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Tuesday, 16 February


Echonetdaily: Rose coloured glasses "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

What an absolute disgrace wanting to put a seniors development near a hospital. Imagine how this will destroy the gateway to the Bay, what with its concrete plant, electricity substation and corrugated iron fence already beautifying the entrance.

Imagine having to look at landscaped housing and a small shopping complex – or is it all those old people we can’t look at? Maybe we could give everyone rose-coloured glasses as they drive in.

I’m pretty sure this development is not in anyone’s garden or space, so don’t worry – it won’t interfere with the studios that are springing up in backyards under the pretence of affordable housing.

The so-called outside developers have had interests in Byron Bay longer than most so-called locals have been here, so, no, they are not blow-ins. I think the NIMBYs need to look past their own agenda and see what could actually be good for the whole shire with jobs and facilities.

Or we can just say when you get to retirement age, ‘Fuck off’; we don’t want or need you any more.

Phil & Marie Boyd, Suffolk Park



The post Rose coloured glasses appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Echonetdaily: Mandy Nolan’s Soap Box: The ninth life "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

CatAngelToday I started crying in the cat-food aisle at Woolies. Not just a little bit. But those big gulping sobs that make your face screw up all weird and snot come out. John had said, ‘while you are out, grab some dog food’. The dog food is in the same aisle as the cat food. Usually I don’t cry over pet food. It’s just that today we’d had our scrappy old ginger euthanised. And not for scratching up the good couch like I’d threatened him once.

Over the past few months he’d started to waste away. Over the last two weeks he couldn’t eat or drink. He couldn’t clean himself. He couldn’t swallow. He had diarrhoea. I guessed that at 13 it wasn’t something he was going to get over. It looked terminal.

Turns out he had Cat AIDS. The diagnosis shocked me. There I was thinking he was just a big orange furball asleep on the lounge, but the moment my head was turned he was living his double life. Sweet cat by day, by night a promiscuous IV drug user. What else was he up to? Gambling? And there I was naively thinking lizards and birds were his weakness.

It was explained that he probably caught the virus in a fight with another cat. Being desexed and unable to load a syringe without assistance, any other form of transmission seemed unlikely. We decided to do it at home. The thought of putting it him in a box and taking him to the vet seemed a cruel end for a good cat. Ever since his three days of solitude in the neighbour’s downstairs cupboard h...


Echonetdaily: In search of Harvest "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

With interstate guests visiting for my birthday last week, I was after good quality north coast venues to impress my big-city friends. Their favourites were a long lunch at the excellent Fleet in Brunswick Heads, and also a lovely Friday afternoon spent drinking rosé on the deck at Harvest in Newrybar, where I was surprised to find that only one of our vehicles had successfully made it to Harvest by the shortest route.

Embarrassingly, as a 50-year-old bloke coming from Mullumbimby, I had confidently ignored the absurd suggestions from my onboard navigation to turn left for Newrybar at Ewingsdale onto something called the Hinterland Way, preferring to barrel directly through the tunnel and take the ‘southbound Bangalow exit’.

Of course there is no such thing – I would saved 4–5 minutes and 11km of driving if I had taken the Ewingsdale exit, then driven to Harvest through Bangalow and then along the old highway.

Instead, I had to drive south to the Lennox turnoff and backtrack, but the sting of my shameful blunder soon faded once I realised that almost everyone else had done the same thing. Jess Howard from Harvest says that she spends a fair bit of phone time each week giving directions!

Other Harvest news

Harvest have also changed their cafe weekday opening time to 9am. The takeaway coffee counter has been relocated to the Harvest deli and is open for takeaway coffee and bakery treats from 7 till 11am. As of this week, Harvest will also be very proud to call their wine list Australian. The bar team have worked hard to find the best that our country’s most exciting and conscientious growers have to offer, and look forward to sharing this with you.


Echonetdaily: Rainbow Dragons awash in Penrith gold "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Deborah Gibson, Mark Bellman and Val Bezuidenhout and their booty at the NSW Dragon Boat State Title in Penrith.

Deborah Gibson, Mark Bellman and Val Bezuidenhout and their booty at the NSW Dragon Boat State Title in Penrith.

Last weekend, three members of Rainbow Region Dragon Boat Club, as members of the Northern Pride, won gold, gold, gold at the NSW Dragon Boat State Titles, Penrith.

Leaving nothing in doubt they won all their heats, then the finals.

Rainbows Sports members Mark Bellman (open and mixed), Val Bezuidenhout (women and mixed) and Deborah Gibson (women and open) worked hard to make the Northern Pride team.

They all undertook rigorous fitness and strength testing for the hotly contested seats.

Paddlers from as far south as Port Macquarie vied for the coveted spots in the Northern Pride squad. They then spent weekends driving to Mylestom for training. An intense two-day weekend of training at Grafton left them aching and exhausted with blisters in some interesting places.

Northern Pride led from the beginning in all their races against the Southern and Western teams. Mark and Deborah now go on to r...


The Star: Kindness builds vegie garden "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

FRIENDS have united to give a Waratah Bay woman access to fresh vegetables in her backyard.

Rory Challis is battling multiple sclerosis (MS) and the disease prohibits her from bending low to tend to typical garden beds.

But on the first weekend in February, friends, including neighbours Jeff and Claire Buckland, built a raised garden bed in her backyard, courtesy of supporters, including South Gippsland Shire Council and AW Smith Timber and Hardware, Leongatha.

The working bee was organised by her friends Joanne Thompson of Food4Good, Marie Wilson and Jacki Ames.

“It’s been brilliant. Everything has been donated,” Rory said.

“The garden bed was fenced off, it has heaps of mulch and I love it.”

The garden spans 10m long by three metres wide, and has such herbs as basil, coriander and mint, as well as lettuce and tomatoes.

“I was amazed when the girls told me about the garden. For people to think of helping Nat and I is amazing,” Rory said.

She appreciates food grown without chemicals and said the garden was a way of bringing people together.

“It will be nice for me in the winter when it is quite isolated and I can get a few people together and talk about what we can plant,” Rory said.

Her twin sister Nat also has MS. Rory was diagnosed two years ago and Nat has been living with the disease for 15 years.

“The chance of twins getting MS is three per cent,” Rory said.

The project was overseen by Food4Good, which provides initiatives to help create sustainable practices in communities by helping people adopt simple approaches to living.


The Star: Mary MacKillop names school leaders "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

MARY MacKillop Catholic Regional College students gathered to celebrate the initiation of the school’s leaders for 2016 on Wednesday.

College principal David Leslie said all students have had a stellar start to the new school year.

“The event marked the formal start of the school year which also marks 30 years of Catholic education at Mary MacKillop Catholic Regional College,” he said.

“The students have had a terrific start to the year. They are a credit to themselves and to our school.”

Mr Leslie announced the new college captains of the year as Janie Gordon and Kaj Patterson, who will receive help from vice captains Matilda McNeil and Anthony Argento over the course of the year.

“The badges they were presented with will serve as a reminder of the roles of responsibility they have accepted in taking up these positions,” Mr Leslie said.

The dux of 2015, Sarah McCahon, also spoke to students about what it takes to achieve success in Year 12.

“At the end of Year 12 your success is measured by a final score however you must remember that a single score does not define you. Personal achievements made over the course of the year are much more important,” she said.

“It is important to establish a realistic study plan. Your year should not be horrid. Never feel like you are alone.

“Listen to your teachers. They are dedicated and they want to help you. Spend time with friends occasionally away from study and do your best. If you do your best, you will be proud of yourself regardless of your score.”


The Star: Bike pumps serve coast "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

CYCLISTS are free to explore local rail trails with bike pumps available in three Bass Coast locations.

In a Bass Coast Shire Council initiative to promote healthier lifestyles, the bike pumps were installed in Wonthaggi, Inverloch and Newhaven to ensure cyclists get the most out of their rides.

Council’s recreation and culture coordinator Mark Lindsay said Wonthaggi’s bike pump is located at the visitor’s centre because it’s central to the rail trail.

“Newhaven’s visitor centre was chosen because it is near a shared pathway and the Inverloch Hub was chosen because it is a central location,” Mr Lindsay said.

There are many great trails for cyclists to discover in Bass Coast. In four kilometres, cyclists can travel from Anderson to Kilcunda in a gradual descent through farmlands, past Kilcunda’s largest coal mine, Mitchell Mine.

Travelling from Kilcunda to the Mouth of the Powlett, cyclists can cross the trestle bridge over superb surf and sandy beaches. This ride is three kilometres.

From the Mouth of the Powlett, ride to Dalyston station. The three kilometre trail passes the site of the former Dalyston railways station where the trail is elevated to the level of the former station platform.

Another 2.3 kilometres leads to Lower Powlett Road, a popular fishing location. There is a clear view of the Wonthaggi wind farm from this position.

Two and a half kilometres from Lower Powlett Road is South Dudley Road, which includes views of open farmland and a variety of native plant species. The Wonthaggi State Coal Mine is visible, as well as the mine rescue station.

