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Heartbeat Bangalow’s

free l MARCH 2014 No.178 l Celebrating the Life and Times of the local Community

NOT THE MEN’S SHED See the Lions’ report on page 14 for exciting shed news ... and more.

editorial Welcome to the first of our autumn issues, though it certainly still feels like summer as we prepare this issue for publication. I would like to thank those readers who have already sent in their Heartbeat reader surveys. For those who haven’t, you have till the end of March to be in the running for the prize. You have lots to read, as usual, in

this issue. There are reports on people, clubs and societies, the environment (note the launch date for the Bangalow Parklands), books, exhibitions, gardening, wildlife and health. Oh yes, and film, theatre and sport. And ... Our cover points you to the Lions’ report on improvements, now approved, which they have been working on for our town. Di Martin

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The Eastern Rosella (Platycercus eximius) is one of the most brilliantly coloured of the parrot family with its plumage of bright red, yellow, green and blue. It also has distinctive white cheek patches and long tail feathers. Eastern Rosellas prefer a habitat of open forest or cleared land and are commonly seen in this area. They are quite at home in many gardens where they will often feed on grass seeds or seeds and blossoms from various trees and shrubs. They are especially fond of eucalypts and acacias and will also eat insects and their larvae. The breeding season usually lasts from August to January and at this time breeding pairs who mate for life will begin to look for hollow limbs or even holes in stumps or fence posts where they can nest. Four or five eggs are laid on a layer of decayed wood dust. Eastern Rosellas can be encouraged into your garden if you attach a hollow log to one of your larger trees. A piece of wood at the base of the log and timber or metal on top provides a nest where they will stay dry in wet weather. Obviously a hole has to be made for entry. Breeding pairs always return to the same nest and ours have been returning for about the last 10 years. Lyn Plummer

bangalow’s heartbeat PO Box 132 Bangalow NSW 2479 Editors: Dianne Martin 6687 2592 Ruth Kirby Email: editors@heartbeat. Cover: Benny Saunders Advertising: Janelle Saun-

ders 0422 069 861 Ad Production:Allie Leo Design:Alison Parr Editorial team: Judy Baker, Don Brown,Marika Bryant, Sophie Clare,Helen Johnston, Tony Hart,Robin Osborne, Lyn Plummer, Sally Schofield, Andrea Sturgeon,Brian

Sundstrom Distribution: Bangalow P.O., Brian Sundstrom, Peter Bradridge, Neil McKenzie Website: Joanna Wilkinson Accounts: Rob Campbell Chairman: Neville Maloney

DISCLAIMER.This newsletter is published by Bangalow’s Heartbeat Incorporated PO Box 132 NSW 2479. Hon. Editors Dianne Martin, Ruth Kirby, Hon Sec/Public Officer Neville Maloney. Membership is open to all adult residents of the 2479 postal district. The opinions expressed by individual contributors are not necessarily shared by the Editors and other members of the Association committee.While every reasonable effort is made to publish accurate information, Bangalow’s Heartbeat Inc. accepts no responsibility for statements made or opinions expressed.


local news

Event to launch ‘Bangalow Parklands’ Community Funding Sunday, March 23. Please mark this date in your calendars. That afternoon, from 3pm, Bangalow journalist and facilitator extraordinaire, Mick O’Regan, will be facilitating a panel discussion to highlight the merits and evolution of the area that will become known as ‘The Creek: Bangalow Parklands’. The innovative event is being held specifically to launch a community funding program to augment monies becoming available from a variety of sources to complete necessary repairs for the weir and to revitalise the parkland. The dream is to recreate a beautiful, natural public space allowing for free community activities that everyone, from babies to the aged, will enjoy. Think picnics, musical events, weddings, nature walks, paddling in the creek, a dog walker’s paradise… Among the line-up of people interviewed will be local identities representing the various users of the parkland on the corner of Deacon and Ashton Streets. Lynn Smith, whose father Bruce Beckinsale, taught hundreds of children to swim in the old creek pool, will provide insider knowledge on past activities. Chris Taylor, the Bangalow engineer who designed a cheaper solution to repair the cracked weir wall, will discuss his innovative design. Brookfarm’s Martin Brook will offer the businessman’s perspective on the wider value of community endeavours such as this. Byron Mayor, Cr Simon Richardson, will say how Council is able to help. All this – and more - will happen in the recognised ‘In Conversation’ format successfully

evolved at Heritage House events by Mick O‘Regan. Last November, the Bangalow Historical Society submitted a Development Application to Byron Shire Council. The DA must be processed before any works can begin, and Council is currently waiting for feedback from departments such as the DPI. The Historicals did not receive government funding through the Community Partnerships program, but not through lack of merit. They were told by MP Don Page’s office that their application was for too large an amount, and that the department preferred to spread their donations to a number of smaller projects. Undaunted, the group once referred to as the Weir Group, now known as Bangalow Parklands Team, has since been working tirelessly behind the scenes to track down alternate funding sources. In January, the team met with the Mayor and Council staff and established a cooperative working relationship to explore alternate funding options, including, hopefully, some Council funding. In February, they met with a multinational group which is committing to provide materials and services to the project. Details to be announced next month.

