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Newsletter - 1st June 2009

News From Fire Dragon Australia

2008 NEWS - PART II

Spring brought visitors from Townsville, as Sifu Scuffell was accompanied by five of his Family members to a chilly Canberra to teach a weekend seminar. The spared no effort to teach Shaking Crane, Monkey and Tiger techniques and forms to a good turn out from Fire Dragon, with two Karate students (Sensei Steven Fekete and one of his students) joining in the first (public) day. Sifu Hardy and Fire Dragon Australia are again very grateful to Sifu Scuffell for his teaching, for his integrity, and his sharing!

Participants at the 2008 White Crane Course (Sifu Scuffell 2nd from left, front row)
Participants at the 2008 White Crane Course (Sifu Scuffell 2nd from left, front row)
Sifu Hardy with Sifu Scuffell and his Family Members
Sifu Hardy with Sifu Scuffell and his Family Members

Not long afterwards, Master Hardy performed his first serious right hand break since cracking his ulnar, on 19 September for the Canberra Times. The break went through without a hitch, with 3 concrete slabs smashed through fire, and no damage. Preparation, mind, and Ch’i!

Master Hardy was contacted by the ACT Chief Minister’s Department to conduct demonstrations as part of the Chief Minister’s “Groovin’ in the City” celebrations. Despite the fact that Fire Dragon had two 35-40 minute demonstrations on each day, and the performances were scheduled for Thursdays – 23 October, and 13 November, perhaps a dozen Fire Dragon students made the considerable effort to help out, and found a good reception from the public, particularly at the November presentation. Television and newspapers were present and did provide good coverage, acknowledging a sterling effort from all. Stephen Wells managed his first public concrete break (with more than he had done before), and Sifu Bellchambers broke his way through the bottoms of several bottles.

Stephen's first public break
Stephen's first public break
Stephen going all the way through!
Stephen going all the way through!
Some of the November demonstration team
Some of the November demonstration team
Master Hardy defending
Master Hardy defending
And making sure of the opponent
And making sure of the opponent
Sifu Bellchambers hits the bottle again!
Sifu Bellchambers hits the bottle again!
Master Hardy cracking concrete
Master Hardy cracking concrete
Wreathed in fire
Wreathed in fire

Master Hardy decided to award a scholarship to a Fire Dragon member who has need of some assistance to train, and who has some capacity to give back to the Dragon, and in fact was able to offer two scholarships with student support. He and Sifu Bellchambers interviewed 6 students from the Ainslie and Queanbeyan Club – all were good candidates, but in the end, only two could be chosen. While all candidates were notified of the results, a formal announcement will be made later in January 2009.

Friday 19th December saw the Fire Dragon Christmas Dinner. Some 25 people arrived, including partners – it was a great meal, and a very good way to round off a very busy but productive year. Master Hardy presented certificates of achievement to several outstanding students. Michael O’Connor; Scott Savage; Deborah Patrick; Bernard Kilimnick; Tara James, and Ray Fyans all, in different ways, showed aspects of the Dragon worth recognising formally. Which of course, is not to say that many other students have also achieved and contributed in very important ways to the success of the White Dragon in Australia in 2008.

At the Christmas Dinner
At the Christmas Dinner
Also enjoying dinner
Also enjoying dinner
And face-feeding
And face-feeding
And the occasional smile
And the occasional smile
The rest after the feeding frenzy
The rest after the feeding frenzy
Some serious discussions
Some serious discussions
And the photo that's safe to show!
And the photo that's safe to show!

Master Hardy gave Sifu Bellchambers his Third Higher Level certificate, as Grandmaster St Charles had authorised the promotion. To say Sifu Bellchambers was surprised is understating things! Master Hardy was himself then on the receiving end of a surprise when Sifu Bellchambers gave him a small jade plant – grown from a leaf from the late Grandmaster Pai’s jade plant growing in Florida. The little piece of our heritage is now safe and growing in its own pot. Australia is truly part of the Pai Lum Family!

Master Hardy presents Sifu Bellchambers with his 3rd Higher Level certificate
Master Hardy presents Sifu Bellchambers with his 3rd Higher Level certificate
Dr Pai's Jade Plant is now in Australia - the Australian Dragons are more strongly linked than ever!
Dr Pai's Jade Plant is now in Australia - the Australian Dragons are more strongly linked than ever!

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