South Dudley Road takes cyclists back into Wonthaggi in 1.2 kilometres, completing the scenic journey.

With an increased exercise and cycling culture booming in Bass Coast, the council initiative provides additional support and encouragement for bicycle use.

“As far as we are aware the pumps have been used regularly,” Mr Lindsay sa...


The Star: Show success at Korumburra "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

NUMBERS may have been down slightly on previous years, but the Korumburra Agricultural and Pastoral Society still managed to put on an excellent show.

Society president Doug Appleton said many events across the weekend competed with the show for attention.

“It was a little bit quieter than last year and we had less rides and sideshows, but the atmosphere was terrific,” he said.

“The heat on Saturday may have kept them away too.”

Mr Appleton said in some sections, entries were up, while in others, entries were down.

“The numbers in the horses on Sunday were good. We had a lot more sheep than in previous years and the woodworking section was good. I think the numbers increased in that section from last year,” he said.

Mr Appleton said the general exhibit shed, with home crafts, knitting, crochet, and cooking were not as well supported as in recent years.

For the first time this year, the South Gippsland Buskers Festival was held at the show.

“There could have been a few more buskers, but there was good quality music played throughout the afternoon,” Mr Appleton said.

Crowd favourite illusionist Lachlan Wilde, who turned 16 on Saturday, was at the show for the third year in a row.

“He is excellent and as always, drew a large crowd of children and adults,” Mr Appleton said.

Something new in 2016 was the dog flyball, which Mr Appleton said went off well.

“They drew a large crowd,” he said.

Work will now start on organising the 122nd Korumburra Show for 2017.


The Star: Art show success "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

LONG time supporter of the Rotary Club of Korumburra’s art show, South Gippsland Shire Council mayor Cr Bob Newton, officially opened the 39th annual event on Friday night.

The opening night attracted an excellent crowd, and many more on Saturday and Sunday who came to see the 234 quality paintings exhibited.

Judge Judith Garde had the unenviable task of choosing the category winners and as there can only be so many winning entries, she encouraged artists to keep persisting by entering art shows.

Prize money worth $6650 was distributed, and the Rotary Club sincerely thanked 34 sponsors for their generous support. A special thank you was given to the Marilyn Sim for her leadership of the Art Show Organising Committee, ensuring another highly successful Rotary Art Show.

There was a special occasion during the evening, when the Best Local Entry Award was named in honour of John and Lynette Kurrle.

Unfortunately, Lynette passed away a few years ago. John has been a member of Rotary since before the art show started 39 years ago.

John and Lynette did an enormous amount of work for the art shows over those years and John is still an important member of the organising committee.

The other major part of the evening was the auctioning of the two Lance Sullivan paintings by auctioneer, Eddie Hams. The first painting, completed in 1938, was sold for $540, whilst the second painting, completed in 1983, sold for $680. It was great to see these paintings go to local people who are passionate about their art collections.


The Star: Locals vocal at gas rally "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

SOUTH Gippslanders were among the 250 people to gather on the steps of Parliament House in Melbourne last Tuesday, February 9 to call on the State Government to ban onshore gas.

The group also called for an ambitious Victorian Renewable Energy Target (VRET) to encourage more growth in the renewable energy market.

Among them were members of Coal and CSG Free Mirboo North.

Flanked by politicians, community groups from throughout Victoria were well represented, from western to eastern Victoria, and to South Gippsland.

Contingents from Melbourne demonstrated the growing alliance between regional and metropolitan communities.

“Coal and CSG Free Mirboo North were pleased to join with the Melbourne supporters who did an amazing job organising the rally and attracting high calibre speakers to the event,” Coal and CSG Free Mirboo North member Marg Thomas said.

“It was interesting to see the Liberal Shadow Minister for Renewables David Southwick stand with Trades Hall Council secretary Luke Hilakari and the Greens to call for a growth in renewables, although none except the Greens committed to a total ban.”

The Greens were well represented by Member for Melbourne Ellen Sandell and Eastern Metropolitan Region MLC Samantha Dunn, who was also on the committee for the Inquiry into Unconventional Gas. Both addressed the rally.

Ms Dunn highlighted her experiences on the inquiry committee, in particular the evidence presented by regional people concerning the immense toll the threat of the onshore gas industry has on the lives of those affected; the uncertainty surrounding their livelihoods, way of life and environment.

She also stated all Greens support a total ban on onshore gas.

Mr Halikari said, “The Andrews Government has the opportunity to put the wind back in the sails by setting an ambitious VRET. It’s the right thing for the environment and the right thing for Victorian workers.”

Mr Southwick sa...


The Star: Drought relief fun day "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

A GROUP of Nyora residents have banded together to put on a huge fundraising day for farmers in Queensland and New South Wales suffering from severe drought.

A small group of friends, including Janie Stace, Jess Trewin and Kerri McFarlane, have been seeing and hearing of the hardship farmers in Queensland and New South Wales have been facing.

In the grip of drought they are struggling to find feed for their cattle and sheep, and are reduced to selling or destroying their stock. Struggling to put food on their table and survive themselves, the three women heard and followed a few drought relief agencies on Facebook and wanted to help.

In the beginning it was going to be a barbecue with a few mates and it has now snowballed into something far bigger and better.

The “Farmily” Fun Day has been organised for this Sunday, February 21 at TGS-Metro Quarries site at Nyora, on the South Gippsland Highway where the working horse and tractor rally takes place near the Lang Lang Golf Club.

There is loads of family fun including a kidz zone with jumping castles, animal nursery, face painting, photo booth, fairy floss and popcorn, a massive silent auction, 25 raffle prizes on the day, whip cracking demonstration, car and bike display, market stalls, working vintage engines, clydesdales, live music including Ruckus, Gary Hunt and Greg Kirkland.

Catering is being provided by Koo Wee Rup and Bass Valley Lions and also Melbourne Spit hire.

The razzle dazzle cinema is showing pictures and stories of how farmers are affected by the drought and also the help they are receiving, the downside and upside of drought.

All proceeds raised at the “Farmily” Day will be donated to Drought Angels, Aussie Helpers, Buy a Bale and Beyond Blue. “All these groups work tirelessly to help farmers and we want to help them as much as we can,” Mrs Stace said.



The Star: Teen artist bound for Fiji "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

THERE are two things Venus Bay’s Jacqui Connell is passionate about – art and surf.

The 19 year old set out to mix her two interests together by turning surfboards into works of art. She was thrilled with the response she received on Facebook and is now busily designing beautiful surfboard artworks.

Her artwork began as scribbling for a hobby but has grown into a love for technical drawing. She studied design in Year 12 at Wonthaggi Secondary College, which helped her excel.

“My nan is pretty artistic and I’ve always loved it. I researched what I should use and different designs before starting work on the surfboards. My mum told me about a shop that sells local artwork, so I’m hoping to make a collection and sell my work there,” Jacqui said.

“I have four surfboards at the moment and I plan to find more.”

One of the surfboards she received was rich with history – it appeared in a surf movie by ACMI, which was produced on Phillip Island.

Signed by locals who attended the premiere, Bass Coast Shire Council’s youth planning and policy officer Geraldine Archibald passed on the surfboard to Jacqui on one condition – she take it with her on her once in a lifetime journey to Fiji.

Jacqui was the recipient of a youth scholarship through council and Foundation for Young Australians. The scholarship was for the Young Australians Experience Asia volunteer placement program, which will give her the opportunity to work with a marine conservation in Fiji for three months.

“Geraldine asked me to take photos of the surfboard in Fiji and put them up on Facebook as part of my journey. This will give the surfboard more significant history,” Jacqui said.

“The plan is to draw a Fijian theme on it while I’m away and ride it over there.”

Jacqui will leave for Fiji in September. She chose the destination because of her love for the water.

“We could go to places like Nepal, Laos and Thailand and there were other...


The Star: Ratepayers rally around rate cap "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"


RATEPAYERS are continuing to demand Bass Coast Shire Council rein in rates, in the wake of a drop in session about rate capping in Inverloch on Monday, February 8.

Bass Coast ratepayers insisted council abide by the State Government’s 2.5 per cent rate cap instead of applying for a 4.7 per cent variation.

“What we have heard is consistent with feedback from the four workshops, one on one discussions and through our online communication channels,” council’s general manager governance and organisation development Mark Brady said.

“A majority of people want council to stick to the rate cap of 2.5 per cent, fund capital works programs, and continue to find efficiencies and savings.”

A community based petition originating in Inverloch showed evidence of ratepayers’ unity against varying the cap.

The petition closed on Sunday and although the number of signatories has not yet been tallied, Inverloch petitioner Mohan de Run expects it to top 2000.

Council’s CEO Paul Buckley reported a small segment of ratepayers have opposed the rate cap, but Mr de Run said the sampling of signatures on the petitions puts the figures at under three opposing persons per 100.

“The absolutely overwhelming response – 97 per cent – on the street in the past three weeks is council must operate with efficiency and stay within the rate cap,” Mr de Run said.

“The response from Phillip Island in particular has been amazing, with people queuing to sign.”

