2017 President's Fly In
The 2017 President's Fly In will be held in Renmark South Australia 23-24 SEP 2017. Keep checking back for updates.
DRAFT PROGRAM OF EVENTS
2017 President’s Fly In
23-24 September 2017
Renmark is a town of around 7000 people located on the Murray River some 250km NE of Adelaide. The region was first explored by Captain Charles Sturt in 1830 and a settlement started to develop from 1887, the town being proclaimed in 1904. Today the region is best known for the production of citrus, grapes stone fruit, nuts, wheat and wool but we think we have found some more interesting things to look at.
Getting to Renmark: Obviously an Airtourer is the best way to get to Renmark and AVGAS is available at the airfield (credit card swipe bowser). Sadly, you are a bit late to catch a train to Renmark because the line closed in 1983. Mildura is the nearest town with airline services and is well connected to MEL, SYD and ADL. Renmark is around 135km by road from Mildura. Alternatively, Renmark is 260km by road from Adelaide and you will almost certainly find cheaper flights to there.
Ground Transport: We will have a suitable sized bus for the weekend and it will provide transport to and from the airfield and to the various activities for the weekend. The pick-up/drop off point in town will be the Renmark Hotel which is centrally located.
FRIDAY 22 SEP
Early Arrivals: We think this will be worth the effort to arrive early.
Twenty Third Street Distillery is the new incarnation of a century-old landmark at Twenty Third Street, Renmark, in South Australia’s fertile Riverland. The distillery was built by Barossa firm Chateau Tanunda in 1914 to take advantage of burgeoning Riverland harvests. No expense was spared in the design and construction of this imposing building and its production plant. However, Chateau Tanunda had sunk too much into it and found itself sinking into financial ruin. This could have been disastrous for the local grape growers. They’d quickly become dependent on the distillery buying their fruit.
But beneath the gloom was opportunity. Could the growers cut out the middle man and run the distillery themselves? Around 130 fruit growers banded together to form The Renmark Growers’ Distillery Company Limited and purchase the facilties. It was the first cooperative of its kind in Australia, a great success and a huge boost to the local Riverland community.
A series of mergers and takeovers unfortunately led to a rapid decline in activity at Twenty Third Street, until it ceased all production in 2002. But the spirit lingered. In 2016, fuelled by fresh creative passion, the facility reopened as the Twenty Third Street Distillery producing a range of Brandy, Gin, Vodka and Whisky.
1330: Bus departs accommodation to the Distillery.
1400: Twenty Third Street Distillery tour and tasting $25. Following the tour, the bus will return you to your accommodation.
1800: Meet for dinner at the Renmark Club. It is only a short walk from most accommodation options. The Club has been around since 1909 and (according to their own web site) opened as a “Gentlemen’s Club”, that possibly had a different meaning back then... The current facilities are located on the riverfront in the heart of town and look great.
SATURDAY 23 SEP
Morning activities TBA but we can go out to the airfield to conduct a short flight to look at the local sights by air and meet today’s arrivals.
1200: Bus departure from the airfield if arriving today. The bus will take you to your accommodation to check in quickly and then we have a full afternoon of activities.
1300: Bus departure:
Ruston’s Roses: This is Australia’s largest rose garden with 50,000 bushes, a café and classic car collection. We will be here for about an hour and a half so a good opportunity to have lunch at the café but save room for our next stop. $10.
1430: Bus departs for a 30 minute trip NE of Renmark to the Woolshed Brewery overlooking the river. We will be taken on a tour of the brewery and have the history of the Wilkandene, a famous sheep and wheat property, explained $10. There will of course be time to sample some of the fine beers and ciders that are produced on site.
1700: Depart for accommodation.
1900: Dinner at Renmark Hotel
SUNDAY 24 SEP
0930: Bus pick up from accommodation.
1000: Airfield Brunch and departures. The Riverland Sport Aviation Club will be hosting us for brunch prior to setting off.
Renmark Hotel: A historic community owned hotel that had an air spotters tower manned 24/7 in WW2, where “Breaker” Morant rode his horse into the bar and where Sir Charles Kingsford Smith stayed when he flew the Southern Cross to Renmark (currently no rooms available FRI night but check nearer the time).
Renmark Club: One and two bedroom apartments.
EconoLodge: Motel with free continental breakfast.