3216: The Grovedale Youth Walk

Year 10 students from Grovedale Secondary College assisted to identify a route around Grovedale, researching the area and developing points of interest that young people would identify with.

Follow the loop from the Grovedale Neighbourhood House (GNH). The Grovedale Neighbourhood House provides a welcoming, inclusive and accessible community space. A number of programs at the centre are for young people aged 12-25.

Every Thursday between 3:30pm and 5:30pm,a Youth Drop In session is held, where young people can hang out, play games, create art, have fun and eat some food with friends. There is a great grassy area, basketball space and playground out the back of the Centre. The Centre also has function rooms, perfect for parties, meetings, activities and a Childcare Centre with forms the Hub.

The Neighbourhood House hours are Monday to Friday from 9:00am to 3:00pm.

Distance of loop: Approximately 6.5 kilometres
Time: Approximately 1 hour 30 minutes

3216: Grovedale Youth Walk map showing pause points
Click to Enlarge Image

Pause spots

Pause spot 1
Coolabah Park is a green open space which is always open and welcoming for all ages.
There is a grassy area, extending over a small hill perfect for football and soccer.
There are two large playgrounds and picnic tables which are littered throughout the park for those who just want to sit and chat.
Coolabah Park
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Pause spot 2
Waurn Ponds Shopping Centre and Reading Cinema - the Waurn Ponds Shopping has expanded as the area has grown.
It now has a good variety of retail and dining options, and place like Reading Cinemas where you can go to meet up with friends without having to go into Geelong.
Coolabah Park
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Pause spot 3
Medical One - young people are welcome and your privacy is respected at Medical One, which is a bulk billing medical practice.
It is located across the highway.
Appointments can be booked online at medicalone.com.au or by calling 03 5243 6111.
Entrance to Medical One
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Pause spot 4
LeisureLink Aquatic and Recreation Centre
Leisurelink Aquaticand Recreation Centre is one of Geelong’s biggest, swimming and leisure centres.
Access to a gym, children’s water play park, pools, cafe, two brilliant waterslides, a rehabilitation pool, swimming lessons, free parking and Wi-Fi makes this a great place to meet friends and families to have fun all year round.
Waterslide at Leisurelink
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Pause spot 5
Waurn Ponds Library is an award winning, two storey building that offers children, young people and adults an amazing space to access books and technology or a quiet place to study.
There is a children’s area on the ground floor with play and learn computers, semi outdoor reading deck and a family room.
First floor offers flexible area for reading and study and has a large section of non fiction and young adult collections.
The library has free Wi-Fi access to members and self check out features with multiple language settings other than English.
Waurn Ponds Library entrance
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Pause spot 6
The Geelong Baseball Centre (Pioneer Park) has four diamonds used by local team, major events and for pre-season training for the Japanese Chiba Lotte Marines.
The clubs using this centre are welcoming to all ages and abilities.
Geelong Baseball Centre at night
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Pause spot 7
Waurn Ponds Skate Park - skate competitions are held here in the school holidays.
It has varying heights of ramps and jumps and is free to use. The park includes:
  • street course with different ledges, wedges, stairs with handrails, pyramid and quarters
  • Geelong’s tallest outdoor steel vertical ramp, (2.7 metres) and a spine ramp with a 1.5 metres rollover
  • horseshoe shaped snack run and bowls.
Skateboarder in action at the Waurn Ponds Skate Park
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Pause spot 8
Waurn Ponds Dirt Jumps is a great place to meet friends and get some exercise.
BMX and dirt bikes use the dirt jumps.
The jumps are designed for beginners, intermediate and advanced riders.
Waurn Ponds dirt jumps
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The history of Grovedale

In 1849, ten Prussian families were sponsored by Dr Alexander Thomson of Geelong for the purpose of growing grapes to make wine and other foods. They arrived in Melbourne and journeyed onto Grovedale to begin their lives in a new land.

Prussia at the time was a German Kingdom, and its main language German. The political climate, economic hardships and lack of religious freedom seem to be the main reasons why they left their homelands.

Geelong was still in its infancy, with a population of 595. Each family was allocated a plot of land between one and two acres in the Grovedale area. As the families prospered and opportunities arose, the new settlers purchased more land and more families followed in 1853.

This small community became known as Germantown and was one of the first German settlements in Victoria. Amongst the first arrivals were the Bieske, Baensch, Kerger, Winter and Boehm families. These families worked incredibly hard to shape Grovedale as we know it today.

The first Lutheran Church was built in Church St, Grovedale, and was also used as a school. The graveyard, still in use today, holds many insights into the first settlers of Grovedale. Some of the earlier graves are written in German but have been found with misspelled words because stonemasons, who did the engraving, were not of German descent. Around 1871 a new brick church was built on the Corner of Torquay and Heyers Rd. Pastor George Heyer was the pastor at this church for 52 years.

The project

This project has been developed as a part of a broader project called Knowing your place: Active Transport Project.

The project purpose is to bring together local community groups, schools and residents to participagte in a range of community based activities.

With support from a project officer, employed by the City, year 10 students from Grovedale College identified the route, researching the area and developing points of interest for young people.

As part of the project, the students conducted an audit to assess the walkability of the route.

Grovedale College

Community Enhancement is a subject that focuses on getting students to learn more about the community they live in.

We do this by getting out and looking for opportunities to help and support the community.

Examples of how we've done this include:

  • running a fundraiser for the Geelong Animal Welfare Society, asking students and teachers to donate items such as:
    • blankets
    • ping pong balls (cats' favourite toys) and
    • canned food
    to help care for the animals.
  • talking and playing games with old people at various aged facilities around Grovedale
  • inviting many parents and guest speakers to come to our school including:
    • Ben from Step Back Think
    • Colleen and her guide dog, Freeman, from Guide Dogs Victoria.

Our biggest project for the year was creating this walk, helping you find places you can go to skate, shop, exercise, play sport, for medical help and most importantly, hang out with your friends.

We hope you find it useful, helping you find places you can go to skate, shop, exercise, play sport, for medical help and most importantly, hang out with your friends.

We would like to acknowledge the efforts of Lucy Maxwell and Amanda Hebbard (teachers) and Year 10 Grovedale Secondary College students who participated in the project.

Page last updated: Tuesday, 9 June 2020