Esteemed former teacher and principal Joan Palmer has celebrated her 101st birthday, surrounded by Maitland legends.
Joan turned 101-years-old on Sunday, February 4, and Brian (78-years-old) and Melinda (64-years-old) celebrated their birthdays on Thursday, February 8.
The trio, who are close friends, have been getting together for their birthdays for five years now.
They met on Thursday at Burkey's House of Espresso for champagne and cake, and shared a toast to mark their special days.
"I've known her for a long time and she's just a marvellous lady," Melinda said about Joan.
"She's so interesting and her knowledge, she just knows so much because she's taught so many people around the area, she's just a wealth of knowledge."
"She has a great memory, I can't remember yesterday and she can tell you [about] 60 years ago," Brian added.
The three friends know each other primarily through golf at Maitland Golf Club.
Born in 1923, Joan is very sharp and can recall where she was when World War II began and where she was when it ended.
"I remember when war was declared, I was with my aunt, I came home, they came on [the radio] and said 'the prime minister has to speak'," she said.
"He said 'Germany has declared war on Poland and England has declared war on Germany therefore we are at war', that's when I found that out.
"And after six years I happened to be [teaching] at a girls school on the other side of Bathurst, and we were at the pictures one night and it flashed across the screen that peace had been declared.
"We all got up and erupted and went out, and we didn't finish the picture."
She can also name every train station between Sydney and Waratah, and is a big fan of the Amazon Alexa.
"I have it going all the time, I have Alexa and sometimes I might say 'play music from My Fair Lady' or something like that, but you see I'm just so lucky that I've still got my marbles," she said.
In 1965 Joan took up a post as principal at Vacy Public School, making her one of the very first female principals in NSW.
She also worked as principal at Morpeth, Mayfield West and Scone public schools.
"I always wanted to be a teacher so I became a teacher, and I went out in war time so while at university, which was then the teacher's college, they appealed for the women to go into the small schools out west," she said.
"So I put my hand up and said I'd be one of them, and I spent the war years - I call it a war service - at little one-teacher schools with terrible accommodation."
Brian, who is owner at Burkey's House of Espresso, is well known within the community for his service to rugby league and his time at Maitland City Council.
"He's a special boy, a golfer and a footballer," Joan said of Brian.
Melinda was inducted into Maitland council's Hall of Fame in 2019 for her contribution to sport.
She was the winner of the first professional women's foot race over 100 metres in Australia, and is listed in the Guinness Book of Records for this achievement.
She was also the first woman to run professionally against men and win in a 70 metre race.