The Tewantin Noosa Bowls Club was formed in 1949. Tewantin was essentially a small village at the time with families recovering from the war.
Electricity had only been connected to the township some two years before and in 1952 the local Progress Association was writing to the Council complaining about cattle wandering in the main street of Tewantin, Poinciana Avenue.
Noosa was a little known holiday resort. Buses conveyed people from the Cooroy Railway Station to the Royal Mail Hotel at Tewantin.
At 85 Poinciana Avenue, Alf (Pop) Spriggett had his own private one rink bowling green in his backyard. Players came to his place for social bowls at the weekend. It became a popular pastime and from this the need for a bowling club grew.
Some 40 men were prepared to act as guarantors for a loan obtained from the E.S & A. Bank at Cooroy.
Crosscut saws and a bulldozer were used to clear the paperbarks and mangroves that covered the area.
Land was purchased for 316 Pounds 18 Shillings and presented a real challenge. It was swampy, had a gully running through it and a mangrove creek on its eastern boundary. There was no fresh water to be had and this was to prove a real problem for many years.
After many hours of labour, clearing the site, some 1200 cubic yards of fill was obtained to fill the gully and build up the green foundation. Town water was not available so several wells were sunk to obtain the necessary water for maintaining the green.
The first clubhouse was but a small cottage about the size of a living room and some distance from this was the outside dunny. From these humble beginnings, after 50 years, the Club has evolved to having three magnificent greens and a clubhouse of great comfort and size.
The club became part of the Gympie-Widgee Bowls Association and remained so until joining the Sunshine Coast District Bowls Association in 1962.
In those years the Gympie Times reported on the many successful bowls days held. One noteworthy bowling achievement of the fledgling club was the defeat of Gympie in the final of 1955-56 Rink Champion of Champions.
“Congratulations to the sea-side boys; they must have played great bowls” said the bowls correspondent.
The Gympie Times of the 02/04/1960 had a comprehensive report headed “Tewantin Noosa Bowling Club’s Big Day”.
The article commenced “Official opening on Saturday night of the extensions to the clubhouse and the new cold room represented a big step forward.” ……”Nineteen teams competed for valuable trophies in the afternoon followed by a high tea at 6 0’clock which featured a delectable array of seafood.” ……then “Music was provided by piano accordions. It was a night which will live long in the memory.”
Speaker after speaker was of the opinion that one more green was more or less a necessity as it was felt that this was one of the coming bowling centres on the North Coast with the influx of tourists occurring.
It was to be nine years before a second green was established and a fulltime greenkeeper appointed.
The 70’s proved to be busy in more ways than one. Being President of a Club has its rewards, but it also brings a share of problems. Successive Presidents in the 70’s had more than their share.
It was the unfortunate situation that a difficult and belligerent person impeded the Club’s progress. Vexatious litigation was often initiated by him. The Club had to go to the court in regards to the shifting of property boundary pegs and the personal assault of its office bearers.
In one President’s time, Number 2 Green was poisoned on 3 occasions. It is to the Club’s credit that these obstacles were overcome and Club progressed.
1976 and 1977 were busy years as both greens were replanted with tifdwarf grass. The President of the day reported about the replanting of Number 1 Green, “It gave me a great thrill to see 28 volunteers on the green at 5.30 am. This number included 3 ladies.”
As the Club membership increased the inevitable occurred. A new clubhouse was erected and located on the northern side of the existing greens.
It was opened in 1980 and the outlay for the building with furniture and fittings amounted to about $200,000.
The first permanent Bar Manager was appointed and the Club continued to grow, with visits from other clubs and tourists being a regular feature. The 80’s proved to be boom years. Two highly successful bowling carnivals were introduced – the Easter Carnival and the Colts Carnival.
The Club has always prided itself on its greens and they have often been sought after for bowling events. One of the biggest events hosted by the Club was the Test Series between the ACT and Queensland.
Men and women club bowlers both have a proud record over the years and the numerous honour boards and Pennants on display in the clubhouse bear witness to this.
However, if anything made Tewantin Noosa unique, it was its reputation over the years of being a hospitable club where people were invited to share in some of the local seafood. For years, working bees started early on Friday mornings, filleting and preparing fresh fish, later to be cooked for free distribution to Friday night patrons.
From the 80’s into the 90’s the scale of business and the necessary management of the Club changed significantly. The advent of poker machines brought an increase in income.
A Secretary Manager and Administration Officer were appointed. Wide ranging extensions to the clubhouse became necessary and possible. A third green was established and lights installed.
The most recent change in management has been the amalgamation of the Men’s Club with the Women Associate members.
As well as being a contributor to the community in providing a popular leisure facility and social centre, the Club has had a proud history of helping out others in times of need. Successful appeals have been conducted for Olympics Games athletes, flood victims, Meals on Wheels, the Surf Club, and local schools, to name but a few.
The old Clubhouse was finally knocked down 10 years ago and the existing clubhouse now looks across to another new building housing Greenkeeper’s equipment, bowls locker rooms and additional bathroom facilities. Bowling members past and present can rightfully say thanks to the management, committee members and the many others, who with industry and foresight have contributed to the 50 years of progress.
CONSTITUTION AND BY LAWS