SLOVENIAN ASSOCIATION PLANICA, SPRINGVALE
Forty years ago a group of Slovenians had an unofficial meeting in the garage of Stan Lesnjak to discuss the wish to establish a Slovenianl club in the SE suburbs of Melbourne. The initial idea of this meeting became a reality in 1972.
In September 1972 the very first meeting was called, with 52 enthusiastic Slovenians founding the club’ Planica’. The very first committee was formed with the aim to invite as many members as possible to organise dances and to be responsible for the social life of Slovenians. Numbers of attendances over the years is proof that the original idea brought a rich harvest as every idea bore fruitf, with 40 years of existence of the club is proof of its success. A land sale agent was sought and the wishes for establishment of a club were realized..
In November 1973, land was purchased. Three trusted members - the thrustees, together with the ANZ bank, made it possible to receive a loan and the works began. The foundations stones of today's Planica were laid.
In 1974 the building committee was established. The barracks on the land were transformed into a kitchen and the Slovenian language school, where more than 70 students were enrolled. We came together as one big family.
The bocce group was established in 1975 and the bowling alleys were built on the open land.
The mothers' section took care of the school, fed the workers and attended to the visitors.
In year 1977 we participated at the Australia Day Festival in Dandenong. We participated with Slovenian music, folk dancing and traditional Slovenian foods and over time, have attained a great respect among the Australian audience and other participating nationalities.
It was very busy in the working group: the children's playground was built and the tennis courts were prepared for competitions. Other sports were introduced as well.
The members of Planica club and their friends were bonding and formed great friendships many of which have held firm over the years. Enthusiastic working bee were held with much voluntary assistance.
Established was the Drama Group
The children of the Slovenian school have performed at many cultural programs and made the audiences happy.
Plans for the new building were organized, as well as those for a new hall, dining room, kitchen and all other necessary rooms including toilets, showers, office etc.
In 1977 there was publication in the periodical ‘Vestnik”, of the first article about the developments at Planica, under the title ‘Novice iz Planice”. The youth of Planica also participated, contributing articles, such as ‘We're the Slovenian school children’.
‘Novice’ was published from 1977 to 1979. The main contributor and editor was the then teacher of Slovenian school, Mrs Lucija Srnec.
In 1979 the club received a building permit and work started with the delivering of materials.
Until 1981, all gatherings were in the sheds and dances took place in big tents.
There was much enthusiasm, happiness, expectation and hopes for the soon to be completed new club building.
In 1981, the concrete slab was poured.
In 1982, the brick work started. In August of that year, our diligent bricklayers placed the last brick (150.000) of them. Following the building work, the bricklayers and other workers received honorary acknowledgements.
The aim of the club was, and still is, the promotion of social and cultural life of the Slovenian members through friendly gatherings, cultural activities such as singing and drama and sports.
Slovenian language school and encouragement awards for cultural development, including; folk dancing groups, music bands, the bowling section and the hunters and anglers groups, were formed
The newsletter’ Novice’ was established.
Election of the first female president of a Slovenian club in Australia
Completion of the asphalt parking area
Organisation of cultural program's and social dances
Celebration of Mothers' and Fathers' Days
MORE ON HISTORY OF PLANICA