Winning ideas

An avalanche of last-minute entries delighted organisers but left the judging panel for a community ideas competition with some hard decisions to make.

Twenty-four groups and individuals applied for a slice of a $20,000 prize pool being offered by Community-Led Development group Connect Cromwell, after only five entries had been received a few days before the closing date of August 6.

 Proposals were invited for projects that were good for the community and brought people together, Connect Cromwell facilitator Tania Partridge said.

Themes among those received were fairly evenly spread across sport, health and wellbeing, the environment and arts and culture.

“We are really pleased at the response and blown away by people’s fantastic ideas.

There were bikes, horses, shared meals, ballet, hockey, expos, singing, running, trees and lots more in there.

Sadly, we can’t help everyone but there are certainly some great opportunities for fun and learning coming Cromwell’s way. We will be very proud to have helped kick-start these projects,” she said.

All unsuccessful parties would be given guidance on how to best progress their idea including advice on seeking funding from other sources.

After much deliberation the top proposals had now been selected and these groups and individuals were being invited to present their ideas to a panel at an informal event on Wednesday, August 25.

The panel consists of Connect Cromwell Steering group members Wally Sanford and Jessie Sutherland, the group’s Department of Internal Affairs advisor, Rachael Thomas, Cromwell College teacher Karen Gallagher and hotel general manager, Glen Christiansen.

The panel agreed that all the ideas had merit and selecting finalists had not been an easy task.

“All applications had the best interests of Cromwell in mind.”

They were well thought out and promote and enhance Cromwell”, Glen said. The event, at The Gate Conference Centre from 7pm to 9pm, is open to the public. Entry is free however those intending to come are asked to book by emailing as seating is limited.

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