Summer in north-west Sydney means lots of long, hot days with kids on holidays running about through the sprinklers, splashing in pools and cycling and scootering everywhere.
While many in our community take the opportunity to relax on a beach somewhere for a few weeks, most of us at some point will explore a local park for an easy day out in the sun. The Hills and Hawkesbury districts are full of beautiful parks and reserves, so this summer we’re encouraging you to invite your family and friends to any local park or reserve for a picnic or barbecue, share some frisbee, cricket, football and bike riding, and then take some snaps of your group enjoying the sun and fun.
Here are some ideas for local locations you might not have tried that are great for kids and adults alike:
• Fagan Park – Galston
• Bernie Mullane – Kellyville
• Rouse Hill Regional Park – Rouse Hill
• Balcombe Heights Estate – Baulkham Hills
• Fred Caterson Reserve – Castle Hill
• Castle Hill Heritage Park – Castle Hill
• Crestwood Reserve – Crestwood
• Bella Vista Farm – Norwest
• Macquarie Park – Windsor
• Navua Reserve - Grose Vale
• Upper Colo Reserve – Colo
• The Lakes Edge – The Ponds
• Wisemans Ferry Park – Wisemans Ferry.
You can find lots of information about local parks and reserves on your council website. Most parks have barbecue facilities, and look out too for the Australia Day weekend and New Year’s Eve/Day events in your area.
During summer, most of the Hills and Hawkesbury are on total fire ban, so please remember to respect that requirement when you’re out and about — our fire personnel are busy enough this summer.
There are lots of ways you can be social this summer, so choose ways that suit you best. Don’t forget to invite your mates — it’s about getting out and getting social with your neighbours, family and friends, and enjoying the beauty of an Australian summer in the outdoors. You don’t have to go too far; even the little park down the street is good for an afternoon stroll.
And remember to Slip-Slop-Slap to protect yourself from the sun while you’re out and about.

Bring A Mate Peloton – Social cycling group for men
The Bring A Mate Peloton started in 2009 in the Hills, and is about helping men build healthy relationships with other blokes who share similar interests — in this case, cycling. We all need mates to encourage us to be a better friend, husband, dad, colleague, employee or boss.
Bring A Mate encourages men to spend time with other blokes because involving mates in your life is critical to your mental and physical wellbeing, through the good times and the bad. The BAM Peloton is a cycling group for men and has weekly rides that are social and open to any man aged 15 and over. You don’t need to be a fast rider to join the group as there are different speeds and groups to cater for everyone. Their Facebook group has hundreds of guys talking, cycling and sharing invitations for local rides throughout the week.
Check them out at

North Rocks Markets – Raising money for charity
in our community for over 30 years

In an age of slick boutique markets run by savvy business people, the North Rocks Market is refreshingly old school and has maintained that flea market feel. It’s a must if you haven’t been before, and even if you have you need to go again.
The North Rocks Market is a local community market run by members of the Rotary Club of Carlingford. Every week club members share the load of being on a roster to hold the donation bucket at the gates and assist stallholders setting up.
The market is open to the public every Sunday (weather permitting) from 7am to 1pm, with a mix of permanent and casual stallholders selling everything from bric-a-crap to books, crafts, plants and vegetables. The market is held inside the Royal School for Deaf and Blind Children (RIDBC) at 363-365 North Rocks Road, North Rocks, opposite the North Rocks Shopping Centre.
Entry is by cash donation collected by friendly Rotary volunteers at the gates. Funds raised go to the many charities supported by Rotary, including RIDBC. You can find more information at their Facebook page .

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