Finally, in the historical get-up-and-go spirit of Bangalow, it was decided to open the doors to a community funding program as well, so that any member of the Bangalow community, regardless of how deep or how shallow their pockets, can also ‘Buy a Bit of Bangalow’. Contributions for amounts from as small as $5 will be accepted at Bangalow Historical Society, and earmarked to go towards improvement of the entire Parklands area. A Masterplan devised by environmental scientist David Pont, includes a bandstand, improvements to the existing facilities, more trees and new park benches, as well as essential repairs to the antique creek weir wall to bring it up to contemporary standards. Once a donation has been made, individuals will receive a badge of honour in confirmation. So bring a picnic, or book a seat for the afternoon tea available at Heritage House, and come along and become a ‘Friend of Bangalow Parklands’. Anyone with a soft spot for the creekside park area will be made most welcome. Every tiny contribution will help bring new life to our Bangalow Parklands Christobel Munson

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local news

HERITAGE HOUSE MUSEUM ANZAC EXHIBIT 2014: Entertaining the Troops during War Time. One of the most eagerly anticipated exhibitions at the Museum is the annual Anzac display. This year we are looking at the way our troops were entertained while on duty. A key element in the success or failure of any military endeavour is maintaining the morale of the troops. During the First World War it was realised that an important ingredient was having a wide range of recreational options available for the soldier on rest (approximately three-fifths of a soldier’s overseas service was spent in the rear of the lines). Faced with the grim reality of conflict, troops sought entertainment as a form of escape in order to survive mentally and continue functioning effectively. As a result of this Great War experience the Second World War saw an even greater emphasis placed on recreation and entertainment Many of the entertainments available to service personnel were intended to remind them of home and normal civilian pursuits such as dances, parties, dinners, clubs and the availability of familiar food and drinks. In this way troops made a connection with the home front and were reminded of what they were fighting for.

Sightseeing was also a popular form of entertainment and provided the troops with the opportunity to visit places that they may otherwise Pattie McGrath (Newton) Nui Dat October 1967 have never seen. These activities included tours of the Holy of magazine publications, Pin-Up girls, Land, sightseeing in cities such as London, visiting international entertainers, war art, Paris, Rome and Cairo, and admission photography and literature. The Vietnam to the cricket at Lords or to the State war period was a time when there was a concerted effort by governments to Apartments at Windsor Castle. Australians are widely regarded, by provide a wide range of contemporary others and themselves, as a sports-loving international and Australian entertainers, nation with a larrikin sense of humour and movie screenings, art, photography and the ability to have a good time and not be at literature. In present-day theatres of war all afraid to thumb their noses at authority. there is a lot more contact with family Nowhere is this more apparent than in the through technology, plus a generous actions of our front-line troops, soldiers smattering of entertainers and concerts. A great deal has changed since 1914 or nurses – whether in the trenches, as prisoners of war or on leave. What and the ‘Great War’, in terms of methods distinguished them, from our first real test of fighting and the conditions soldiers as a fighting nation in WWI, was the way have to cope with, but a common thread they kept themselves amused, entertained throughout is the absolute need for some happy relief from the dark horrors they and distracted from the reality of war. As different conflicts have arisen face on the battle field. This exhibition – over time, the entertainment has also from Friday, 21 March to Saturday, 31 May changed. WW2 saw the introduction - shines a light on how that was provided. Wendy Grissell

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OPEN CHURCH On Friday 14 February, Fr Matthew and I went for a stroll up Byron Street to see what response locals have to the doors of All Souls’ Anglican Church being open as an invitation to come inside. What a surprise for us! Greg Clark, Hudson Accounting Services, has his front door open during business hours indicating to people he wants business— All Souls’ welcomes all people—business for us of a different kind perhaps? Nicole Swain, Licensee at the Post Office, said that a church with closed doors “seems totally closed and not so welcoming.” Katrina from Town Cafe says, “It is a beautiful idea.” Then we suggested due to the nature of her business, a 15 minute respite in the peace of All Souls’ to light a candle and have a glass of water would soothe the heart and support the spirit during her busy day. For Carolyn at Windhorse Gallery the open doors signified our need to be involved in the community. She has discussed it with her daughter. Fr Matthew is young, has great rapport with young people, and would certainly be able to help young people with the trials they face at times. At the Newsagent, Richard was quick to respond, in his short and sweet words “I’ve seen that! the sign makes you accessible.” Another business person commented, “If our doors are not open no one will know that we are there.” Ruth at Bare Bones Gallery has noticed

