Four friends take us back to Robe

By Kate Foreman

Limestone Coast friends, Anne Legoe, Deb Mackey, Lisa Enright and Kristal Tonkin, sure are passionate about their little slice of coastline – so passionate they’re sharing it with the world.

That’s exactly what they’ve been doing since 2012 in their volunteer roles as Robe Tourism Association‘s marketing sub-committee.

From marketing, photography, design and styling, each of the women volunteer their time to continually bring ideas to propel Robe’s status all year-round.

The women bring their own strengths, skills and experience to the team, and all have a unique story of how they ended up in Robe and why they love the town.

“It’s great fun and, when we get together, lightbulbs go off and we come up with some really great ideas to celebrate Robe,” Deb says.

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The women volunteer their time to continually bring ideas to propel the seaside town’s status all year-round (Photo: ROBE South Australia. Take Me Back Facebook page)

Just one of the ideas which has taken off in popularity is the ROBE South Australia. Take Me Back Facebook and Instagram page, which has been a huge hit for locals and visitors.

The social media platforms have expanded over the past couple of years, with many people sending in their special Robe memories to share.

“Inspiration for the Facebook page came from Liz Harfull’s book ‘Almost an Island: the story of Robe’ – it was a big inspiration for me in particular,” Kristal says.

“After speaking with a lot of people, we realised Robe held many special memories for so many people and we thought this page would be a great way to share that,” she adds.

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ROBE South Australia. Take Me Back Facebook and Instagram page has been a huge hit for locals and visitors (Photo: ROBE South Australia. Take Me Back Facebook page)

After brainstorming ideas, they looked at the emotional attachment each of them has with Robe.

“We realised it was the memories, experiences and strong attachment of returning to those times that we wanted to express in our branding,” Lisa says.

Earlier this year, a few local faces even starred in adverts created to inspire people to visit the seaside town.

Soon after, the new Robe website went live, helping to tie the branding together.

For the girls, it has been a labour of love, fitting in their tourism commitments with their already busy lives.

“There is something almost magical that happens when we are together,” Deb says.

“If it wasn’t for the synergy that the four of us have, I would have qualified it as a lot of work a long time ago and stopped.”

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An overhead shot of Robe (Photo: ROBE South Australia. Take Me Back Facebook page)

Anne echoes Deb’s thoughts.

“We all have a mutual respect for each other, are open minded, honest, spontaneous, persistent, have an unbiased community focus and commitment and of course all love Robe, which helps to keep our team motivated to get the tasks completed,” she says.

“Robe is authentic; it’s obviously a stunning place, however, it’s the “worts and all” that keeps me coming home.”

Whether long cold winters, windy summers or water that looks tropical – but feels antarctic, Robe is a place the women say “punches above its weight”.

According to Anne, it’s their “happy place”.

Pictured in headline image are the creative minds behind Robe’s re-branding Anne Legoe, Deb Mackey, Lisa Enright and Kristal Tonkin 

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