Member Stories

Bentleigh Club

To honour the incredible journey’s our members have had with the VRI, we have reached out to some who have kindly shared their stories with us.

Pictured: Lynette Russell and her husband Gary Russell

Lynette Russell is the current secretary of Bendigo VRI, a position which she has held for several years. She and her husband Gary Russell were honoured as Life Members in 2020, an honour she saw her parents receive after their many years of service with Bendigo VRI.

Pictured: Lynette’s mother May Stevens being presented a VRI Bendigo Life Membership.

Pictured: Lynette's father Wally Stevens being presented a VRI Bendigo Life Membership. 

Lynette grew up with the Bendigo VRI. Reminiscing on the times she would play Carpet Bowls with her parents and Green Bowls at Seymour VRI (though at the time she thought it was an old person’s game), Lynette captures the community spirit that exists in the VRI and the timelessness of a community barbecue. Describing her favourite memory with the VRI as bus trips into Flinders Street to compete in the Ballroom against teams from all over Victoria.

Having been with the Bendigo VRI for many years, Lynette has seen many incredible milestones. This includes the 70th anniversary of the Bendigo VRI and Lynette hopes to maintain her position as Secretary in anticipation of their 100th anniversary in 2024.  

Pictured: The Bendigo VRI 70th Anniversary cake
Pictured: May Stevens cutting the cake

Despite the difficulties of the past two years, Lynette maintains her ambitions to attract more members and bring life back to the hall. Hoping to return to her former schedule of hosting events and having a gossip with other members, creating more incredible memories with the VRI.

Thank you, Lynette, for your ongoing support and dedication to the Bendigo VRI.  

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I would encourage everybody and anybody to join the VRI. It’s a community and family that have been welcoming to me and my family. There are so many benefits and activities to participate and socialise to meet new people. BILL MITREVSKI  VRI Member