Whyalla has left a lasting impression on the What’s Up Downunder crew after its visit to the region last week … an impression that will be broadcast nationally on television next year.
What’s Up Downunder hosts “Macca” McGowan, Angie Hilton and Robby Nethercote were in town to film a series of segments for their Dometic Follow the Sun Convoy for Charity television program that will be aired nationally on Channel 10 and 1 next year.
The crew filmed at the Whyalla Visitor Information Centre where they took a tour of the HMAS Whyalla and visited the Maritime Museum. They also checked out Pete Bleeze’s fantastic Elvis Museum.
It was then over to the marina where they hopped in kayaks with Sonny Phillis and his Dolphin Treasure Hire operation. It was here Angie couldn’t hold back as the crew got up close to Whyalla’s famous, friendly dolphins.
“Could be one of the best days of my life... kayaking with the dolphins in Whyalla with Dolphin Treasure Hire,” Angie gushed on her Facebook page.
“They were just as fascinated with us as we were with them.”
What’s Up Downunder posted its pictures that night with more than 15,000 views from the across the country in a matter of hours with comments like “where is this?” ensuring Whyalla has well and truly come under notice of camping and caravanning fans.
Sonny was just as enthusiastic and rapt to be involved with the national television program after just two months running his kayak hire business.
“There is nothing more rewarding than reading comments like this (from Angie), hearing everyone’s positive feedback after returning, and the amount of support I have received from the local community,” Sonny said.
“There was a crew of approximately 15 that came down and jumped on the kayaks while we had the film crew and producers in a boat capturing all the footage.
“They were all gob smacked at how curious and friendly natured these dolphins were, they didn’t expect anything like that. The crew did not have to approach or paddle to the dolphins, they simply came right up to them to say hello which they could not believe.”
The visiting crew was just as enthusiastic about the HMAS Whyalla and the Elvis museum.
“As we walked through the ship the stories began to tell themselves, the history within the ship and the journey from being built to being docked in Whyalla is incredible,” What’s Up Downunder posted on its website.
“This is a MUST while in Whyalla, the ship also has some fantastic photo opportunities.
“From the Elvis clocks and salt and pepper shakers to the 1961 gold Cadillac, it is hard not to be impressed with the Peter’s true dedication to the King,” it added about the Elvis museum.
The What’s Up Downunder presenters were travelling with families travelling the Eyre Peninsula as part of a Caravanning with Kids social media group. The crew also put on a happy hour at the Whyalla Foreshore Caravan Park for locals to attend while raising money for National Breast Cancer Foundation and also attended Saturday’s Remembrance Day service in Whyalla.
These Whyalla segments will appear on the lifestyle show, aimed at travellers and caravan enthusiasts, in February or March next year. The show will be aired by Channel 10 on Saturdays and Channel 1 on Sundays to a national audience.
Parable Productions from Victoria is the company behind What’s Up Downunder and it has been working with SA Tourism to come up with places of interest to film for the program which is now in its eighth year of production.