On Saturday 7 January, members and friends of the Coffs Regional Community Gardens had a social event to welcome in the New Year. Organised by Natasha and Digby, new members who joined in 2022 after moving to Coffs from Sydney, the gathering allowed a number of new and existing members to meet each other, mingle and chat in a relaxed environment outside of working bees, committee meetings or in passing as each work on their plots. 
In all about 25 people attended, including 9 kids of various ages from toddlers to teens. A kids craft station was set up with painting, colouring and felting activities available, but the younger children spent most of their time exploring the area, climbing trees and making friends with ladybirds and other tiny critters. 
The Gardens sponsored a great spread of ingredients for wood fired pizzas. Phil got the pizza oven fired up and everyone took turns at creating pizzas to share around. Phil managed the cooking and Digby completed the production line by slicing and passing on the finished goods. All were delicious. Members brought home made olives, cakes and biscuits and the atmosphere was friendly and welcoming. Conversations primarily revolved around finding out about each other, how members got involved in the Gardens and food! 
It was the first Gardens event of its kind in the memory of the people who attended, many of whom joined in recent years. Needless to say, the past couple of years have made it difficult to host parties such as this and everyone enjoyed the opportunity. The shared responsibility of preparing pizzas and sharing the cooked result is representative of the Gardens philosophy and culture.  Feedback was very positive and unanimous in wishes to do it again soon, and regularly. 

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