Mr de Run attended Inverloch’s drop in session and although he appreciated the different arrangement, he felt feedback would have been similar to the ideas presented at the workshops.

“We reinforced the need for council to cut costs and work with more efficiency within the 2.5 per cent rate cap,” he said.

Although only 12 people attended Inverloch’s drop in session, Mr Brady said it was a good opportunity to have some in depth discussions with ratepayers....


The Star: Train debacle hits home "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

NATIONAL MPs have slammed the State Government for the V/Line crisis by highlighting the human face behind the fiasco occurring on the Gippsland line.

Eastern Victoria Region MLC Melina Bath and Morwell MLA Russell Northe questioned the Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan in parliament last week over concerns residents with disabilities were not being adequately catered for during the V/Line timetable disruptions.

Ms Bath highlighted the case of Mirboo North resident Taylor Connelly, a regular V/Line commuter with an acquired brain injury who had been significantly affected by the train debacle and unable to attend her medical appointments in Melbourne.

“She suffers from stress and anxiety, and she says she cannot actually cope with sitting inside a replacement bus because she cannot tolerate confined spaces,” Ms Bath told the parliament.

Ms Bath said Ms Connelly was “disappointed and frustrated” and had written to her asking: “I know that we are in the minority but does the Labor Government not spare a thought for the disabled trying to use bus services?”

Both National MPs have called on the minister to immediately put in place arrangements for people who have a physical or mental disability so all passengers can have access to safe and comfortable travel to Melbourne during this time of train service disruption.


Byron Bay Blog: Local Husk Distillers Release a New Australian Style of Rum "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Husk Distillers, the Northern Rivers own craft distillery, have released the very first barrel of their paddock-to-bottle Agricole rum – Husk Virgin Cane Rum. First offered in December just in time for Christmas, the retail allocation sold out in 3 days, with thirty reserve bottles landing in selected venues around the North Coast and Australia this week.

‘The release marks a new chapter for us at Husk Distillers, and also for Australian rum in general,” said Paul Messenger, founder and distiller at Husk. “We started working on a new style agricole rum five years ago and this first release was made from sugar cane harvested at our plantation distillery in North Tumbulgum in 2012.”

Husk Rum is made from first press juice of cane cut and crushed on the same day, together with yeast propagated in the distillery, which is overlooked by Mt Warning. The fermentation takes 5-6 days and is longer and slower than most Caribbean agricole rums. The rum is then double distilled in a unique copper pot still before being aged for a minimum of three years.

‘We use a double barrel ageing process. We first fill new heavily charred American oak barrels for 6-12 months from where most of the colour and much of the flavour is derived. We then transfer the rum to finish in ex bourbon, ex port or old reserve barrels for further flavour development and mellowing.’



Echonetdaily: Friends and family paddle out for Jasmin "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Family and friends paddled out at Wategos last Sunday to celebrate the life of ‘Jasmin’ Justine Ingledew who died unexpectedly recently. A memorial service at the Mullumbimby Civic Hall last Friday attracted some 150 people. Photo courtesy Critters and Creatures

Family and friends paddled out at Wategos last Sunday to celebrate the life of ‘Jasmin’ Justine Ingledew who died unexpectedly recently. A memorial service at the Mullumbimby Civic Hall last Friday attracted some 150 people.
Photo courtesy Critters and Creatures

The post Friends and family paddle out for Jasmin appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Echonetdaily: Chopper rescues Eureka mountain biker "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

A mountain bike rider who took a tumble on private property at Eureka was winched to safety by the crew of the Life Saver Rescue Helicopter yesterday (February 15). Photo contributed

A mountain bike rider who took a tumble on private property at Eureka was winched to safety by the crew of the Life Saver Rescue Helicopter yesterday (February 15). Photo contributed

A mountain-bike rider had to be rescued by the Life Saver Rescue Helicopter late yesterday afternoon after he took a tumble from his bike in rough terrain on private property at Eureka.

The patient could not be moved because of suspected spinal injuries and the helicopter was called in because of difficult access for a road ambulance.

Helicopter and NSW Ambulance paramedics stabilised the patient, who was winched to safety and flown to Gold Coast University Hospital in a stable condition.

Earlier the helicopter was called out to a property west of Kyogle where a 57-year-old woman had fallen 30 metres down an embankment.

She was also treated as a spinal injury patient and flown to Gold Coast University Hospital.

The post Chopper rescues Eureka mountain biker appeared first on...


Echonetdaily: Lismore labelled ‘drug driving capital’ of Australia "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Greens MLC David Shoebridge is interviewed by Steve Marshall of A Current Affair. (Darren Coyne)

Greens MLC David Shoebridge is interviewed by Steve Marshall of A Current Affair. (Darren Coyne)

Darren Coyne

Channel Nine’s A Current Affair has labelled Lismore the drug-driving capital of Australia, but even the show’s reporter admits it’s ‘not that straight forward’.

In a segment aired last night, reporter Steve Marshall visited Lismore on a day when 46 people appeared in Lismore Local Court charged with drug driving.

He pointed out that on another occasion, around 70 people appeared on the court list to face the same charge.

Traffic and Highway Patrol Command Acting Assistant Commissioner Stuart Smith told the program in no uncertain terms that ‘if you’ve got drugs in your system you shouldn’t be behind the wheel of a car’

But in a twist for the controversial (and some would say unbalanced) current affairs program, the segment put forward some points that would no doubt please local activists.

Mr Marshall pointed out the while the tests used by police are capable of testing for a range of illicit substances, they only test for cannabis, methamphetamine and MDMA.

Police do not test for cocaine, which is widely regarde...


Echonetdaily: Cash-strapped council wants vollies to tart up park "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Byron Shire Council is calling on volunteers to help restore this much-loved but well worn park. Photo contributed

Byron Shire Council is calling on volunteers to help restore this much-loved but well worn park. Photo contributed

Byron Shire Council seems to have enough money in the coffers to embark on a controversial ‘upgrade’ of Brunswick Heads’ main street but when it comes to a much-needed make-over of a local park, it’s calling on residents to come to the rescue.

The council has announced that Sunday February 28 is to be renamed ‘Beautify Bruns Day’ and it’s looking for ‘community minded green thumbs and anyone who can pitch in with a bit of elbow grease’ help out with garden planting, mulching and watering in the park next to the Brunswick Heads Library on Fingal Street.

Volunteers have even been asked to bring their own gardening tools.

Byron mayor Simon Richardson said the day would be ‘a great way to connect with the shire’s urban landscape’ adding that ‘volunteering is one of the most sustainable ways we can maintain and support civic pride.’

‘With new turf and replanting of surrounding garden beds, we’re aiming to turn this space back into a great place for local families to meet and relax,’ he said.

‘Located right next to the Library, it’s a perfect place to let little ones to have a run before heading indoor to explore the world of storytelling and fun.

‘And if we have enough time,...


Echonetdaily: Memory van helps dispel dementia myths "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

The Alzheimers Australia Memory Van, which will soon be seen in the streets of the northern rivers. Photo contributed

The Alzheimers Australia Memory Van, which will soon be seen in the streets of the northern rivers. Photo contributed

Northern Rivers Social Development Council has partnered with Alzheimer’s Australia NSW to bring the Memory Van to the northern rivers.

The Alzheimer’s Australia NSW Memory Van will be visiting Casino, Lismore, Banora Point, Tweed Heads, Ballina, Ocean Shores, Brunswick Heads, Alstonville, Yamba and Grafton this month with information about dementia for the community.

There will also be free presentations on healthy brain ageing. These presentations will address the myths surrounding dementia and provide information relating to normal ageing and memory loss. The sessions also discuss strategies to help maintain brain health. Registrations for these sessions are essential.

The Alzheimer’s Australia NSW Memory Van is a mobile education resource that travels statewide to help raise awareness on the importance of brain health and dementia risk reduction.

Representatives from the Northern Rivers Social Development Council (NRSDC) and local services along with staff at the Alzheimer’s Australia NSW Memory Van can help i...


Echonetdaily: Aviator calls on council to ditch the donga "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

The location of the proposed donga, adjacent to the Evans Head Memorial Aerodrome. (supplied)

The location of the proposed donga, adjacent to the Evans Head Memorial Aerodrome. (supplied)

Former Ballina shire councillor and keen aviator Margaret Howes has called on Richmond Valley Council to reject a proposal to build a donga village adjacent to the airport at Evans Head.

The proposed village would house up to 400 workers employed on the upgrade of the Pacific Highway.

Former councillor Margaret Howes is not happy about plans to build a donga adjacent to the airport at Evans Head. (pic courtesy of

Former councillor Margaret Howes is not happy about plans to build a donga adjacent to the airport at Evans Head. (pic courtesy of

The application has been on display for comment,...


Echonetdaily: Dead man found trapped under car of Nth Qld’s top cop "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Ryan Savage, 37, was found dead after being trapped under the vehicle of Assistant Commissioner Paul Taylor (pictured) as he drove into the car park of the Cairns police complex early Monday morning.