Planning for future water security

the doors of the church are open—she would go and light a candle in God’s house—Ruth describes herself as a spiritual woman. Lyneve, Mi Casa Tu Casa, asked, “Aren’t church doors open to be able to go in and say a prayer, perhaps at lunchtime, and to be at peace?” Ben at Summerland Credit Union did not notice the doors being open but says he would feel as though he would like to walk in…

When Fr Matthew first arrived in Bangalow he discovered part of his duty as the incumbent is to ensure that the church is opened daily for the private devotions of any person, and so set about having the sign “Church Open for Prayer” made. Open doors alone do not really communicate the intention for people to go inside. All Souls’ has the support of local police, with Snr Cnst Peta Dickson saying, “I welcome it” and endorsing our risk to be present and inviting to the local community. Ellen Lehane

Have your say

To maintain a sustainable water supply for the region, Rous Water has developed a draft Future Water Strategy. Rous Water proposes three key actions to ensure future water security:

Key action 1 Water efficiency

Key action 2 Groundwater

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Implement water efficiency programs to ensure existing water sources are used responsibly and efficiently.

Undertake detailed investigation to assess the suitability of increased use of groundwater as a new water source.

Undertake detailed investigation and consultation to assess the suitability of water re-use as an additional new water source.

To view the strategy and complete the online survey, visit: Call 1800 159 882 or email for more information. Feedback closes Friday 11 April.



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community noticeboard The Bowlo Saturday, 1 March A Tribute to Paul Kelly A cracking six piece band distils the enormous volume of Paul Kelly’s 350 songs into a two hour show. Doors: 7.30 pm Door Tix: $18 Presale Tix: $15 (+bf) Sunday, 2 March An Afternoon of Letters hosted by Australian actor, Steve Bisley Ten local men and women read letters they have written to their mum or dad, with string quartet and high tea. Doors: 3pm Door Tix: $25 Presale Tix: $20 (+bf) Saturday, 8 March LaSalsa’s crew and latin DJ Roberto. Doors: 7pm with a fun introductory class. Door Tix: $15 Friday, 14 March Ajna Tattoo Art Exhibition with live music from Kevin Mark Trail World class art and music fusion hosted by Claire Reid and Jacob Gwynn of Ajna Tattoo. 12 well known and up and coming local artists will be displaying and selling their work along with projections and live music from Kevin, a singer songwriter and producer from London. Doors: 6.30pm Art Exhibition Music: 8pm Door Tix: $10 Saturday, 22 March Bangalow P & C Trivia Night Friday, 28 March The fabulous Rory McLeod is a truly unique modern gypsy and travelling troubadour weaving his Cockney spruik into highly rhythmic Latin/ Reggae/ Blues

inspired music. Doors: 7.30 pm Show: 8.00 pm Presale Tix: $18 (+bf) Door: $23 Check our weekly Tai Chi and Dance Classes Kat Antram

ADFAS Join ADFAS members on Monday, 3 March for The History of the Harp from Mediterranean antiquity to twentieth century Europe. Using illustrations from a multitude of sources, this presentation by Sarah DeereJones traces the history of one of the world’s most ancient and beloved musical instruments, from thousands of years ago to its arrival in northern Europe. It looks at the developments during the Renaissance and 19th century that created the highly- mechanised, beautiful instrument we know today. Hans Mol

High tea

I will be hosting ‘High Tea’ at the Bangalow Historical Museum and Tea Rooms on the 1st and Museum and tea rooms 3rd Sunday of each month. Great news for all our My contact is 0402 134 390. customers, take a note of this Satisha Young date: Saturday, 8 March. It is when we first open for Saturday Black and White Ball A Black and White Ball will be breakfasts. That’s right, in held on Saturday, 8 March in response to many requests the the Mullumbimby High School Tea Rooms will now be open Auditorium to raise money to every Saturday from 7.30am support scientists researching until 3.30pm serving delicious cancer. Joan Towers food and snacks and great coffee. All in the beautiful and Ethics teacher needed Bangalow Public School has calming surrounds of Heritage places available for volunteer House and the creek gardens.

The Gilded Cage, the Peoples’ Choice Award at 2013 European Film Awards, will be screened on Saturday, 15 March at 7.45pm in Newrybar hall. It is a Portuguese / French production with subtitles by actor/director Ruben Alves. Set in Paris this is an enormously charming semi autobiography about a loving hardworking couple with a long held dream to return to their homeland which is undermined by overly dependent friends and neighbours. Come at 7.45 pm as the movie begins at 8 pm. We break for 30 minutes at 8.45 for supper and then return to the movie concluding about 10 pm. A byo evening. Tickets $25/head, on sale at Driftlab in Newrybar, Barebones in Bangalow and Lennox Bookmark in Lennox. Also by direct payment to Newrybar Hall BSB 032591 Account 326390

