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LOCAL AND GENERAL. ~» The Premier returned to Wellington from the South yesterday morning. Another batch of 11 probationary constables have just been sworn in as members of the Police force. They underwent a course of instruction at Mount Cook Station under Sergt. O'Donovan, and all pussed their test examinations satisfactorily. They have now been drafted off to different parts of the colony. Commander Thibault and Lieut. Docteur of the French warship Eure, accompanied the French Cora-ul (Count de Courte) and the Countess de Uourte on Saturday on a visit to St. Patrick's College amd Mother Mary Joseph Aubert's Hospital for Incurables. Yesterday tne French Consul entertained a party of the ship's officers at his residence. A large number of citizens visited the warship yesterday afternoon. Yesterday a' parly of officers were entertained at luncheon at the French Consulate. Commander Thibault paid an official visit to-day to the Premier, to whom he was introduced by the French Consul, Count de Courte. The Countess de Courle has usued invitations to an At Home ior Wednesday, in honour of the naval officers. A lad who had given evidence in a Magistrate's Court case this morning said, when the question of the costs wus> being considered, that he made £2 a day selling fruit on trains on. «. section ol the Manawatu line. Worser Bay sands presented a lively and picturesque appearance on Saturday aiteruoon, when the lads and lassies down to the tiniest of toddlers were given the greatest treat remembered by the juveniles of the district. The idea originated with a quartet of well-known commercial travellers— Messrs. Cotterill, J Earle, Nolan, and Brown— who had been spending a holiday at Karaka.Bay. During the week the children ot Karaka and Worser Bays and Seatoun were invited to assemble at the Bungalow on j Saturday afternoon, and at the appointed time about 100 youngsters gathered at ' the rendezvous. Here they were each supplied with a paper cap and a noiseproducing instrument, from trumpets and harmonicas to concertinas and drums. Some of the youngsters of older growth were blacked up for the occasion, and headed by these, and attended by "specials" bearing cards soliciting contributions to the "More Cake Fund," a procession was formed, and then, amid a din which none could withstand, the whole seafront of the Bays was serenaded—a solid contribution resulting. The afternoon was then spent on the sands, where the children were twice dined, | 'much diverted, and finally decorated with sports prizes. Mrs. Hearn, and a party of residents entertained visitors to an I ol fresco afternoon tea, and all was jollity and gaiety, everyone joining in the outing heartily. Before dispersing the children gave cheers for their entertaining quartet, with musical honours — "For they are jolly good fellows." The teachers of the Petone Wesleyan Sunday School held their annual meeting on Friday evening, Mr. S. Kebblewhite presiding. The following officers were elected ior the ensuing year : — Superintendent, W. J. Kirk; Secretary, C. J. Hollard (re-elected) ; Treasurer, F. Lockwood; Organist, Miss Lustji. A hearty vote of thanks was accorded to Mr. Kebblewhite, ex-Superintendent, for past services. In connection with the church branch of the Band of Hope, Miss Griffiths and Mr. Dillon were elected Vice-Presidents, Mr. Lockwood, Secretary and Treasurer, and Miss V. J. Kirk, organist. The children of the Brooklyn State School greatly enjoyed their annual outing at Day's Bay on Saturday. The weather was perfect, and the trips to and from the bay were made in smooth water. Races for the children and some for their elders were got off in a satisfactory manner. The married women's race was won by Mrs. Morris and the single women's race by Miss May Roberts, Various games were also indulged in. Mr. T. Morris was the winner of the Committeemen's race. The arrangements were carried out by a Committee consisting of Messrs. Dovey (Chairman), J. M. Walter (Secretary), W. Hendricksen, T. Morris, R. Larkin,, J. Browne, amd M. A. Robinson, assisted by Mr. Hopkirk (Headmaster), and his staff. The Kinematograph exhibition at the Criterion Theatre was well attended on Saturday night. The new pictures of the war in South Africa were much admired. The novelties introduced, at a change of programme, by the Vaudeville entertainers at Messrs. John Fuller and Son's Waxworks Exhibition, attracted a large audience to the Choral Hall on Saturday night. Standing-room only being available. The Company's new performers were given a hearty reception, encores being the order of the evening. The Petone Homing Pigeon Club flew three races on Saturday. One from Hawera was won by Mr. Leighton's Victoria, with a velocity of 963 yards per minute ; Mr. Sim's Young Boston, 962 yards, being second, and Mr. Alerahall's Ensign, 961 yards, third. The second race was from Napier, and Mr. Bray's Blue Coat was first with 995 yards per minute ; Mr. Haggar's Brooklyn, second, 985 yards, and Mr. Lunny's Blue Fire, 956 yards, third. In the third race, from Auckland, Mr. Dixon's Telegram, homed in 12 hours 53 minutes 53 seconds, and up to last evening none of the other starters in this race had arrived. Messrs. Harcourt and Co. inform us that applications for shares in the Premier Dredge are coming freely, 3000 of the total issue being accounted for. As Dunedin and Christchurch are subscribing rapidly, they urge that it would be advisable for intending investors here to apply at once for the shares they require. When the West Coast applications are received, the lists should be nearly full. "Wise's New Zealand Post Office Directory for 1900 is to hand. Tt is a bulky volume of nearly twq thousand pages, and fills a gap in commercial requirements that the various district directories do not entirely supply. And a new feature about it id that tlie work I of printing is this year done in Dunediu. Hitherto the big work has been produced in London. The personal directory for the whole colony is given in three different forms — (1) divided into towns •2) names in nlphabeticnl order, and (8) trades and professions. There are also masses of information a 8 to various official, ecolesiastical, legal, and other matters, besides a pastoral and j agricultural directory that deals extensively with the dairy factories and sheep-owners of the colony and the like. The introduction of the linotype machine into the colony has greatly facilitated the production of the work, which will in future be issued annually instead of every second year. The excursion to the Naval camp yesterday afternoon was well attended, the Duco making two trips and taking across about 350 people. The Garrison Band played several airs, which were much enjoyed by the visitors. The Navals' "kazoo" band caused much amusement, and the collection which followed in aid of the "More Men" Fund was well responded to. During the afternoon the officers and men entertained their visitors at afternoon tea. Viking Brand Lemon Squash is cool and wholesome. Made from pure fruit. Sold everywhere.*— Advfc
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