Ryan Savage, 37, was found dead after being trapped under the vehicle of Assistant Commissioner Paul Taylor (pictured) as he drove into the car park of the Cairns police complex early Monday morning.

BRISBANE – [AAP] Queensland’s ethical standards command branch will conduct investigations into the death of a Longreach butcher run over by north Queensland’s most senior police officer.

Ryan Savage, 37, was found dead after being trapped under the vehicle of Assistant Commissioner Paul Taylor as he drove into the car park of the Cairns police complex early Monday morning.

Police have told AAP the investigation will look at whether the father-of-two was lying unconscious or dead in the down ramp to the car park when he was hit at about 4.20am.


Echonetdaily: EU could break up, says EC chief "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

European Council president Donald Tusk at the 'Thermatic Pledging Session' at in London on Thursday February 4, 2016. He warned the EU could break up over strain from mass migration and a deal to keep Britain in the union. Photo Ben Stansall / Pool via AP

European Council president Donald Tusk at the ‘Thermatic Pledging Session’ at in London on Thursday February 4, 2016. He warned the EU could break up over strain from mass migration and a deal to keep Britain in the union. Photo Ben Stansall / Pool via AP


European Council president Donald Tusk has warned just days before an EU summit that the 28-nation bloc could break up under strain from mass migration and a deal to keep Britain in the union.

Speaking in Bucharest, Tusk warned on Monday that ‘this is a critical moment. It is high time we started listening to each other’s arguments more than to our own.’

He said it was ‘natural that positions harden closer to crunch time,’ three days before a ‘crucial’ EU summit, which will have ‘the two biggest challenges to the future of the European Union on the agenda, Britain’s membership of the EU and migration crisis.’

Tusk said that ‘the risk of break-up is real. This process is indeed ver...


Echonetdaily: Lismore residents to demand end to ‘war on trees’ "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

harvested treesLismore residents are being invited to a meeting that will call on premier Mike Baird to end his ‘war on trees’.

A community meeting to discuss the government’s plans to make it easier for property developers and big agribusiness to remove trees and clear native bushland will be held at The Presbyterian Hall in Lismore on Thursday.

NSW premier Mike Baird. Photo AAP

NSW premier Mike Baird. Photo AAP

The meeting is one of many being organized by the NSW Nature Conservation Council and the Total Environment Centre across the state.

Organisers say the government plans to abolish the Native Vegetation Act and the Threatened Species Conservation Act and replace it with a new Biodiversity Conservation Act.

They say the new Act would put landmark trees and bushland at risk, renew broad scale land clearing, and add pressure to the state’s...


Echonetdaily: Aussies in hunt for Grammy wins "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Melbourne indie singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett is on the hunt for a Grammy award. Photo contributed

Melbourne indie singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett is on the hunt for a Grammy award. Photo contributed

LOS ANGELES – [AAP] Melbourne indie singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett will join an esteemed list including The Beatles, Adele and Carly Simon if she wins the Grammy Award for Best New Artist.

The Grammys, divided into two ceremonies in Los Angeles with the first beginning from 7am on Tuesday (AEDT) and the main broadcast event from midday (AEDT), has three other Australian nominees: Keith Urban; West Australian psychedelic rock band Tame Impala; and Melbourne future-soul quartet Hiatus Kaiyote.

Taylor Swift, Bluesfest headliner Kendrick Lamar and The Weeknd are expected to compete for the most wins, while highlights at the main ceremony are expected to be Lady Gaga’s tribute to David Bowie and Eagles band members and Jackson Browne honouring the late Glenn Frey.

The post Aus...


Echonetdaily: Fatal missile strikes on Syrian hospitals "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

t least eight staff members are missing after airstrikes at a hospital affiliated with Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in northern Syria, believed to have been carried out by Russian jets. Photo Sam Taylor/MSF

t least eight staff members are missing after airstrikes at a hospital affiliated with Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in northern Syria, believed to have been carried out by Russian jets. Photo Sam Taylor/MSF

AMMAN/BEIRUT – [RAW] At least 23 civilians were killed when missiles hit three hospitals and a school in rebel-held Syrian towns, residents say, as Russian-backed Syrian troops intensified their push toward the rebel stronghold of Aleppo.

Fourteen people were killed in the town of Azaz near the Turkish border on Monday when missiles slammed into a school sheltering families fleeing the offensive and the children’s hospital, two residents and a medic said.

Bombs also hit another refugee shelter south of the town and a convoy of trucks, another resident said.

‘We have been moving scores of screaming children from the hospital,’ said medic Juma Rahal. At least two children were killed and scores of people injured, he said.

Activists posted video online purporting to show the damaged hospital. Three crying babies lay in incubators in a ward...


Echonetdaily: Girl, 6, dies from snake bite in rural NSW "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Be wary. Brown snakes come in different shades and don't always even look brown, warn snake handlers. AAP Image/North Queensland Wildlife Care, Trish Prendergast

Be wary. Brown snakes come in different shades and don’t always even look brown, warn snake handlers. AAP Image/North Queensland Wildlife Care, Trish Prendergast

SYDNEY –  [AAP] A six-year-old girl has died after being bitten by a brown snake on a property in outback NSW.

The girl was bitten at a property near Walgett, in the state’s north, on the afternoon of February 5 and was transferred to the local hospital to receive anti-venom.

She was airlifted to Sydney Children’s Hospital and placed on life support but was transferred back to Walgett Hospital after her condition deteriorated, and she died on Saturday, police say.

The little girl’s death has prompted NSW Ambulance to issue a timely reminder to be wary of snakes as the warmer months continue.

Tips include calling Triple Zero immediately after a snake bite and to always check clothing and items left outside before picking them up.

If bitten on a limb, apply a pressure immobilisation bandage until help arrives, but not so tight it will cut...


Common Ground North Coast: Breaking from the mould with Mojo Juju "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

5620MojojujuNewtown-114 (2)
In many ways, Mojo Juju could be touted as the quintessential artist for this years Bluesfest. With a diversity of musical genre’s ultimately ‘un-defining’ who or what Mojo Juju represents, her 2016 performance is due to be anything besides ordinary and appropriately merges her blues and soul background with a more modern pop sound.

Having last played Bluesfest in 2010 as part of the larger contingent ‘Mojo Juju and the Snake Oil Merchants’, Juju is promising to bring with her a very different performance, with two solo albums under her belt since 2012.

If there’s one thing that she is known for, it’s breaking the mould. With her characteristic ambiguity towards being pigeon-holed by any musical or societal type-casting, Mojo Juju’s 2015 album ‘Seeing Red/ Feeling Blue’ is an exploration that touches on rock, blues, soul, jazz and a notable pop influence.

It’s a break away from her grittier debut solo effort, which will no-doubt divide her followers to date, but as I discovered on speaking with her, that’s not something that will hold her back from being authentic and honouring her own musical journey.

With an obvious fire in her belly and desire to communicate a powerful emotive punch through her music, I was unsure what to expect on talking with Juju for the first time. Who I found was an astute, sensitive and very authentic artist who is unafraid of showing who she is to the world and obviously striving to question what and where to go to next.

In the lead up to the festival next month, I caught up with Mojo Juju and chatted about the new album and what we can expect from her at Bluesfest.

CG: So 6 years since your last Bluesfest appearance Mojo, are you looking forward to it?

MJ: Yeah for su......


Echonetdaily: 150,000 penguins die in Antarctica "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Adelie penguin colony on Antarctica. Photo AAP/Mary Evans/Ardea/M. Watson

Adelie penguin colony on Antarctica. Photo AAP/Mary Evans/Ardea/M. Watson

SANTIAGO –  [AP] A new scientific study says an estimated 150,000 Adelie penguins have died in Cape Denison, Antarctica in the five years since a giant iceberg blocked their main access to food.

The study by Australian and New Zealand researchers was recently published in the journal Antarctic Science.

It says a 97km-long iceberg crashed and got stuck in Commonwealth Bay, blocking access to their natural feeding areas starting in December 2010.

The huge piece of ice forced the birds to walk more than 60km in search of food, gradually reducing the population to just a few thousand.

The survey was conducted in 2013-14 by scientists at The Climate Change Research Centre at the University of NSW and New Zealand’s West Coast Penguin Trust.

The post 150,000 penguins die in Antarctica appeared first on Echonetdaily.


Echonetdaily: Robert charged taxpayers for Qld mine trip "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Australian Minister for Human Services Stuart Robert during Question Time at Parliament House on Monday. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

Australian Minister for Human Services Stuart Robert during Question Time at Parliament House. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

SYDNEY –  [AAP] Dumped Liberal minister Stuart Robert reportedly spent more than $1600 of taxpayers money to fly to the opening of a north Queensland goldmine in which he and his family had bought shares.

Department of Finance documents show Mr Robert made claims on the public purse for return flights from Brisbane to Townsville on April 10, 2013, the day he visited the $200 million Mt Carlton mine of gold producer Evolution Mining, The Australian newspaper reports.

Mr Robert charged $1091 for the flights from Brisbane to Townsville and return to Brisbane and chalked up Comcar limousine charges of $205 and a further $376 travel allowance for a night in Brisbane before inspecting his private investment, the report said.

