Sport has always been an important part of life in Eden but in years gone by the sporting landscape was a very different one.
At a sports gala day in wartime 1941, a fundraiser for a downed Spit Fire plane, competitions included boxing, fishing, tree felling, sleeper squaring, darts, hunting and tug of war with fishermen versus timber workers and diggers versus businessmen.
Cricket and football was played on uneven ground between the two pubs and golfers dealt with cattle and industry on the short course at Eden Lookout.
Eden finally got an 18-hole course in 1982 after carving out a permanent home on a former sheep station.
Former editor GF Phillips together with G A Grieg and J R Logan wrote about local sport in their book titled The Founding of the Eden Killer Whale Museum with a short history of Eden.
“On one occasion (Herbert Greer) hit the ball clear of the tall ti-trees below Calle Calle Street and over the cliffs below three times in succession; also onto the roof of the Convent and the School of Arts”
Another popular sport was tennis and the courts were located in Mitchell Street where the Apex Park now lies.
Picnic races were held on the shores of Lake Curalo, where the Eden Caravan Park is now established and then on the northern side of the lake.
A shooting range was nearby, and shooting on Sundays was a punishable offence.
Picnic races were also held on the beach at Boydtown in the early 1900s.
Boating remains a popular past time and regattas were held at the Eden Wharf beginning with whaling longboats, which would race a one-mile course between Keefe’s Pinch to the main wharf.
Trawler races were also popular until the 1950s when it became too dangerous for passengers aboard the crowded trawlers.
Today, traditional sports of cricket, rugby league, AFL, golf, bowls, tennis and soccer are still played in the Eden area.
Surf life saving was established in 1930s and the Pambula Surf Life Saving CLub retains a strong presence on our beaches in the summer and is a high achiever at inter-club competitions.
In recent years netball has made a resurgence and the Eden netball courts were recently renamed in honour of the late Elaine Kelly, a long serving stalwart of the club.