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Monday, 21 May 2018
Page: 4047

Mr HOGAN (PageDeputy Speaker) (16:01): I'd like to congratulate the Lismore Gem and Lapidary Club on this year's 28th Lismore gem festival, better known as GEMFEST, for another successful event. Around 7,000 people, many from interstate and some from overseas, attended the two-day event that is held annually at the Lismore Showground. This equates to tens and possibly hundreds of thousands of dollars flying into the Lismore economy as dealers, stallholders and visitors from out of town need accommodation and places to eat. It is the biggest annual lapidary show in Australia. Each year it showcases a great array of gems and jewels. There are specific activities for children, where they get the chance to fossick for gems. Special mention must go to the organising committee—President Rodney Knight, Vice President Jenny Vryenhoek, Treasurer Bruce Copper, Secretary Lesley Cann, Pieter Vryenhoek, Marcus Bebb, Leonie Hyde, Belinda Holtby, Liz Weatherburn, Arleene Davies, Val Armstrong, Steve Payne, Ivan Turner, Gary Thompson and Peter Cann. Also, thank you to the sponsors who make this possible: Summerland Credit Union; WIN network; The Northern Star; 2LM; Bunyip's Great Outdoors, Lismore; Gemcuts Ballina; Chandler's Betta Home Living, Lismore; and Richmond Sand and Gravel. Karen and I thoroughly enjoyed our time there.