA event this coming November. Planning on the many facets of this huge event has already well and truly begun.

labccacheThis includes LAB caches. Yep, we are not leaving these to the last minute.  We have selected some of the most creative cache placers in the state to rack their brains to come up with the most dazzling ideas that they can.  And, they have 9 months to plan, design and build some LAB caches that will truly make the Alexandra Event an event to be remembered.  If you’ve never done a LAB cache, then check out this link

 

If you have done LAB caches before and you enjoy them, prepare to be amazed this coming November!

ax2017-geocoin-oxThe first of the geocoins are still on sale and will continue to sell until the 9th of April.  This very special coin depicts Fern out taking a hike and as mentioned previously all profit from the sale of these coins is going directly to the four Geocaching Melbourne Oxfam Teams that are competing the 100 kilometer Oxfam challenge this April.  There will be other coins go on sale later in the year, but if you want the whole set, or if you just want to help support the Geocaching Melbourne Oxfam teams, then make sure you order one of these coins straight away to avoid disappointment!  Follow this link to purchase your coin today!

 

wedderburnfaces2

The second one of the lead up events went off amazingly yesterday in Wedderburn. 44 teams attended the event and ate 80 of the best bushman’s sausages in Australia, kindly donated to us by Anvil Angus and Alexandra Quality Meats.  It is sensational to see so many people making the trip out to Wedderburn with many teams staying in the area for the weekend.  The next lead up event is in Portland on the 11th of March.  You can follow this link to the event listing.  We look forward to seeing you all then!

 

eventtshirtsOf course the merchandise continues to sell and it is fantastic to see The Alexandra Event t-shirts, jumpers and polo shirts appearing at events around the state already. The feedback so far on the quality of the merchandise is that it is of excellent quality and the couple of issues that people have so far reported have all been quickly resolved by spreadshirt.  You can follow this link to our spreadshirt shop to design and build your own shirt and if you are not completely happy with the end product we of course encourage you to contact spreadshirt immediately.

 

We hope you are all enjoying getting out and finding lots of caches. We look forward to seeing you all in November and remember, if you’re hoping to come, make sure you log your “Will Attend” on the event listing today!

The Alexandra Event Update – Feb

Its update time for the Alexandra MEGA Event that is coming up in November….

1stvisit1st – A couple of members of the organizing committee had our first meeting with the president of the showground’s committee this week onsite and had a good look around.  There is plenty of room to spread out and lots of undercover areas if the weather should dare to be inclement.  There is also a large area for non-powered camping as well as a limited number of sites available for powered camping.  These sites will be on sale through the showground’s committee soon and we will provide you with the contact details once they have worked out a suitable layout for the camping.

ax2017-geocoin-oxThe first of the Geocoins went on sale a couple of weeks ago. This one is a very special limited edition coin that will only be available for purchase between now and the 9th of April this year.  There will certainly be other geocoins available for purchase through the year and of course at the event, but this one is strictly pre-purchase only and can ONLY be purchased between now and the 9th of April.  For this coin only, all proceeds are to be donated to the 4 fabulous Geocaching Melbourne teams who are completing the Oxfam Trailwalker event this year.  So if you want to get yourself a wonderful geocoin that is sure to be a collector’s item in the future, as well as support the Geocaching Melbourne members who are all walking 100 kilometers for the Oxfam charity, this coin is fantastic value at only $25.  Purchases can be made through our website, just follow this link.

jostshirtMerchandise has been on sale for a while now and little by little we are seeing more and more very creative “The Alexandra Event” clothing appearing at events and in photographs taken all over the state. It’s quite easy to do to, just head over to our spreadshirt shop at http://ax2017.spreadshirt.com.au/ and start creating.  Not only t-shirts, but aprons, hats, beanies, pants, shorts, backpacks, mugs, phone cases, umbrellas, bandanas and even a pillow case if you so desire!

The 10 months to MEGA event at Pakenham went off amazingly well on the 15th of January.  The next one is on at Wedderburn on the 18th of February and then another one at a new location each month.  Remember, there are prizes available to those who attend multiples of these events, so get out and explore the countryside, meet some locals and maybe win some prizes!

Finally, we would like to take this opportunity to introduce the organizing committee for Alexandra. It is a good mix of locals, new members and some experienced ones too.  The organizing committee this year is…

Ahomburg, LouiseAnn, TeamSmokeyBear, day1976, Clever Monkey, scody, º, xsurfergirlx and BernieH

Hoping you are all enjoying your geocaching and look forward to seeing you in November.

Regards

The Alexandra Event Organizing Committee.