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Casino NSW News

Max and Marie Maher – North Casino – Part 1

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Penny and Enid with Valerie Darryl, Max, Glen and Nola - Max and Marie Maher

Max and Marie Maher – North Casino – Part 1

 

By Helen Trustum

Spencer Maxwell Maher, known as Max, was born 18th January 1943, to parents Spencer known as “Penny” and Enid Maher of Goolmangar. Their family – Valerie, Nola, Max, Glen and Darryl. As Max was the eldest boy, he was given the Spencer name just like his father and Grandfather, Spencer Wesley Maher. A family trait that is handed down over the years and still carried on. Each boy in the Maher Family Tree that is born first carries the “Spencer” name.

Valerie, Max and Nola Maher - Max and Marie Maher

Valerie, Max and Nola Maher

Max grew up on the family farms at Koonorigan and Goolmangar. He always had a love for horses where he rode to school at Coffee Camp then later competing at Country Shows. Max remembers the February 1954 cyclone when raging waters from the River tore the Coffee Camp School and the local Community Hall at Coffee Camp from their stumps then flowed down the river out of site. Mr Lake, teacher in charge at Coffee Camp School and his wife Mrs Lake recalled the day when they were watching from the schoolhouse and saw it all unfold before their eyes. A document written by Mrs Lake stated: “The school went first tipping over in the water then hitting a tree and breaking up. The hall was shuddering and groaning, it did not want to go. Suddenly the walls opened up and out came the stools and wooden tables. Cups and plates bobbed up and down in the water and then the piano came out”.

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Max practising show jumping at home - Max and Marie Maher

Max practising show jumping at home

School lessons were held on the side verandah of the schoolhouse, the teachers dwelling. The piano was found, it was high up a tree further down the river on Reg Parmenter’s farm. The Honour Roll from the hall along with the Union Jack were rescued. A new hall and school were built.

Max remembers one day after school when he and Nola were saddling up their horses to ride home and Nola threw the saddle on where the stirrup hit their teacher Mr Blake on the head. He certainly had a bad knock. The schoolhouse was next door to Max’s Grandparents Percy and Casandra Swift.

Maher Family home on Nimbin Road - Max and Marie Maher.

Maher Family home on Nimbin Road

Shows were a feature of the Maher home, where it was not long before Max and Valerie were competing at the Nimbin Show. They would share the pony “Wally” between them. Their father would take them to the show in his 1948 Single Wheel Bedford. The vehicle was green with black mud guards purchased from W Robinson and Son in Lismore. Max and Valerie would compete for School Boy and School Girl of the Show. Many ribbons were won. Later Max’s father purchased a hunting mare for Max. Her name was “Silka”. Max was 12 years of age at the time. Jumps were set up on the farm where Max would practice. The pair competed at many shows around the district. Eventually this horse was sold to Earl Creighton for his son Guy to ride. Guy was 10 years of age at the time. They competed at Pony Club events and shows. Guy went on to be Australia’s Champion competing at Commonwealth Games.

Valerie riding Wally at the 1952 Nimbin Show copy

Valerie riding Wally at the 1952 Nimbin Show

Penny, Max’s father, was no stranger to the showground as he raced trotters for years. A few of the men that Max can remember are Charlie Langley, Barry King, Ned Coleman, Ray Essery Snr., Barry Troy, Cec Knight and Butcher Dunn. These men would always meet at Dave Wotherspoons Saddlery in North Lismore (near the Winsome Hotel) during the 1950’s.

The family loved attending functions in the Goolmangar Hall. Fancy dress or Christmas Tree concerts were always held.

Family dress up at Goolmangar Hall - 1950

Family dress up at Goolmangar Hall – 1950

Max always loved country music and from an early age he would be glued to the radio every Saturday morning at 10am listening to Radio Ranch on 2LM Lismore. Kevin Knapp was the announcer on Radio Ranch. Kevin went on to Tamworth where he started the Tamworth Country Music Festival. His cousin and good friend Ken Parmenter at that stage purchased a guitar, so Max was always up at the Parmenters farm learning to play the guitar. He would ride his push bike up to Kens and stay overnight. One particular weekend, Ken’s mother, Phyllis, who was Max’s Aunty, beckoned Max to have a look on his bed. There was a guitar waiting for him. What a great thrill. He was eight years old at the time. In later years his mother and father purchased him a guitar and one he still has (see photo). There was no stopping him now going from hall to hall singing and playing. Max would also sing and play at the concerts at Brunswick Heads, Ballina and Evans Head each Christmas. These concerts would raise money for the Life Saving Clubs in the district.

Penny and Max Maher

Penny and Max Maher

When it came time for High School in 1956 Max attended Lismore High along with good friend Ray Essery who lived at Booerie Creek. A friendship he has always held to this day. Ray went on to be one of the best known and loved poets in Australia. His humour and history of the area is second to none.

Max only attended one year at High School then returned to the family farm. The 125 Jersey cows were milked and the cream was picked up and taken to Norco in Lismore, by cream carrier Dick Hayes. At first a horse drawn plough was used on the farm then later a tractor was purchased to plough the paddocks for a paddock of corn. Max was so small on the tractor his head was hard to see above the mudguard on the back of the tractor.

