WHEN the local school closed its doors in 1993 and with the football club defunct, social outlets in Ecklin were dwindling.
In 1994 two mums, Josie Logan and Liz Gore, decided to act and started a playgroup at the Ecklin Hall.
Its success is obvious with the playgroup celebrating its 20th year on Saturday with more than 60 people in attendance.
The opening of the playgroup influenced the community, said co-founder Mrs Logan.
“At the time the school had just recently closed ... and the football club was no longer in operation,” she said.
“(The playgroup) had a big impact on the community and obviously organising social events as part of our fund-raising but at the same time giving the community an opportunity to come together.”
Mrs Logan said she never considered the possibility of the playgroup reaching a 20th anniversary.
“When we first started the playgroup if it went for five years it would have been doing really well.”
Tammi Logan, sister-in-law to Josie, is the playgroup’s assistant treasurer and has had many roles, including president, over the past seven years.
She said while the number of families involved fluctuated year to year, one thing remained the same.
“It’s a good social outlet for parents and (a place to learn) socialisation skills for the kids,” she said.
“We very much try and make it open — it’s warm and friendly and there’s no pressure.”
Anniversary celebrations on Saturday included face painting by the Colour Angel, morning tea and a jumping castle.
Mrs Logan said playgroup was a vital part of the Ecklin community.
“It’s great because while most parents nowadays probably work and have their kids in daycare there are actually still families out there where one partner does not work.
“And it’s open. It’s not just mums. Grandparents and dads often bring the kids along.”