Youth Centre 2016
Friday 29 and Saturday 30 July saw 39 young people from 28 different nationalities descend on the Cairndale Hotel, Dumfries.
They were there to attend the Lions international Youth Centre hosted by Dumfries Lions Club. A comprehensive programme, involving visits to Glasgow, Edinburgh and various local sites in Dumfries and Galloway, had been organised by Lion Jim and Ann McCormack and Lion Jim and Linda Nelson.
Saturday began with a familiarisation walk round Dumfries led by Lions Club members. In the afternoon the group visited nearby Mabie Forest and after a “getting to know you” walk round the forest and a number of team building and fun games organised, by the local YMCA, they were treated to an excellent barbecue provided by local Lions.
Sunday saw them having a go at curling and skating at the Icebowl. In the evening they attended a Burns Supper Taster where they were entertained by a local young piper and the “Address to the Haggis”which was translated by Norwegian guest Eivind.
Monday was taken up by a trip to Glasgow where we visited the Transport Museum and the magnificent Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.
Tuesday was an all action day and involved the students taking part in 6 different disciplines at the Galloway Adventure Centre at Loch Ken.This involved archery, laser quest among the trees, windsurfing, dinghy sailing, standing paddle boards and, the piece de resistance, the long waterslide. All who took part had a great day behaving like big kids.
The adventure day was completed with a barbecue laid on by Dalbeattie Lions Club who are due very big vote of thanks from all concerned. The highlight of the evening was the attendance of the Galloway Pipes and Drums who did a superb job entertaining the group. The students were allowed to try their hand at piping and drumming and the sight of a strapping 6’5” Norwegian trying to blow up a set of pipes usually played by a 5’3” wee lassie was indeed a sight to behold.
Wednesday saw the group taking part in local community projects. One group helped tidy up and prepare flower beds in an old play area in a primary school in the town. The others helped create a new footpath for visitors to Ellisland Farm a former home of Robert Burns. The efforts of both groups were greatly appreciated at both venues.
Thursday was a full day visit to Edinburgh arranged by the City of Edinburgh Lions. The National Museum of Scotland and the Castle were high on the list of places to see. The highlight was of course, the world renowned Edinburgh Military Tattoo with its massed bands and massed pipes and drums. A long very satisfying day saw us returning to Dumfries at 3.00 A.M.
On Friday a Civic Reception was arranged by the Town Council. The group were welcomed by the Provost of the town who allowed them to try on his ceremonial robes and chain of office.
Saturday was a quiet day to give time for rehearsals for the concert being planned by the students.
A Ceilidh and Dinner held in the evening was a great success. All the guests danced the night away and the sight of the 39 and other visitors attempting an Orcadian Strip the Willow (Google it) will linger long in the memory.
Sunday was the day for packing, rehearsing and finishing off country presentations. The concert was an amazing, entirely put together and performed by the students. The talent on display from pianists, guitarists, singers, dancers, poetry readers, drummers and jugglers would grace any TV talent show.
Monday, the last day, saw them all up and ready to go at 7.00 A.M. for the journey to Manchester Airport where we were met by Pauline Hodgkinson of BS and her airport team.
Three years of intensive planning and ten very busy days were suddenly over.
We were all sad to see these wonderful friendly young people leave.
We wish to thank our own Club, Dumfries, and the other Clubs from NE who supported us so well.