Jessika Randell, Lize Dorgeloh, Sarah Fettell, Romy Bridgeman, Georgia Herron and Clare Rowlands relaxing by the lagoon.
Jessika Randell, Lize Dorgeloh, Sarah Fettell, Romy Bridgeman, Georgia Herron and Clare Rowlands relaxing by the lagoon. Georgia Simpson

Not a single Toolie in sight

FOR 39 years, Schoolies events across Australia enable Year 12 leavers to celebrate the end of their schooling.

This year is no exception, and so far according to Whitsunday Schoolies co-ordinator Liz Youd more than 1350 have registered for the 2018 events at Airlie Beach.

"It's going really well and numbers are slowly increasing each day," Ms Youd said.

"All the kids who are registered are taking advantage of all that's on offer - there's discounts on selected tours, free barbecues and the lagoon is always popular."

Sarah Fettell, who travelled to Airlie Beach from Mackay with her five closest friends, said it was the last time they would all be together for a while.

"It's been such a good week - some of us are going to Brisbane or Townsville for uni, and some of us are going travelling so it's the last hurrah for a while," Sarah said.

"It's almost like a rite of passage - after 12 years of continuous stress we deserve one week of letting our hair down together."

Liam Gorka chose Airlie Beach for Schoolies because it was smaller and the location was convenient.

"I'm from Townsville so it was easy to get to, and it's not too big which is good, it's a good size," he said.

Ms Youd said at the end of the day, it was all about providing a secure backdrop.

"We want to have them come to a safe environment, and we look after them as best we can and get them home safely," she said.

"Our volunteers have been fantastic along with all the emergency services.

"A volunteer said the kids were the politest they'd had in years.

"They've been a great bunch of kids - the nicest manners we've had for years. Lots of pleases and thank yous."


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