Bill Anderson praises team of volunteers who stage Rathmines Catalina Festival

WITH all of the big-ticket attractions, displays and slick entertainment on offer at the Rathmines Catalina Festival on Sunday, it was easy to forget the event was staged by a team of volunteers.

Chief among them was the Rathmines Catalina Memorial Park Association whose president, Bill Anderson, knows just how big a logistical exercise the event was.

That's why on Monday, having finished the clean up at Rathmines Park, and after breathing a sigh of relief at having hosted a successful festival, Mr Anderson was full of praise for the selfless workers.

"We had about 20 volunteers from RCMPA involved, and then there were the service clubs - Toronto Sunrise Rotary, Wangi Lions, Morisset Rotary, Morisset Lions and Warners Bay Rotary," Mr Anderson said.

"We've very grateful to them, and I'm very proud of the volunteers," he said.

"They manned the gates, assisted with parking, manned the information stalls at the gate, and helped us to bump in more than 50 stalls and it all went seamlessly."

The festival commemorates the history of the former World War II RAAF Base in the town. And this year, the organisers opted to make a few changes to the festival to better reflect that World War II heritage.

That included performances by the 23-piece Royal Australian Navy Big Band and The Metro Players who performed wartime songs by the likes of the Andrews Sisters.

"They were outstanding, and the music was terrific," Mr Anderson said.

Aircraft were again the big drawcards. There was the Paul Bennet Airshows aerobatic display, and a range of aircraft including, for the first time, a pair of DC-3s, flew by.

"To see those graceful old birds lumbering around was quite special," Mr Anderson said.

About 8000 people attended the festival, he said.

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