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Make it your special Saturday morning treat! And for our many Museum fans, we are mounting a fabulous Anzac exhibition from Friday, 21 March to Saturday, 31 May. To celebrate this we are having a razzle dazzle cocktail party opening, with entertainment, on Wednesday, 26 March, 5.30pm-7.30pm. Cost is $15 per person or $10 for members. All welcome. Wendy Grissell and Trisha Bleakley

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and put name for identification. having great adventures around Information from www. Somerset and Cornwall and / have been to Bournemouth as well. A fund raiser for the hall in I am well but missing the sun partnership with Travelling and finding it hard to adjust Flicks – info@travellingflicks. to being by myself. It has been com almost a year now since Chris Ian Duncan passed away. It doesn’t seem possible so much has happened Op shop Our $5 bag or half price each in that short time but I must single item of clothing sale is on continue. With help and love I once again starting Monday, 17 will make a new and happy life back here. March for three weeks. We will be closed on Saturday, Please feel free to forward this 5 April to enable us to change email: thelittleartshop@gmail. to our winter stock. Many com to whoever you think thanks to our loyal donors and would like to hear my news and customers for their continued I would love to hear from folk support. As we are banned from down under. selling baby bassinets, cots, car Georgie Ward Ruth Kirby seats, mattresses, roller blades etc. bike helmets and stuffed toys, we would appreciate if same were not left at the Op Shop. Many thanks.  Jan Shultz

Letter excerpt from Georgie in UK I fear I will never be brown again and now on top of all the floods, which are awful, there is snow falling as I type. I am, however, safe and snug in a little thatched cottage in the next village to mum. It is heaven. The village is called Alcombe and has a great pub which is fun. All the locals have welcomed me and gave me great support over Christmas. I also have a lovely old Type 3 VW variant called Frankie, a very faithful friend, and we are



Carers in and around Bangalow are needed to contribute to a study of carers’ mental health and well being. The research is being conducted by staff of School of Rural Medicine, at the University of New England in Armidale. Local carers do not have the same access to services as people in cities, so this study will help inform policy makers about local challenges. The study aims to give a voice to some hard-working, and often silent, Australians. Participants are asked to complete a confidential survey, which is simple and takes just 30 minutes to complete, online or on paper. People who complete

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the survey will receive a $5 gift voucher. Complete the survey at www. carers_study/ For more information, ring 02 6773 3418 or email pryan9@une. Peta Ryan

Poultry club The club is meeting for the new year and new poultry season beginning with the usual poultry auction being organised for Sunday, 20 April (Easter Sunday) at the poultry pavilion and Moller pavilion. These auctions are always a lot of fun for all the family and we can accommodate almost any bird the buyer wishes to purchase. A well run BBQ will operate from breakfast through to the end so there will be plenty for all. Also the Annual Poultry Exhibition is held on Saturday, 31 May where four judges will be hard at work selecting the best birds out of about 1000. It is a huge task and a lot of fun. The public is welcome to come, free of charge, and watch some of the finest birds from NSW and QLD vie for the big prizes under some of the finest judges also from NSW and QLD.  Glenda McKenzie

Changes at Women’s Health Women’s Health and Well Being welcomes Imelda Johnson back after an eight week absence and wishes Julie Streckfuss and

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Bimbi Gray all the best as they leave to establish their new premises in Bangalow. In 2014 Dr Jane Reffell (women’s health doctor), Janelle Angel (continence and pelvic floor physiotherapist), Imelda Johnson (remedial massage and myoarticular therapy) and Janella Purcell (naturopath and nutritionist) continue to offer appointments at Women’s Health and Well Being and hope to see you soon. Jane Reffell

School zones and parking regulations Parents, guardians and people dropping off and picking up children from school are being asked to stop only in designated school pickup areas and abide by the signage. Byron Shire Council’s senior ranger Gerry Burnage said, “Just recently the NSW Ambulance Service reported that in the first month of Term 1 in 2013, paramedics were called to treat at least 26 children who had been hit by vehicles in the hours before and after school. In Byron Shire we do have several schools where dropping off and collecting children can prove a challenge. Of particular concern are Byron Bay and Bangalow Primary Schools. Unfortunately, some people feel they have a right to disregard the signs and regulations. This is about the safety of children and a penalty of up to $405 and two demerit points can apply.” BSC PR

