Swells of colour added to Maroochydore boardrider’s club
  • Thursday 12 May 2022

The North Shore Boardriders Club has a bold, bright and beachy new look to make the clubhouse as iconic as its history thanks to funding by Sunshine Coast Council.

Founded in the late ’60s, the boardriders Club Inc. is one of the longest running in Australia.

Sunshine Coast Council Division 4 Councillor Joe Natoli said the club had grown from a group of Redcliffe surfers heading to the north coast beaches 50 years ago to more than 100 members today.

“Over the years, clubs like this have grown from grommets to veterans participating in club days, state competitions and keeping our community active and outdoors,” Cr Natoli said.

“When council was approached six months ago by long-time member and artist Owen Cavanagh to give the clubhouse a splash of colour, I was on board – metaphorically speaking.

“For the last two weeks I’ve seen glimpses of the mural coming to life thanks to the artistic hands of Owen and his team including Shauna Hill a local First Nations artist, Steven Bordonaro from Crazy Horse Studios and Rod Tickle from East Coast Airbrushing.  

“Each artist brings a different technique and uniqueness to the mural using paintbrushes, sponges and air brushes to share the story.

“This project gives the members and next generation an iconic base, a purpose and, importantly, a community to be part of.”

Owen Cavanagh is leading the project and said he was honoured to develop a concept which told the club’s story over the past 50 years.

“The concept is a story depicting the original landowners and connecting us to country with the art by Shauna,” Mr Cavanagh said.

“The combi van driving up from the northern parts of Brisbane depicts where the boardriders lived and how they would drive up here for competitions on weekends, and you can see the van passing the Glass House Mountains.

“The mural shows an overview of the beach where the club holds all of the competitions in Maroochydore. To the left is Old Woman Island and to the right is Point Cartwright.”

Contemporary Indigenous artist Shauna Hill explained the painting was about sharing the dreamtime story of Maroochydore.

“It’s the traditional story of Maroochy who was a woman back in the day and her partner got killed. They say she turned into a swan and she cried a river of tears and that’s how all the waterways of the Sunshine Coast were made,” Ms Hill said.

“I’m trying to take that part of the story and show these are her crying tears and the waterways being formed.

“Not many people know about this story, so when they hear about it, the story keeps spreading and that’s kind of the point of Indigenous art.

“We have our history, and we keep it through our artwork and storytelling, so by having it out where people can see it and constantly hear about it, keeps the tradition going.”

Cr Natoli and Mr Cavanagh recognised these clubs’ important contribution to the Sunshine Coast community.

“It’s an honour the club chose me to be a part of this mural, to coordinate it and trust me to make it all happen,” Mr Cavanagh said.

“The club is really excited, and the passers-by and general public have been really interested in watching the process develop.”

Cr Natoli said it was vitally important these clubs were part of our community not just for our physical wellbeing but also our mental health.

“Council is focused on continuing to develop spaces and places like our recreation playgrounds and fields, our skate parks and our infrastructure and recognises the importance of being outdoors, enjoying nature.”

The project was funded by the Division 4 minor capital works budget which contributed $12,500 to complete the works.  

For more information about the Northshore Boardriders Club visit: www.northshoreboardriders.com/about. For more information about Sunshine Coast community groups visit council’s Community Groups Directory.

Image: Left to right: Owen Cavanagh, Rod Tickle, Steven Bordonaro and Shauna Hill in front of the mural.