Bar brimming with memories
JENNY Lucas had no idea what to expect when she first stepped behind the Comet Benefit Rodeo bar, but reflecting on her past two decades of service, she can't help but let out a boom of laughter.
Joined by her late husband, Vince, the pair first volunteered to help out their friends Bob and Linda McGhee 20 years ago.
And just as she has done every year, bar one, Jenny will return to her post from the early hours of Saturday morning until 2am Sunday to serve her community at the weekend's 20th anniversary event.
Eager to see the eyes of the Camp Quality kids light up as the local cowboys take them on a tour through the ring, Jenny said she could not help but be lured back each year.
"I just enjoy it, I can't explain it," Jenny said.
"There are lots of stories, but you wouldn't want to print them," she laughed.
"It's just wonderful to be able to serve and watch people and watch people enjoy themselves and donate, without blueing. It's a real friendly night."
Jenny is more than bar staff, she is a fixture of the event and in the few times trouble has stirred, she is happy to stand in and mediate.
"We have never had any had any trouble whatsoever, blues or anything. I don't know whether it's because I jump in and stop it and they have respect for me, I don't know," she said.
"Normally most times I can say 'that's enough, you get packing down to your tent', and we don't have a problem, and it always turns out to be a fun family night."
Juggling a small Comet cattle property, Vinjen, between her role as Comet State School teacher's aide, Jenny said the rodeo was another opportunity to engage with the community she loved, and catch up with old friends. She said she enjoyed returning each year to fulfil the role her and her husband would do side by side, year in, year out, and to live by the motto her husband embodied.
"Vince passed away 10 years ago this year, and so I have taken it on and kept it going myself," she said.
"And his motto was, and my motto is, 'no matter where you live you make the best of your town and help where you can, no matter how big or small'."