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!
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.
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.
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!