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local legends

Farewell Marge Buckley 1916-2014 The celebration of the life of Marge Buckley at St Kevin’s Church was a wonderful tribute to this charming woman. She was a lively, cheerful, friendly person for all of her 97 years. A poem composed for Marge’s 90th birthday suggested she should be heritage listed. She was presented with a certificate declaring her a Bangalow Living Treasure on Australia Day in 2007 so it seemed

a fitting conclusion to her life to die on Australia Day. On her last birthday Marge travelled down the main street in a 1928 Dodge waving to the crowds. It was appropriate that family mourners travelled in the same car on the journey to the Bangalow Cemetery. An incident soon after Marge’s birth in 1916 was the stimulus for the Buckley family to buy a car, one of the early cars in Bangalow. The wheel of the sulky carrying the family went off the edge of the creek crossing and there was a danger of them ending up in the water, new baby and all. Marge’s father declared, “That does it. We’re buying a car.” Marge lived at the Buckley farm at Federal for her first two years then at Glenbrook close to Bangalow for 74 years. She described her parents James and Eliza as the best in the world. She was the middle of the family of Joe, Mary (Sister Angela) Winnie and Brian. She enjoyed a happy childhood at the farm with holidays at Brunswick Heads and life centred on a large extended family. She started school as a boarder in Mullumbimby but later walked into Bangalow with her sisters to attend the Bangalow Convent School. After leaving school she and her sister Win farmed at Glenbrook and Marge did dressmaking at the house for many locals. In 1995 Marge became the first occupant of the MacKillop Place units near St Kevin’s Church. She was the person who suggested the name MacKillop after the founder of the order of the Josephite Sisters. The hospitality of life at Glenbrook moved into town. At aged 69 Marge took up bridge and

entered a whole new chapter of her life. She played all over the district and travelled far and wide to bridge congresses. The game was a source of many new friendships and she often had learners come to her home to build up their confidence and much fun was had by all. She had a long association with the Byron Bay Bridge Club of which she was a Life Member. In her last weeks in care her friends visited and enjoyed a game with her. Marge was a valuable source of local and family history. She was a great listener, had an excellent memory and was an entertaining story teller. May this woman of great faith and good humour rest in peace. Helen Johnston in collaboration with Chris Dunne

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in the garden

Part I: Soil Biodiversity For the series of articles on biodiversity I thought I‘d start with what is, after all, the basis of garden life, the soil. We all know that through the soil plants have access to nutrients. What is much too often overlooked is the role of the microbial communities in nutrient and carbon cycling, and the relationships these micro-organisms have with themselves and the plants, both below and above ground. This is often referred to as soil food webs. Studies done in Europe are showing that there is an important correlation between soil organisms and the workings of ecosystems. To simplify, I will describe the action of four of the major players of soil organisms. Bacteria: They are responsible for the largest chemical soil transformation of any group of organisms and underpin soil health. Eukaryotes: They fix carbon and break down complex organic matter. They also affect the physical nature of the soil ecosystem. Invertebrates: They are soil engineers. They provide the soil with access to water and air, providing the two ingredients necessary to biogeochemical reactions. They do this by burrowing, drilling, mixing

and processing the soil. Some harvest organic matter and build compost heaps in their nests and burrows, inoculating them with fungi to break down plant matter. Insects and spiders: By drilling in the soil to create nests and burrows they increase the chances for water infiltration into the plants root zones, slow down water runoff and reduce soil mineral loss, mostly nitrogen.

How to preserve and increase soil biodiversity? Keep soil disturbance to the minimum. In gardens as in agriculture, excessive tillage degrades the soil organisms’ environment. Avoid the use of herbicides and pesticides. Control your fertilizer use. To have healthy soil biology it is important to understand the importance of the Carbon/ Nitrogen (C/N) balance. The efficiency of fertiliser use will be high where the organic matter content of the soil is also high. Plant diversity has a beneficial effect on soil food webs. Although this is not yet fully understood it seems that the relationship of root biomass and soil biodiversity is of the upmost importance.

Mulching protects and keeps the top soil from drying out. This is beneficial to soil micro organisms. If your soil is low in worms and other invertebrates I would recommend using barley or soy bean mulch as the results are simply stunning. Advantages of a healthy soil include: retention of nutrients due to reduction in leaching; easy availability of nutrients to plants; development of a deep root system that will reduce water and fertiliser use and increase plant growth and decrease risk of disease. Soil biodiversity is very important and affects not only plants but the ability of soils to regulate the flow and storage of water, maintenance of the soil structure, and reduction of pests and diseases. The soil bacteria play a vital role in detoxification of pollutants and regulation of our planet’s atmospheric composition. To give a perspective, soil is estimated to contain one quarter to one third of all living organisms on planet Earth. For further reading go on www.facebook. com/Interactive.landscapes where I have posted my reference sources Patrick Regnault Registered Horticulturist MAIH

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the person behind the job

Just Steve? Naturally.

