Mustering up for an important cause
AUGUST's Gympie Muster will tap into the enthusiasm of its attendees to raise funds towards the battle to reduce the impact of prostate cancer.
Australian men, their partners and families will benefit from the funds raised for research through the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia.
The Muster will also host its very own Biggest Ever Bloke's Lunch. The ticketed fund-raising event will feature special guests John Williamson and guitar legend Tim Gaze.
The Muster's Biggest Ever Bloke's Lunch will be held on Muster Friday, August 24, in celebration of the charity partnership. The $55 tickets include a two-course sit down meal, guest speeches from John Williamson and Tim Gaze, who will also be performing, and an auction with all proceeds going direct to PCFA. Tickets for the lunch are available pre-purchase at www.muster.com.au.
Prostate cancer has been a big subject in Gaze's life since he was diagnosed with it in 2009. "When the founding member of Rose Tattoo and my friend Peter Wells was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2005, it was a big wake up call for me, and thanks to Angry Anderson being very on board with promoting the fact that this condition could be averted for a lot of men, by simply undertaking a blood test," Gaze said
"Even since my experience with prostate cancer in 2009, diagnosis and treatments have improved radically. The medical procedure I experienced then (radical prostatectomy) required a four-day stay in hospital, but that stay now has been shortened to one or two days max, and the treatments have become even more precise and less invasive.
"My wonderful wife Kath gave birth to my beautiful (and first) son Oliver on 10th Oct, 2009. I was 56 years old. Two and a half months later, on Christmas Eve, I was told that I had a serious prostate cancer condition. Besides initially being hurled into a state of shock regarding the seriousness of my condition, and being hit with the word cancer, I often reflect to that time and give thanks to the doctors that tested me, diagnosed me and advised me through my treatment. If not for their caring and professional actions, I know for a fact that I would not be here now to enjoying seeing my son grow up.
"Guys, whatever you do, make sure you take the time to get checked for prostate cancer - just a simple blood test, and your friends and loved ones are those who will benefit from you considering yourself and them in this instance.
"Getting a timely check-up is probably the most important thing you can do for yourself. Statistics prove that even though this disease has historically affected more men in their 50s and later, it can strike the young as well - to borrow a phrase from my late friend and rock singer and journalist Vince Lovegrove, 'fate has no mercy'.
"Prostate cancer awareness is one of the most important things we can promote regarding the health and well-being of our loved ones, and I am proud to be able to contribute my support along with many others."
Muster chair Greg Cavanagh said choosing year's charity partner was driven by the disproportionate impact prostate cancer has in rural and regional areas. "One in five men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer by the age of 85, and statistics tell us the survival rate for those living in regional areas is 21 per cent lower than anywhere else," he said. "PCFA's work is critical in reducing that impact, and we're proud to host an event that connects the Muster community to open and honest conversation on the subject."
The Gympie Music Muster has helped generate more than $15 million in donations to charity and community groups since its inception in 1982.
This year's line-up features Lee Kernaghan, Troy Cassar-Daley, John Williamson, Ian Moss, Beccy Cole, Sara Storer, The Wolfe Brothers, Shane Nicholson, The Pigs, Hat Fitz & Cara, Fiona Boyes, Lloyd Spiegel, Blue Eyes Cry, plus many more still to be announced.
The 2018 Gympie Music Muster will run from August 23 to 26 in the Amamoor Creek State Forest near Gympie. Tickets are available via www.muster.com.au.