Posted by Margaret Mason on Feb 23, 2022
The meeting was held at Cilantro and on Zoom. The chair welcomed Graham Chad who was a visitor for a very short period of time as he was inducted minutes later. President Helen then reminded members about the fellowship evening on 25 February, the Storm Recovery Festival on 27 February and the District conference on 25 and 26 March.
The speaker was our very own Linda O’Brien. She spoke about her memories of Albert Park Lake.  She gave a history of the area and the creation of the lake. The lagoon near the mouth of the Yarra was excavated for a lake in 1875. Linda then identified and spoke about several sites around the lake. The site behind the current Junction Oval is a sacred Aboriginal sited has the Bunerong Corroboree Tree which is over 300 years old.
The Power House where the Rowing Club was housed from 1931 to 1939. It was closed because of the second world war. In 1958, because of severe lack of funds, the Powerhouse was converted for dancing. This was highly successful up till 1976 when it was closed for dancing. The golf club at Albert Park Lake was formed in1897 and is one of the oldest golf clubs in Melbourne. In 1931, it expanded from a 9 hole course to an 18 hole course. In 1947, the course became a public course.
Linda then went to describe in detail the history of car racing around Albert Park Lake. There were 2 failed attempts in 1934 and 1937. However, in 1953, it finally succeeded as the Australian Grand Prix circuit. Personalities such as Stirling Moss, Reg Hunt,and Bob Jane  raced in that circuit which pre-dates the present modern grand prix of 1993. There were also a number of water sport in the lake , such as dinghy racing, and speed boat racing as well as fishing.
Another significant icon was Rob’s Carousel which was a “must attend “ to be seen place, in the ‘olden days’. Linda then concluded by telling us what Albert Park means to her. It is fishing and not catching fish, sailing, watching car racing and football and of course dancing in Powerhouse and dining at Rob’s Carousel.
Many members felt nostalgic as Linda’s presentation brought back their memories of growing up in Melbourne and having similar similar experiences at Albert Park.