At the time he was opposition spokesman for defence, science technology and personnel, with no official role related to the mine, which he had bought shares in the previous year.

Mr Robert had close ties with one of Evolution Mining’s directors at the time, Paul Marks, who had more than six million shares in the com...


Echonetdaily: Four US journos arrested in Bahrain "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Arrested journalist Anna Day. Photo Twitter

Arrested journalist Anna Day. Photo Twitter

DUBAI – [AP] Bahrain has arrested four American journalists covering the anniversary of its 2011 uprising amid a long crackdown on dissent in the tiny Gulf nation, witnesses say.

Police said they detained four Americans for providing ‘false information that they were tourists,’ while also alleging one took part in an attack on its officers.

The US Embassy in Manama said it was ‘aware of the arrest of four US citizens in Bahrain’ on Sunday but that it could not discuss the case due to privacy concerns.

Police said one of the journalists was a woman and three were men. Witnesses identified the woman as Anna Therese Day, an American freelance journalist who had contributed previously to The Huffington Post.

In a statement, The Post told The Associated Press that Day, who had blogged on the website and appeared on its HuffPost Live program, was not on assignment for the outlet at the time of her arrest.

‘The safety of journalists is of utmost importance to The Huffington Post and we have security measu...


Focus On Fauna: Turtle spotting "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

You may have seen our local turtle species, the Eastern Snake-necked Turtle (Chelodina longicollis) heading overland or perilously crossing the road, usually after heavy rain. But in the water it is far more cryptic, and often all you see is its snout and eyes protruding above the water-line (see photo above), until it sinks to […]


Echonetdaily: Koala rescued at Black Rocks had a friend in deed "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

Members of the Threatened Species Conservation Society Inc wish to thank the caring and dedicated volunteers of Friends of Koala who met at the Black Rocks sports field on Sunday, 7 February, to release a 12-month-old female koala (Lucia).

She was returned to the tree in which she was captured on 13 December 2015 after receiving treatment for conjunctivitis (a symptom of the stress-related disease chlamydia).

Without early intervention by Friends of the Koala (who also assisted with Lucia’s capture) and care/treatment received at the Currumbin Wildlife Hospital, this koala would most likely have developed ovarian cysts, been euthanased or suffered a slow agonising death in the bush.

Details and photos of the release of Lucia can be found on the FOK facebook. Any injured or sick koalas should be reported to Friends of the Koala hot line: 02 6622 1233.

David Norris, president, Threatened Species Conservation Society 

The post Koala rescued at Black Rocks had a friend in deed appeared first on Echonetdaily.


North Coast Voices: Twitter owned Liberal MP Dennis Jensen over climate change stance "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

This tweet exchange made me smile:

To be fair the Liberal Member for Tangney (WA), Dennis Geoffrey Jensen, left university with a credible BAppSc (RMIT) MSc (Melb) PhD (Monash) which qualified him in the field of biology/biotechnology, physics and material science and he did work as a research scientist for the CSIRO between 1995 to 1999.

He was on the Advisory Board of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Anti Matter/Matter Research however his register of members’ interests declarations do not make clear exactly when he began and when he vacated this non-paying position.

However, as he was employed as an air traffic controller for around three years before he managed to find science-related employment,...


North Coast Voices: Next problem for Australian Prime Minister Turnbull - his pick as Treasurer "IndyWatch Feed Northcoast"

There is such a lack of talent on the government benches in Canberra that Malcolm Turnbull would have had few ministers to choose from, even if he didn’t owe Scott Morrison the treasury portfolio as exchange for his ‘support’ in the leadership challenge which saw Turnbull gain the prime ministership.

Even after three changes of portfolio, Morrison continues implementing his far-right Christian ideology which delights in screwing over the poor and vulnerable while rewarding god’s chosen - the rich.

As this report in The Sydney Morning Herald on 12 February 2016 indicates:

The most shocking thing in the Treasury analysis delivered to Scott Morrison on January 25 isn't the finding that a cut in income tax funded by a lift in the goods and services tax wouldn't boost the economy at all.

It's what Morrison asked the Treasury to model.

He asked it to model a lift in GST from 10 to 15 per cent and then ...

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Sunshine Coast Birdlife Australia Blog: Mid week Outing - Baroon Pocket Dam - South Side "IndyWatch Feed Seq"

Sorry about the late notice but wednesday 17 feb  we have a mid week walk led by John Malings at Martin Williams Nature Walk, at the south end of Baroon Pocket Dam. Please meet in the car park at 8am.


The Gap Year and Beyond: Sun baking at Double Creek "IndyWatch Feed Melbourne"

On an early morning walk around the Double Creek Nature Walk, near Mallacoota, I came across several birds having a dust bath and soaking in some sun. I watched Eastern Yellow Robins dust bathing followed by a spot of sun baking. It was a prime spot amongst the thick forest and the Robins were moved along by a pair of Lewin’s Honeyeater who spent a bit more time at the baking spot. Normally Lewin’s are a little hard to get near and photograph but as I was slow moving and crouched down they were happy to ignore me and just get on with soaking up the rays.

I have seen several bird species at different locations sun baking: magpies actually lying on their backs in sand on the edge of a golf sand bunker – I thought they were dead until I walked up to have a closer look….not sure who got the bigger fright. I have seen pigeons with a wing in the air lying on the ground and then the Robins and Lewin’s honeyeater at Double Creek. It is not fully understood why birds do this: part of feather maintenance, drying off after a bath (though I watched these birds have a dust bath and not use water), irritating feather mites to help find and remove them, just enjoying the sun on a cool morning. Whatever the reason it was interesting to watch and photograph.

Lewin's Honeyeater Sun-baking, Double Creek Nature Walk, Mallacoota

Lewin’s Honeyeater Sun-baking, Double Creek Nature Walk, Mallacoota



AWPA Sydney News: UNHCR notes PNG progress on West Papuan refugees "IndyWatch Feed Sydney"

UNHCR notes PNG progress on West Papuan refugees
Updated at 4:55 pm today
                        Cross border flow between Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. Photo: RNZ / Johnny Blades


Friends of the Box-Ironbark Forests: Here we go again "IndyWatch Feed Cvic"

Like many other groups, FOBIF has been invited to make a submission to the fire planning process this year. The substance of our submission is as follows:

Our views on fire management have not changed since our 2015 submission, the substance of which we have reproduced below. Our overarching concerns are:
1. We are concerned about the conduct of large area burns [see below], and would like some detailed information about the proposed ecological and safety objectives in these operations [for example, what exactly is the ecological objective in burning Gough’s Range?]

Fryers Ridge Road, February 2016: the grey foliage is Long Leaved Box regrowth. Last year's roadside scalping has obliterated harmless groundcovers, but has led to proliferation of eucalypts which are likely to obscure sightlines within a few years. Better ways of controlling vegetation are available--and recommended.

Fryers Ridge Road, February 2016: the grey foliage is Long Leaved Box regrowth. Last year’s roadside scalping has obliterated harmless groundcovers, but has led to proliferation of eucalypts which are likely to obscure sightlines within a few years. Better ways of controlling vegetation are available–and recommended.

2. We understand that a new burn has been added, in the Fryers Ranges. We would like more information on this.
3. We are more concerned than ever about track works in bushland. We understand that these are partly designed to improve access and safety for fire...


Castan Centre for Human Rights Law: Do we need a new Human Rights Commissioner? Yes, but it’s complicated… "IndyWatch Feed Melbourne"

Adam Fletcher

Tim Wilson has just announced his resignation as human rights commissioner to seek Liberal Party preselection for the federal seat of Goldstein. Wilson resigned from the party in 2013 to work at the Australian Human Rights Commission and is now heading back into the political fold.

So the question now is: does Australia still need a human rights commissioner? If so, should an incoming commissioner have the same “freedom” mandate as Wilson?

First, a little historical context. The role is provided for in the Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986, and Brian Burdekin was appointed to it upon the commission’s establishment in 1986. Next came more human rights luminaries – Chris Sidoti, Sev Ozdowski and Graeme Innes – who each simultaneously held the role of disability discrimination commissioner. In the years leading up to Wilson’s appointment, from 2009-2012, the commission president, Catherine Branson, held the title, but the role was widely considered to be redundant.

It therefore came as a surprise when the new Coalition government appointed a full-time human rights commissioner in 2013, especially as it was Wilson, who was a director of an organisation committed to the commission’s abolition – the Institute of Public Affairs.

Attorney-General Brandis...

15:42 Islamic school refuses to repay millions to Department of Education "IndyWatch Feed Capricornia"

Malek Fahed Islamic school in Greenacre is under investigation

Malek Fahed Islamic school in Greenacre is under investigation Photo: Steven Siewert

The Malek Fahd Islamic School has accused the state government of breaching racial discrimination laws in ordering it to repay $8.5 million in taxpayer funding.