Steve grew up on the Northern Beaches of Sydney where his mum and dad were both school teachers. From his earliest memories and on through his formative years his parents’ enthusiasm for the natural world was a strong influence. There is still a large national park close by, some magnificent coastal scenery and the chain of beaches. Small wonder then that Steve was raised to be an environmentalist. Completing his secondary schooling at Cromer High, he commenced study of Environmental Science at Macquarie University but left after two years when the travel bug had a hold on him. He spent time wandering in Asia and Europe and was particularly impressed with Italy and Nepal. He began working in the hospitality industry and has remained in that line of work throughout his working life. Customer relations are Steve’s speciality and he loves meeting and getting to know new people and extending his network. He has worked in some very well known restaurants such as Jonah’s at Whale Beach and Otto in Wooloomooloo and got to know many celebrity guests while in Sydney. He also lived for some time in Parramatta

before coming to the Northern Rivers four and a half years ago. Steve lives with his wife, Yvonne, in a rented farmhouse in Tyagarah. She is also a trained teacher who now takes classes in yoga at the Surf Club. “There’s plenty of space around us and the air is clean and fresh up here. There are four important words for me,” he explains, “Get back to nature.” From early in his life Steve was encouraged to question what he was told, and, in particular, to recognise the role played by the media and the giant corporations to establish a single paradigm; one that suits their particular lifestyle and financial interest. He is not very fond of the political system and is horrified by the diet that is creating a sick society. He is also sceptical of the over reliance on massive amounts of pharmaceuticals to correct dietary problems. He maintains his fitness level by taking time to exercise and finds his meat, dairy and sugar free diet both satisfying and naturally healthy. He and his wife are both actively promoting their healthy life style at the Gold Coast markets, where they sell essential oils. This is something that they have developed into a cottage industry and they are finding an expanding market to supply in this region. When Steve eventually decides that he’s had enough of the hospitality industry they will make the oils their main source of income. Like many people these days Steve is critical of the political system. In particular he sees the power of the great corporations as a worry. “I reckon the last decent politician we had was Ben Chifley,” he complains. He is critical of health policies that various governments have followed and the failure

to come to grips with our destruction of habitats and the corruption of food production. The pollies have presided over a badly managed distribution of the world’s resources with the top 85 wealthy families having more wealth than the bottom third of the world’s population put together. Steve is a keen reader , and enjoys a wide range of reading material, but he avoids the mass circulation newspapers. His father was involved in the aboriginal community and Steve has learned from him to respect their culture of sustainability. “Our culture is ignorant and arrogant in its dealing with the aboriginal people. We have much to learn from them and their relationship with the land,” he says with strong conviction. When he was younger Steve liked music of many different kinds. He was a trumpet player and he enjoyed listening to the great jazz musicians, especially the virtuoso, Dizzy Gillespie In line with their enjoyment of natural things, Steve and Yvonne enjoy bushwalking. This is one of the great attractions of the Northern Rivers where the national parks are only a comparatively short drive away. This access to nature is accompanied by a large population of creative people open to new ideas. “I like it here. I look back at years spent in urban environments and I’m glad that I’ve left the urban world behind,” Steve explains. For the future, Steve will continue to be one of the friendly faces of the Utopia cafe restaurant. He likes people and enjoys sharing their lives and interests. He will be extending his knowledge of the essential oils, and he will continue to put a lot of energy into his campaign to promote healthy nutrition. He will continue to look young and healthy and to give his strongly held opinions an airing whenever he can. And will he continue to be just Steve? Of course he will. Naturally. Don Brown

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stage and screen

Bangalow Holiday Theatre Workshop Light and Shadow

A four-day Theatre Workshop for children in years three to six is being held at the Bangalow Scout Hall in the first week of the Easter school holidays from Monday, 14 April to Thursday, 17 April 2014. The workshop will be from 9am until 3pm and will be run by Australia’s first Theatre Pedagogy teacher, Frauke Huhn. Everybody can play theatre. Acting is ‘pretend as if...’ You can jump in and out

of your role as you please - try yourself out! Being part of a theatre project is an enriching experience and has benefits for personal, social and aesthetic development. In four full days of action, children learn how a theatre performance comes into life. The children will be actors, designers, technicians, musicians and dancers. They will learn about the art of acting, storytelling, movement and voice. “During the workshop we take care of and interact with each other. We let the creativity unfold and strengthen the selfconfidence and trust in our talents,” says Frauke. There will be a performance by the children on the last day of the workshop. Contact Frauke at or call 6687 1081 for details and booking. Andrea Sturgeon

Screenworks Regional Screen Enterprise Program  The launch at Heritage House in Bangalow on Tuesday, February 11 highlighted the pivotal role that Screenworks plays as the gateway for TV, film and digital media in the Northern Rivers of NSW. Screenworks has been building the screen industry of NSW for around 14 years and the professional development program planned for this year will continue to do so.   Some of the highlights for this year’s program include bringing key screen industry representatives from major production companies to the region;

Lismore Mayor Jenny Dowell and Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson at the launch

a pitching clinic; a Screen composing workshop with Guy Gross; a seminar on Opportunities in Asia to be held at the Byron Bay Film Festival and a seminar with representatives from the major Australian broadcasters. “The program is designed to build the industry knowledge and the skills required by our screen producers and to create opportunities to develop more screen industry jobs and productions in television, digital media and film in the region”, explained Screenworks general manager Jill Moonie.   Screenworks Regional Screen Enterprise Program was launched by Lismore Mayor Jenny Dowell, Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson, Screenworks Chairperson and producer Lois Randall and writer producer Deb Cox.  For more information on Screenworks Regional Screen Enterprise program visit Lisa O’Meara

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CAWI provides care and finds homes for unwanted or surrendered animals. We rehabilitate orphaned or sick animals and promote responsible pet ownership. CAWI is run by volunteers and is now raising money to build a BYRON ANIMAL ADOPTION CENTRE. Our main source of income is from our Op Shop and we are always in need of household goods and furniture to sell.

