ELVIS has left the city and he and a fair few fellas who look like his poor cousins are coming to a place near you.
The annual mountain bike ride for the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service has headed out of the Country Music Capital bound for Parkes, where everyone knows the King still rules.
The seven-day charity ride begins today from the central west town that now calls the annual Elvis Festival its biggest tourist hit.
The 44 riders and eight support crew will weave their way across the countryside, and about 700km, through Peak Hill, Wellington, Dunedoo, Coolah and Quirindi before reaching Tamworth next Friday.
According to regional co-ordinator Barry Walton the ride will start with a bit of rock’n’roll, including a day ride to The Dish, the famous telescope outside Parkes.
A dress-up Elvis night at a local pub is also on the cards.
“The ride is targeting $60,000 this year and over the past 12 years it has raised in excess of $600,000 for the rescue service,” Mr Walton said.
Return petitions to have a say
DEPUTY mayor Russell Webb is calling on public members to hand in their signed petitions to save the winch by the end of next Friday.
Community members can drop off signed petitions at the Tamworth Regional Council office located at 437 Peel St.
Petitions will be collated and then given to member for Tamworth Kevin Anderson who will present them to the state’s health minister Jillian Skinner.
Ten thousand signatures are required for the matter to be discussed on the floor of the NSW parliament.
On July 22 Ms Skinner ordered the Tamworth base of the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service cease winching operations, citing safety concerns.
Mr Anderson meet with Ms Skinner and key stakeholders earlier this week to seek a review of the change, but the minister refused to budge.
Anyone that hasn’t already signed the petition but wishes to do so can download it at northerndailyleader.com.au