The school, which educates about 2500 Muslim students in Sydney’s south-west, is refusing to pay back the financial assistance it received between 2010 and 2011, three years after the NSW Minister for Education, Adrian Piccoli, declared that it had been unlawfully operating for profit.

In court documents, Malek Fahd said legislation introduced into NSW in October 2014 is contrary to the federal Racial Discrimination Act.

The legislation allowed the minister for education to declare that any financial assistance provided could be recovered as a debt if a school had operated for profit.

Last month, the school launched a cross-claim, arguing the minister doesn’t have the power to declare that it was operating for profit and recoup the funding. It has further argued that the NSW government still owes it state funding for the period from July 2012 to December 2013, approximately $1.2 million based on previous MySchool data.
The NSW government has asked the Supreme Court to force Malek Fahd to repay the $8.5 million it owes plus legal costs and interest at nine per cent.

Despite the litigation, the school is pushing ahead with rapid expansion plans for its third campus in Hoxton Park, on top of its multi-million dollar operations at Greenacre and Beaumont Hills.
The Greenacre campus received $17.5 million in f...


Bendigo Sustainability Group: Hazeldenes apply for Sustainability Award "IndyWatch Feed Cvic"

Hazedldenes are applying for a sustainability award.

They have installed solar PV and are looking at saving water with washing the chooks.

They also are engaging with community by looking after our environment. They had a group of employees clean up a section of the road for Clean Up Australia Day.

So more than just trying to save energy and water , they are actively engaging with the Community.


Bendigo Sustainability Group: Bendigo Foodshare nominate for a Sustainability Award "IndyWatch Feed Cvic"

LOCAL organisation Foodshare is nominating for a Sustainability Award.

Foodshare collects food from organisations that have overproduction or excess and distribute it to local charities and schools as well as other agencies.


Refugee Action Coalition: Let them stay union model motion "IndyWatch Feed Sydney"

Pass this motion at a union or staff meeting:

Let Them Stay!

This meeting of ______________________ notes:
(i) that 267 asylum seekers, including 91 children (37 of whom are babies born in Australia; and 36 at school) are presently in Australia having been brought here by the immigration department from offshore detention centre of Manus Island and Nauru;
(ii) that they were brought for medical attention and mental health treatment that was not available on Nauru or Manus Island;
(iii) that they have spent around two years in detention and have not been processed;
(iv) that the detrimental effects of long term detention are well known for both children and adults;
(v) that Nauru and Manus Island are not safe for asylum seekers or refugees;
(vi) that five state and territory leaders, including Labor leaders in Victoria, Queensland and South Australia have called on the Turnbull government not to return the 267 to Nauru;
We further note that the Immigration Minister, Peter Dutton has stated that he expects this group of asylum seekers including the 91 children may soon be sent back to Nauru.

We therefore declare our complete opposition to any asylum seeker, or refugee, presently in Australia being sent to Nauru or Manus Island;
Accordingly we:
(i) call on the government not to send any asylum seeker or refugee to Manus Island or Nauru;
(ii) call on the state government to not cooperate with any attempt by the Federal government to return any of the 267 to Nauru;
(iii) will provide all appropriate moral, financial and material support for the campaign by community and refugee advocacy groups to prevent asylum seekers being returned to Manus Island and Nauru

The post Let them stay union model motion appeared first on Refugee Action C...


100 Words To Wanderlust: Where Ocean Ends, Hospitality Begins "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"

Dining al fresco is one glorious thing but to be pointblank riverfront with a bobbing ocean horizon calls for a little more “settling in”. As Queensland’s perfect balmy days seize diners,  warming their very souls and rendering everyone immovable, there is no choice but to lunch; long and lazy, here at Maroochydore’s Ocean Ended.

Owner Paul Holmes offers the very definition of hospitality, welcoming guests with wide-open arms, a compliment or two and the biggest smile on the Sunshine Coast. Formerly of Rickys in Noosa Heads where twilight breezes carried his jovial singing up Noosa river as he waited tables, his sparkle now lingers here on the mottled peaks of the Maroochy.

From freshly caught seafood from the very waters we’re looking at, to cider-glazed local pork with bacon marmalade and an impressive wine list, both menu and host have flair matched only by the holiday blue sky above.


Paul Holmes

OceanEnded ship



OceanEnded champagne

OceanEnded sunset



2RRR: Real World Gardener "IndyWatch Feed Sydney"

Wednesday 18th February

5 – 6pm Real World Gardener
Herb Expert Ian Hemphill will walk you through the many ways to use Chervill in your cooking in Spice It Up. Is Betel leaf something you can grow here in Vegetable Heroes? Continuing the series on “Garden Challenges” with impact damage and what you can do to help in Design Elements. There’s a new variety of Hibiscus for that tropical look in Plant Of The Week.


2RRR: Midday Jazz Wednesdays "IndyWatch Feed Sydney"

Wednesday 17 February
12 – 2pm Midday Jazz
David Stevens will feature recordings of Machito (Frank Grillo), and his Afro-Cuban Orchestra, which Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker and Stan Kenton acknowledged as an influence on them. Also, in the new “Spotlight On Singers” segment, the focus today will be on the great Carmen McRae.


All in the Name of Liberty: Ghosts of bikes and cars "IndyWatch Feed Sydney"

 A nice assembly of garbage bags and bins in front of the Uniting church on King St- it may have been Valentines day, but also a Sunday.

I drew a bunch of portraits of beautiful couples, but not many people got through onto these 2 pages

Happy Chef


2RRR: There Goes That Song Again "IndyWatch Feed Sydney"

Tuesday 16 February
2 – 4pm There Goes That Song Again
This week we continue with the third and final part of our “Johnnie Ray Three O’Clock Special”. We will cover his recordings in the 1960’s.


2RRR: Midday Jazz Monday "IndyWatch Feed Sydney"

Monday 8 February
12 – 2pm Midday Jazz
Midday Jazz will again be somewhat mixed with tracks from Rick Fay’s Big 8, late 1940’s, Benny Goodman’s small groups, early Ella Fitzgerald and various groups recorded at the Blue Angel Jazz Club in the early 1970’s.


St Kilda News: St Kilda Festival has been sealed with a kiss "IndyWatch Feed Melbourne"

St Kilda Festival has been sealed with a kiss as local Elsternwick couple Elizabeth Henderson and Samuel Butcher said ‘I do’ in front of a huge crowd live on the Main Stage. As part of the festival’s Valentine’s Day celebration, the couple were wed by celebrant Kelly Rossi and presented a wedding cake by the […]


MLUG - Melbourne Linux Users Group: start - [Next Meeting *MONDAY* 29th February] "IndyWatch Feed Melbourne"

Address PlaceThe Dan O’Connell HotelAddress 225 Canning St, Carlton. Victoria. 3053 Pre-meeting 6pm front bar Time for Meeting 7:30pm in the function room out back ground level Parking Kay St has 4hr and finishes 6:30pmWebsite Phone (03) 9347 1502Email TOPIC: General geeky discussions on open source, system admin and programming. Feel free to volunteer for a talk on our mailing list.


Ocean Grove Voice: Cobras book finals berth "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"


IN-FORM Collendina booked a BPCA A Grade finals berth following an impressive 91-run away win over Barwon Heads.
Cobra co-coach Ben Ricardo said his team was building a strong foundation ahead of next month’s finals.
“Stoked to secure a finals’ spot and get some reward for our efforts this season,” Ricardo told the Voice.
“We really feel we are building nicely this season and are very keen to go deep in finals.”
Chasing 189 for victory on day two, the Cobras rolled Barwon Heads for only 97 from 55.4 overs.
Collendina gun all-rounder Andy Higgins made a stunning return in his first A Grade appearance this season and finished with figures of 2/23 from 13 overs.
Experienced new ball bowlers Charlie Lamb, who claimed 3/38 from 20 overs, and Jye Hearps, who took 3/32 from 22.4 overs, helped guided their side to victory.
“Charlie (Lamb), Jye (Hearps), Higgo (Andy Higgins) were all brilliant and Higgins’ spell just before the tea break really turned the game in our favour,” Ricardo said.
On day one, Collendina made a stunning recovery from 4/37 thanks to a vital innings from Nathan Walter (72).
Walter and James Rock (40) shared in a crucial 105-run fifth-wicket partnership stand to leave the visitors in a competitive position midway through day one.
Tailender Lamb hit 25 late in the innings as the Cobras were all out for 188 from 72.4 overs.
“To end up with 188 after a poor start was really pleasing,” he said.
Collendina now faces a perfect test to prepare for A Grade finals with a two-day game against ladder leader Portarlington at Portarlington on Saturday 20 February to end its regular season.
A TIMELY half-century from Collendina B Grade opener Cameron Kavailiunas (61) was not enough for the Cobras to score victory in their two-day game at home against Barwon Heads.
Collendina, which won toss and batted first, was bowled out for 164 from 56.4 overs on day one....