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Film Festival Headquarters Buzzing in Bangalow

Full moon over sunset cinema at BBFF2012 Credit Johnny Abegg

In an unassuming residential house in Bangalow a core crew is squeezed around the dining table in the living room. Heads are down and laptop keys are clicking. Preparations are in full swing for the 8th Byron Bay International Film Festival (BBFF 2014). This is the home of Festival Director, J’aimee Skippon-Volke and Festival Technology and Art Director, Osveldo Alfaro. They choose to co-ordinate the Festival from their home as it makes more economical sense to do so and as J’aimee stated, “It is the way of the future.” It also means they get to spend more time with their three children: Indigo (aged 10), Lola (aged 13) and Malakai (aged 18). J’aimee said, “We picked Bangalow because it’s in the middle of the shire.” Every year about 50 volunteers assist J’aimee with BBFF preparation and operation. Living and working from her

home in Bangalow was a strategic choice to cater for more equal traveling distances for the team of volunteers. Moving to Bangalow also provided consistency for their children while attending Bangalow Public School. Bangalow local Will Gammon, director of the movie special effects company CumulusVFX, is on the BBFF 2014 judging panel. Will also runs his business from home and J’aimee shares his frustration with Internet speeds in the region. “We are being really damaged by not having access to high speed broadband. Country businesses like ours suffer from lack of technology. We could be working a lot faster and more efficiently if we were supported by the proper Internet network”, said J’aimee. Despite Internet speed challenges, J’aimee and her crew have managed to put together a great Festival line up this year. “We have hundreds of phenomenal films to look forward to, spanning topics such as social justice, women’s issues, sexuality and relationships, spirituality, surfing and the changing environment, many of which you will only be likely to catch in Australia at BBFF. The hardest thing is narrowing down your must-see list.” According to J’aimee, “It’s a really great event for coming and mingling with people. We screen the film and then afterwards it’s

a party. It’s a real opportunity for people to connect. Making new friends is a ‘Key Performance Indicator’ for us.” “Every year a theme naturally emerges in the programming and 2014’s is all about being comfortable with who you are and your place in the world.” “As an independent festival, we’re proud to walk to the beat of our own drum. We accept no funding from mining, that’s part of the reason Josh Fox selected us as the festival for his Australian premiere of Gasland Part II. This is a huge honour and being anti-fracking, something close to our hearts in Byron Bay.” The 8th Byron Bay International Film Festival takes place 28 February to 9 March across five venues in Byron Bay and surrounding areas. For further information visit Andrea Sturgeon

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health and wellbeing

Introducing a new Bangalow health facility In February, the doors opened to a new local health facility: Bangalow Health Care, operated by osteopath Julie Streckfuss and business partner, osteopath and naturopath Bimbi Gray. Both have been working in Bangalow for a number of years at Women’s Health and Wellbeing and had reached the point where their long waiting lists told them there was a need to expand the number of days they were able to see clients. To do this, they have relocated to a beautiful, carefully-restored timber building at 18 Granuaille Road. “We want to be visible in the community,” Julie said. “We didn’t want to be hard to find”. The house is surrounded by a lush garden, and from the moment you step inside the high wooden fence fringed with Bangalow palms, and pass through the shady verandah, the environment exudes a restful feeling of peace and calm – perfect for these larger premises, which allows the pair to be able to provide a practice to include all members of a family (including boys and men.) “Not only did we want to meet the demands of our local community, we both felt we wanted to give osteopathy

more of a focus,” Julie explained. For those not familiar with osteopathy, it’s a form of manual healthcare which recognises the important link between the structure of the body, and the way it functions. “Osteopaths focus on how the skeleton, joints, muscles, nerves, circulation, connective tissue and internal organs function as a holistic unit, and the body’s ability to heal itself,” she added. Treatment uses non-invasive techniques. Osteopathy is covered by most private health funds and the Chronic Disease Management scheme. Both women, who trained at Australian universities, are primary healthcare practitioners, and registered providers for workers’ compensation schemes, motor accident insurers and the Department of Veterans’ Affairs. The two have a long working association, having taught together for Southern Cross University’s Masters of Osteopathic Medicine program, as well

as sharing a work space at the Wellbeing Centre. They also “get the overflow” of clients from the referral program of Southern Cross University’s health clinic, being well able to handle more difficult cases. The three consulting rooms will offer the services of half a dozen skills. Apart from Julie and Bimbi, there are two psychotherapists, Julie Wells and Ann Mannix, offering body-based psychotherapy; a remedial massage therapist, Kristin Zanotti, who’s also a naturopath; and at the end of the month they will be joined by a breathing coach and rehabilitation consultant, Colin Clayton, who is moving up from Sydney to join the practice. Christobel Munson

