Anzac Day In The Highlands
This article was originally written for the '100 Years of Anzac’ commemorations in 2018. For an updated list of 2019 services and events, please check the links below;
Dawn Services:: Please check here for a list of 2019 Anzac Day Services in the Southern Highlands.
Events & Activities:: Please check here for a list of the events on in the Southern Highlands this Anzac Day.
Anzac Day in the Southern Highlands (2018)
There are few phrases that evoke such feelings as “Lest we forget”. Three simple words that pack a mighty punch and remind us how very lucky we are to call this wide, brown land our home. Anzac Day is a day for remembrance - of lives lost and sacrifices made. It is an opportunity to show indebtedness for our freedom and to celebrate our pride in the servicemen and women of Australia, past and present. April 25th 2018 is particularly significant as it marks the final year in the ‘100 Years of Anzac’ commemorations. From the solemn Dawn Service to street parades and the traditional game of two-up, The Fold have compiled a list of happenings across the Southern Highlands this Anzac Day.
Yikes! For a game involving two coins and a small wooden paddle, there sure are a lot of rules! Let’s get the low-down on all things two-up, shall we?
The Why?:: The origins of two-up date back to the 18th Century. Aussie soldiers played it extensively during WWI and is known to have been a popular game amongst Irish and English convicts as early as 1798. It is traditionally played on Anzac day each year in commemoration of, and to share a bond with our diggers. Two-up is illegal at all other times of the year (aside from a handful of casinos and appropriately licensed venues).
The How?:: Two coins, usually pennies, are thrown into the air by way of a paddle which is called a “kip”. Bets are placed on whether the coins will land heads or tails or a combination of the two. There is a variation of the game known as “swy” or sudden death which uses three coins and, according to a short survey conducted by The Fold, it seems that the three-coin game is pretty common place nowadays - probably because this version always yields a result (meaning you will always get two heads or two tails). This all sounds simple enough… but there are a few things you’ll need to know before you get started.
- The ringkeeper or the “ringy” is the person in-charge of the two-up ring. They look after the coins and judge the validity of a spin. The ringie is running the show and their decision is final.
- The person tossing the coins is called the “spinner” – hence the term “Come in Spinner!”
- The “boxer” manages the betting.
- A group of gamblers playing two-up is called a “school”.
- The “ring” is the area designated for playing the game.
As for the betting side of things, best we leave that part to the experts. Let’s just say there are more than a few rules and the laws of probability are a little outside of our realm of knowledge!
That about covers it! May you spend this Anzac Day just the way you want to, whatever that may look like. Have a good one, Highlanders!