Ocean Grove Voice: Ocean Grove nippers star at home "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"

THE 1000 plus state wide competitors on Saturday February 14 at Life Saving Club Junior State Carnival saw Ocean Grove SLSC nippers perform exceptionally well.
The Ocean Grove nippers won events in every single age group.
On Sunday 14 February, at the Western/Surf Coast regional event Ocean Grove SLSC performed well.
Surf Life Saving Clubs from Point Lonsdale to Warrnambool competed at the Sunday based event which is seen as qualifier for the 2016 Victorian Junior Championships.
Ocean Grove SLSC were aiming to qualify for every single event in each age group, and were pleased that the nippers had worked so hard.
From Under 9 to Under 14s, both boys and girls, have qualified for all the events at the state championships which will be held in Warrnambool in early March.
The Under 12 Ocean Grove SLSC girls were a major highlight and qualified in everything including two board relay teams.
All Under 12 girls qualified for individual board race, beach relay team, the swim team, three belt and reel teams where Ocean Grove came first, second and third.
The Ocean Grove Under 10 boys also did well and qualified for everything and will be hard to beat at the Lorne based State nipper carnival on Sunday 28 February.
Ocean Grove SLSC head coach, Sonia Kinsey said the Under 14 boys were great performers across the two days of competition.
“The Under 14 boys have grown another leg in the last couple of months,” Kinsey said.
“They have grown, they are more confident and they are not as nervous on the starting line.”
The Ocean Grove SLSC nippers, parents and coaching team are pleased with how well the club perfomed.

The post Ocean Grove nippers star at home appeared first on Ocean Grove Voice.


Zedlines: Calls for pill testing - and more 8am Zedlines: "IndyWatch Feed Seq"

Is pill testing the best way to help those who choose to take illegal party drugs? (Image Source: Flickr Creative Commons)

Bubbling tension in the Condamine River:

As a river bubbles in Queensland, landholders are calling on the State Government to find a cause.

The so-called methane seeps in the Condamine River were first reported in 2012, triggering a series of investigations, however the Government said there was insufficient information to identify a cause.

Landowners are growing increasingly worried as the bubbles are intensifying and many are pointing towards the Coal Seam Gas industry for answers.


Ocean Grove Voice: Combine team need win against Leopold "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"


THE Under 17 combined Ocean Grove/Colledina team make the journey to Leopold to take on Leopold Peel in this must win two day clash.
They are level on points with Leopold making a win here even more important. Leopold won the toss and elected to bat and they got off to a fine start.
The first wicket didn’t fall until the score was on 105 and Leopold were heading for a mammoth total. Quick wickets were needed and a reduction in the Peel run rate a must.
The combines spinners and part timers didn’t disappoint. The wicket were shared and the wickets began to fall at regular intervals.
Cody Richardson, Fletcher Long and Sam Walsh all took one wicket apiece.
Craig Goodger was economical with 2/9 off 6 overs and Sam Harper cleaned up the tail also with the figures of 2/9.
Riley Kohler was the chief wicket taker with an innings defining 3/20 off 6 overs. The run rate had been reigned in and the score kept to a more manageable 10/187 off 49.3 overs.
The combine team ended day one on 0/6 with Logan Taylor and Sam Walsh, who are both in good form, eager to lead the run chase on day two.
Sam Walsh and Logan Taylor opened the run chase for the combine.
These two are in red hot form and today this form would be needed to get these runs. They didn’t disappoint.
Taylor made another ton, it’s just what he does, and Walsh was again reliable with a well made 65.
Ronan Healy chipped in with 11 and Fletcher Long made 18. The total was reached with ease. 2/205 was the final score.
The combine team now sit in third with one game to go but a loss next game could see the footy boots come out early.
THE under 13s head into this round ten two day clash sitting third on percentage alongside Leopold.
They take on fifth placed Ocean Grove Grubbers at the Shell Road Recreation Reserve. A gap of twelve points has formed between the top and bottom four which is...


Ocean Grove Voice: Grubs juniors well placed for finals "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"

Compiled by Paul Madden

AS we come up to the end of the season leading into finals with one home-and-away round left, the juniors are well placed for finals appearances.
Both under-15 teams have continued with good wins and sees them consolidated top of the ladder and second respectively giving them both a home game semi-final. Similarly the under-13 Swans, after a big win, are now placed top of the ladder and a home final for them also.
Under 15 OG Red D’Arcy Division
OG Red won the toss and decided to bat first, scoring a respectable 9/206, with Charlie Walter and Flynn Hardiman both scoring 52 not out and supported by Taliesen Platt and Liam Mullen 28 and 24 respectively. Queenscliff were then sent in to have a hit but fell short scoring 126 with outstanding bowling by Nathan Scarpa taking 4/13 from his five overs and Brad Walder 2/9 from his three overs. A huge win for the boys which has cemented them in top spot and guaranteed them a home semi-final
Under 15 OG White McMahon Division
The OG White boys got up early to travel to Lara but it was worth it with the boys winning the toss and bowling first keeping Lara to a gettable 6/144 from 45 overs with Liam King 2/18 from six overs and Mitch Gawley Price 1/6 from five overs. Second week up early again to go and have a bat but the early morning rise had no effect on the boys as they piled on 4/232, with the reliable Louie Beale and Harry Tregenza 51 and 50 both retired, Will Owen getting 21 and Henry Walsh 16 retired. This was a must-win game and the boys consolidated their finals with second on the ladder
Under 13 OG Swans Norquay Division
OG Swans lost the toss and Drysdale decided to bat first scoring a respectable 5/125 from their 52 overs. The Ocean Grove boys then came out to bat and were switched right on from the start showing why they are top of the ladder making a huge 277. Nathan Down was unbeaten with 43 retired, supported by Hayden Ewart 31 retired a...


Ocean Grove Voice: Grove packed for state events "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"

MORE than 1000 state elite junior lifesavers collectively took part in two huge days of Life Saving Victoria nipper competitions held across the weekend at Ocean Grove beach on Saturday.
Hundreds of Ocean Grove SLSC nipper competitors were among the 1200 plus junior state wide participants in the LSV Junior State Carnival.
Local and state wide nippers backed up at the LSV Western/Surf Coast Victorian junior event on Sunday, which was a qualifier for the 2016 Victorian Junior Championships.
OGSLSC president Steve Peatling said it proved why Ocean Grove was chosen as a successful location to host for back-to-back days of competitions.
“That was shown by numbers that attended how popular Ocean Grove based carnivals are,” Peatling said.
“Location wise, Ocean Grove is a fantastic location it is pretty central location for everybody. For a junior carnival like this, Ocean Grove is still a reasonably safe beach, I think that has got a lot to do why this beach is so popular when we run a carnival.”
Up to 200 local club volunteers helped out both days across the weekend, while more than 150 Ocean Grove SLSC nippers participated in two days of competition.

The post Grove packed for state events appeared first on Ocean Grove Voice.


Ocean Grove Voice: Grubbers snap four-game losing streak "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"

THE Grubbers’ A Grade side snapped a four-game losing streak after a resounding 67-run win over Queenscliff.
Defending a competitive 194, Ocean Grove bowled out Queenscliff for 127.
Ocean Grove coach Paul Jubber, who took 3/14 from 10 overs, praised young fast bowling pair Lindon Guiffrida, who claimed 1/25 from 15 overs, and Rob Proctor.
Proctor who chimed in with 2/15 from eight overs, remained 21 not out with the bat on 6 February.
“Guiffrida and Proctor were outstanding with the new ball,” Jubber said. “We are delighted with the progress of our emerging players.”
The Coutas were in a comfortable position at 3/94, but lost their way and lost 7/33.
Despite Jubber conceding its focus is not playing finals in 2015/16 after Ocean Grove’s 3-0 start to season, he said it was important to nurture youth.
“To get games into our emerging players and for them to play is a positive and it is a bonus to win, which is a great result for the club,” Jubber said.
On day one, promising Grubber opener Jackson Kent (50) led the way with a half-century.
Kent is the leading Ocean Grove A Grade run scorer this season with his tally of 264 runs at 33, which included two half-centuries.
Ocean Grove batsman Issac Saunders is making the most of an A Grade promotion after his innings of 43, which included six boundaries and one six.
Queenscliff captain Tony Hanafin, who claimed 3/14 from nine overs, was his side’s most successful bowler on day one.
Ocean Grove, which has a 4-4 record after nine rounds, faces winless Wallington in a home two-day game on 20 February to wrap up the season.
IN B Grade, Ocean Grove almost pulled off an unlikely outright victory against Anglesea in their two-day game at Anglesea Recreation Reserve.
The Grubbers, who won the toss and batted first, declared at 4/309 from 58 overs on day one.
The Ocean Grove batting quartet of Rhys Sheather (78), Pat Kuipers (79), Corey Buxt...