In 1960 Max decided to give the farming life away and began working at Smith Ingots buying scrap metal. The firm gave Max a new Bedford as the job took him as far as Rockhampton in the north to Coffs Harbour in the south. After two years employment at Smiths Ingots, he began working at Bytheway’s BMC dealers in Lismore, selling cars.

Continued next issue.

 

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Casino NSW News

RESUMPTION OF SITTINGS AT CASINO COURT HOUSE WELCOME NEWS

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Casino Court House

RESUMPTION OF SITTINGS AT CASINO COURT HOUSE WELCOME NEWS

 

The resumption of sittings at Casino Court House tomorrow after it was closed following the 2022 floods is welcome news for the local community according to Clarence Nationals MP, Richie Williamson who advocated very strongly for the Court House to reopen as a matter of priority.

Mr Williamson delivered a Private Member’s Statement in the NSW Parliament in May last year followed by a letter to the NSW Attorney General, Michael Daley supporting a Mayoral Minute from Richmond Valley Mayor, Robert Mustow seeking urgent priority to be given to expediting flood recovery works at the Court House given the impacts on the local community and economy.

“Whilst the number one priority of flood recovery should always be about supporting flood victims, restoring key community assets should be a high priority,” Mr Williamson said.

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“As I said at the time, the closure of the Casino Court House was having a negative impact on the local community and economy with the nearest sittings being heard at Kyogle and Lismore and disadvantaging many in the community.

“Its closure impacted on low socio-economic and high Indigenous communities, some of whom have very limited transport and were struggling to attend because public transport is almost non-existent.

“It was also impacting family members needed at court as support people as well as having an operational impact on our local police force because local police officers were required to travel to Kyogle or Lismore for appearances and court hearings.

“Economic impacts on Casino were also being felt because of the lack of court days, which would normally bring to the community a high number of professional people to the community, where they would quite often stay for the night.

“I thank the NSW Attorney General for his assistance in ensuring the Casino Court House is back up and running.

“It is a great shot of confidence for the community and is part of the healing and recovery process that is so important for my community,” Mr Williamson concluded.

 

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Casino Beef Week

Casino Beef Week 2024 Feature

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Casino Beef Week 2024

Casino Beef Week 2024 Feature

Welcome to the 2024 edition of The Casino Food Co-Op Casino Beef Week, a celebration that not only showcases the best of Australian beef but also unites the community of Casino, known as the Beef Capital of Australia. As we embark on our 42nd year, we continue to cherish the tradition that has become a cornerstone of our identity and an annual
highlight for both locals and visitors.
This year, Casino Beef Week, running from May 18th to 26th, promises an array of events designed to entertain, educate, and celebrate our rich agricultural heritage. From our Cattle Competitions, Industry Events, and community fun, we have something for everyone. Our program is packed with over 100 events including industry seminars, art exhibitions, live music, and, of course, our massive Beef Week Saturday featuring the Brenda Armfield Street Parade.
At the heart of Beef Week is our commitment to the agricultural community. We celebrate the hard work and dedication of our farmers, who play a crucial role in our region’s economy and way of life. This festival is an opportunity for them to showcase their top-quality produce, share their expertise, and engage with the public about the importance of sustainable farming.
We are also excited to introduce new events this year focusing on our community. Sunday the 19th is a day of Country Music and Mullets at Casino RSM Club, and Monday night is our brand-new Steaks and Mates Dinner at the Clydesdale Steakhouse with a focus on Men’s Mental Health. This is in addition to brand new classes on our Wednesday and Saturday Cattle Shows, which will now include Heifer Classes with our Led Steers.
I would like to extend a special thanks to all our sponsors, volunteers, and community members who have contributed tirelessly to make this event possible. Your enthusiasm and support reflect the spirit of cooperation and community that Casino Beef Week exemplifies.
Join us in celebrating the pride and spirit of Casino at The Casino Food Co-op Casino Beef Week 2024. We look forward to welcoming you to our town and sharing with you the vibrancy and warmth of our community. Let’s make this year’s Beef Week the best one yet!

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Business News

Crazy Cow comes to Casino

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Crazy Cow Cafe Casino

Crazy Cow comes to Casino

 

By Samantha Elley

If Kristy Gill had her way, she would cook 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“I used to advertise on Facebook and made cakes for my friends and family,” she said.

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From there, Kristy opened the Riverview Café in Coraki but when the opportunity came up for her to move her business to Casino, she took it.

And Crazy Cow Café was born.

“I figured it was a good name to suit the beef capital,” she laughed.

After a lot of hard work to get the business up and running, Kristy opened her doors on Tuesday last week.

“We do lots of take home meals for people who don’t have time to cook, so they can take them home and put them in the freezer,” Kristy said.

“We do honey chicken, fried rice, home made lasagne, spaghetti bolognese and sausages and veges.”

Crazy Cow Cafe Casino Cupcakes

Crazy Cow Cafe

The café also serves up hamburgers, chicken wraps, salad sandwiches and all the deep fried favourites.

“We will eventually do pizzas as well,” said Kristy.

“We will be looking into gluten free cooking with our cakes and slices and we have lactose free milk for our coffees.

“We try and cater for everyone.”

With her five youngest kids in Casino Public School, only a walk away, Kristy knows she will have no problems with young helpers in the shop after school.

“My five year old has already asked if he can come and help,” she laughed.

“I hope he continues with that same attitude as he gets older.”

The Crazy Cow Café is located at 117 Barker Street, next to the Commonwealth Bank.

 

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