REMEMBERING LAS BALSAS: Assistant curator of the Ballina Naval and Maritime Museum Tom Roach at his display which documents the Las Balsas journey.
REMEMBERING LAS BALSAS: Assistant curator of the Ballina Naval and Maritime Museum Tom Roach at his display which documents the Las Balsas journey. Rebecca Lollback

Exhibition teaching about Las Balsas

WITH plans under way for a community celebration in honour of the 40th anniversary of the Las Balsas expedition, the Ballina Naval and Maritime Museum also has a display now on exhibition.

Assistant curator Tom Roach has been working on the display since Christmas.

It features a not-to-scale map of the Pacific Ocean, and each fortnight Mr Roach will place a tiny replica raft at the spot where the Las Balsas was this time 40 years ago.

He said it aimed to educate people about the expedition. "I'll also be putting up bulletins detailing what the crew was going through at the time," Mr Roach said.

"It will make people realise just how far they travelled and how long it took. They started in May and didn't end up in Ballina until November."

He said the museum was also working on a project with the Ballina Community Men's Shed to put together DIY kits so that people could make their own mini raft.

Meanwhile, Mr Roach has come across an old photograph of local girls pictured with the Las Balsas crew upon their arrival in Ballina. They were Helen Watkins, Helen McIntyre, Katrina Daley, Vivienne Daley and Amanda Wheedon.