THERE’S still the $11,000 in funding to come from the Federal Government but after the success of last Saturday night’s Lennie Gwyther Legend fundraiser, the committee plans to place the order for the life-sized, bronze statue.
And the campaign, to locate a statue in the middle of town, has been heartily endorsed by the Gwyther family, including sisters Beryl and Lita, and daughter Mary, who were there on the night at the Grandstand Function Rooms.
The night was highlighted by a reprise of the Leongatha Primary School’s Lennie The Legend musical, with several excerpts arranged by Jess Stein and the students.
The Coodabeens’ vocalist, Greg Champion then took over the microphone and royally entertained the packed crowd until well after 10.30pm; with a rich program of music, stories and humour.
“It was a fantastic night and we’re just so grateful to the generous community of Leongatha and district for coming out,” said Glenn Wright, praising the main organiser of the event, Peter Watchorn and his team.
“But I think it’s just a unique thing, the story of Lennie Gwyther, something we can all be proud of and which, over the years, will be a great source of pride as well.
“It’s really hard to imagine how a kid of 9, back in 1932, could have got it into his head to ride all that way, and to do so successfully.”
The night is likely to net the appeal over $6000 and together with some local corporate donations of $1000, is likely to get the campaign up to where it needs to be.
“I think we can at least go ahead and order the statue now. He’ll be on his horse, which is what the family and everyone wants. And, we’ll get the chance to approve the design before they go ahead and bronze it,” said Glenn.
“It was just a great community night and that’s what this is all about,” he said.
Lennie statue on order after fundraising success