Ocean Grove Voice: Grant win for sports "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"


BELLARINE MP Lisa Neville was at Shell Road Reserve last Friday to announce funding for new interchange benches and netting behind the goals.
“We worked with the clubs to find out what they wanted,” she told the Voice.
“Netting and the interchange benches were their first priority.”
Ms Neville said the Victorian Government made the $53,110 commitment after having already funded the ground’s new scoreboard.
“It’s just an added extra – to make sure this will be a state-of-the-art facility for decades to come,” she said.
Ms Neville joined councillor Jan Farrell, local sporting leaders and the Shell Road Pavilion Board of Management for the announcement.
Board president Phil Emery said the interchange boxes would take just days to build and will be ready for the start of the football season on 26 March.
“Nets are nice to have but coach’s boxes and interchange boxes are essential – you can’t play without them,” he said.
“If not for this funding games wouldn’t be able to proceed.”
He and board secretary Ian McTaggart agreed the facility was a “benchmark for Geelong”.
“We couldn’t have hoped for a better result for the dollars available,” Mr Emery said.
“They sought our input and our relationship with the council has been fantastic.”
Cr Farrell, who is the council’s Community Safety Portfolio holder, thanked the State Government for the funding.
“For me, stopping the balls from going out onto Shell Road is a great outcome,” she said.
The government funded the project through its $100 million Community Sports Infrastructure Fund.
Also at the announcement, were Surfside Waves Soccer Club president Andy Sattler and Ocean Grove director of netball Gill Hodgson.

The post Grant win for sports appeared first on...


Ocean Grove Voice: Club Grove gears up for bowls finals "IndyWatch Feed Geelong"

Compiled by Matt Flapper

Pennant finals approaching
WITH the finals just around the corner for both midweek and Saturday pennant competitions, the next two weeks will determine the fate for all sides concerned.
In the Saturday competition, all eight teams are still a chance to feature in the top four.
Premier Division and defending champions have worked their way back into contention with a run of great form thus far in 2016. Currently in fourth position they face off with Lara and City Of Geelong to finish the home-and-away season.
Division Two is the only team that heads its leader board in the Division while the 5s, 7s, 9s and 10s are all third after 16 rounds. Division Three sit fourth which is a fantastic effort so far considering it earned promotion from Division Four last year. Sitting seventh but only one game out of fourth place the Division Eight team will need to secure the points in the remaining two matches to have any chance of securing that fourth spot.
With four opportunities to play finals in the midweek competition, defending premier Division One is on track to feature prominently at the business end, as is Division Two having enjoyed a great start to the year. Four wins on the trot and momentum building, the Twos have worked their way into fourth spot.
Division Three continues to dominate its division – currently on top – while some terrific performances from some of our newer bowlers and inexperienced skippers in Division Seven have them a big chance sitting fourth.
The final two weeks of the season will tell the story, but to have 12 teams with an opportunity to reach the play-off stages is a remarkable effort to date.

Classic stars from City of Geelong
WITH the final result of the 2016 R.T. Edgar Men’s Classic Fours in the balance until the final bowl of the tournament it was the City of Geelong foursome skipped by Brendan Umbers that would rise to the top of the leade...


darkly wise, rudely great: Australia's pathological indifference to refugees' suffering "IndyWatch Feed Melbourne"

Drawing from a child imprisoned on Nauru
My most recent Canberra Times column is on Australia's treatment of asylum seekers.

In 'Australians' pathological indifference to refugees' suffering', I discuss the dubious ethics of our mandatory offshore detention regime. A sample:
Even if adult asylum seekers were guilty of serious legal or ethical transgressions – again, there is no evidence of this – this would be no argument for the punishment of children. Yet many Australians accept what amounts to institutional abuse. They might lament the situation, saying that it's a shame to imprison kids indefinitely; that alleged sexual assault of minors is a terrible thing; that it is hardly ideal these children are "among the most traumatised" Australian paediatricians have seen. But they still support the system itself, the efficacy of which is prefaced on suffering.
In this, my fellow citizens are supporting evils. They are vicious, in the original sense: demonstrating vices. 
These vices might include cruelty, understood as a pathological indifference to others' suffering. The medical qualifier is vital here, as human flourishing requir...



Jo Rittey has a soul-filling start to her day at Proud Mary's in Collingwood. Fat Freddy's Drop on the turntable, excellent coffee, and the feeling of goodness you get from being around people who love what they do.



the food eXchange radio show: 12 February 2016 food eXchange radio show "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

We talk Bush Foods & Herbs with Karen Sutherland from Edible Eden Design on episode 12/2/16 of the food eXchange radio show. Podcast avaiable at or on ‪#‎iTunes‬


Natural Newstead: Golden moments #1 "IndyWatch Feed Cvic"

Eastern Yellow Robins … dappled, golden morning light – a compelling combination.

These shots are of a pair seen in the Rise and Shine at the weekend. They are easily found in the alluvial drainage lines at any time of year.


Eastern Yellow Robin, Rise and Shine, 14th February 2016








07:24 Former FBI and National Security Intelligence officer warns WWIII is 18 days away "IndyWatch Feed Capricornia"

SuperStation95   95.1-FM    

New York, NY  USA

Russia has publicly warned Saudi Arabia, the US, and other countries, they risk “a new world war” if they act on plans to send troops into Syria. WW3: 18 days away.

A member of Russian State Duma (Parliament) publicly stated that “If any foreign troops enter Syria without permission from the Syrian government, Russia will consider that a declaration of war.”

 Russia issues warning to its citizens in Turkey: Leave right away

russian I am not certain if you are familiar with me, I am Hal Turner, a talk-radio host on WBCQ International Shortwave (7.490 MHz) and 95.1 FM in New York City, “SuperSta...

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Sunday, 14 February

18:25 Peter Spencer appeal hearing: before Federal Court Tuesday, February 16 "IndyWatch Feed Capricornia"

This is the last train out of Hopesville for property rights

Peter Spencer

Peter Spencer

Peter Spencer has been granted a hearing to his interlocutory application by the appeals unit before Justice Griffiths, Tuesday, 16 February 2016 at 9.30am in the Federal Court of Australia  NSW Division 184 Phillip Street, Sydney.

During this last week, Peter had an accident and has broken a leg. He is now in  a wheelchair and also suffered a stomach rupture needing urgent attention. None of this will not deter this man from his mission to redeem land rights for all Australians.

In an interview with Harry Palmer of SOS-NEWS, Peter Spencer stated, “this hearing is so vital – we are trying to open this can of worms and we need to fill the court on Tuesday to reflect solidarity of the people to this government theft of THEIR LAND.”

“Nineteen years ago when the first Native Vegetation Laws passed from a Bill to a Law the Liberals and Nationals said they would revoke the laws as soon as they got in to power – that is if the people voted them in… 19 years later it is still law  LIARS – nothing was done!

“But with National Parks, Valuer Generals Act variations and new “Abandonment” rules, our rural zoning is shattered…..Land owners right across the country are being forced to give up to a 3rd of their land free to councils for subdivision from Rule Zone conversions. ...


James O'Brien: Melodifestivalen 2016 #2 "IndyWatch Feed Sydney"

First, the good news:  there was only one song which I thought was absolutely bloody awful in the second heat of Melodifestivalen, the contest which chooses Sweden’s entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. Maybe it was too early on a Sunday morning for me, but 100% by Viktor och Natten did absolutely nothing for me. For me, it was rushed and confused. I couldn’t work out what exactly they were hoping to achieve with this song. Clearly, Sweden agreed with me, as the song was voted out.

Now, the bad news: there was nothing in the second heat which grabbed my attention. Sure, there were some pretty good songs. For example, I really liked “We Are Your Tomorrow” by David Lindgren (through to the final) and “Hunger” by Molly Petterson Hammar (through to the second chance final). Surprisingly, I also really liked “Håll mitt hjärta hårt”  by Patrik, Tommy and Uno. I say surprisingly, because I thought the idea of a bunch of mid 40s blokes who looked more like songwriters than performers, seemed a little weak, and would have little chance of making it through to represent Sweden at Eurovision, but the song and performance were pretty good. They didn’t make it through, though.

And I guess that’s my point about Melodifestivalen so far this year: there’s nothing so far which I think has “winner” stamped all over it. I’m sure there’ll be a song/performance which may be worthy of consideration, though. Fingers crossed.

At least they’re doing well with the presenters this year. Gina was great, and Charlotte was, well, Charlotte was Charlotte (and that’s a good thing). Mother and daughter?


Friday, 12 February


CounterAct: Getting in the way – to #LetThemStay "IndyWatch Feed Melbourne"

Our round up of resources, groups and training to get involved in, pathways to action and suggestions for affinity group organising to get in the way, to ‪#‎LetThemStay‬ 

It is an incredible time right now with significant movement momentum gathering around the call to #LetThemStay in relation to the 267 refugees at risk of being deported to Nauru and Manus Island after a recent high court case was unsuccessful in challenging offshore detention.

The response across Australia has been phenomenal – from all sectors of civil society, calling on a need for a moral response, rather than a legal one. Civil disobedience and non-cooperation has hit the mainstream with churches offering sanctuary, and other institutions such as trade hall, and individuals joining that offer as well. Teachers and healthcare workers have been speaking out in recent months, refusing to discharge children who could be deported, risking possible charges under the controversial Border Force act, and many thousands of everyday folks have hit the streets, brought cities to a standstill and expressed powerful support in taking further steps of direct action to “get in the way, to let them stay”....

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