Bangalow Lions Men’s Shed Update Byron Shire Council has formally approved a DA to construct a Men’s Shed in Bangalow. It was originally proposed to build it in the showgrounds but that was later changed. The Catholic Church has made a great community contribution by providing land for the project in the centre of Bangalow behind the Post Office. In addition to the Men’s Shed there is allocation (all approved) for a further 26 much needed car parking spaces. The Shed will be a reasonable size of 24 metres x 8 metres and will have a workshop, storage area, meeting room and kitchen facilities. Men’s Sheds have, as their primary objective, the health and well being of their members. They also provide a safe


and friendly environment where men feel they belong and are able to work on a large range of meaningful projects. Most men are reluctant to talk of their emotions, and that means they usually don’t ask for help. Probably because of this men are generally less healthy than women. They suffer more from isolation, loneliness and depression. Relationship breakdown, retrenchment or early retirement from a job, loss of children following divorce; these are just some of the problems men find hard to deal with on their own. Consequently, the ‘ Men’s Shed Organisation ’ is growing really well, and now has hundreds of Sheds throughout Australia. Many thanks to the people who have

got this project to where it is: Diocese of the Catholic Church for providing the land; Dominic Finlay Jones, the local architect who has done the design; Byron Shire Council, for efficient processing of the application; Baulderstones who are helping with the land clearing and earthworks ( a fantastic community gesture ); and our sponsor B & T Sheds Goonellabah ( part of Fair Dinkum Sheds). If you can help in any way or want more information contact Richard Rombouts at the Newsagency , carrhouse06@bigpond. or Rick Heinemann 6687 8106 or myself 6688 4236 Tony Heeson


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health and wellbeing

Healthy pets and happy wildlife The warmer weather we experience at this time of year generally means we (and our pets) are increasingly active outside. This weather also appeals to our reptilian and amphibian locals and it’s a time when our pets and these other species are more likely to come into contact with one another. Dr Claire Doyle from Bangalow’s Vitality Vet Care explains that cane toad intoxication is a concern at the moment. Dr Doyle says that “many dogs will be attracted by toads and try and catch them. If they manage to mouth a toad, the toad will secrete a neurological toxin which can cause the pet to become very sick and even die.” If your dog has in fact ‘tasted’ a cane toad, Dr Doyle explains the signs of poisoning will include reddening of the dog’s gums and “they will often be licking and panting a lot too.” If this happens she advises wiping out your dog’s mouth with a damp cloth, cleaning the gums and the roof of the mouth, then keeping your dog cool. Dr Doyle emphasises the importance of monitoring your dog carefully and “if it starts to show any neurological signs - twitching, coma, seizure - it is very important to seek veterinary attention.” Whether you are fan or not, snakes play an important role in the ecosystem and help us considerably by keeping rodent numbers down. There are several venomous snake species in the Northern Rivers area and although most active in spring, they are still present at this time of year. The most commonly sighted

snakes in the area are the brown snake, the small-eyed snake, the rough scale and the red-bellied black snake. Many other nonvenomous snakes reside in the area also, including the carpet snake (which can pose a threat to small to medium sized pets).

Eastern Brown Snake

If there is a snake in your yard, Rick suggests removing your pet from the area and allowing the snake to move through at its own pace. Rick emphasizes the sense in leaving the snake alone, explaining that over 90% of snake bites on humans occur when someone attempts to kill the snake! How do you know if your pet has been bitten? Dr Doyle suggests there are many different symptoms as there are several types of venom. “Some bites will only cause localised inflammation, but this can be a problem in small animals, which are commonly bitten on the face or their throat.” She also explains that snake bites can cause sudden collapse (often with recovery) respiratory issues, vomiting and diarrhoea. One of the common things we will see is dilated pupils. Dr Doyle emphasises that if you think your animal was bitten by a snake, it is recommended

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you seek immediate veterinary attention She explains, “We do have antivenom to treat your pet, so there is a cure.” While we often focus on the harm our pets face when dealing with snakes, it is also important that we recognise the threat our pets pose to snakes and other wildlife. Although some snakes may inflict a venomous bite, generally snakes do not have any real defense against an attack from a dog or cat. Our pet’s curiosity or territorial inclinations can often get the better of them and native wildlife, including snakes and amphibians, can often be victims of bites, violent shaking and ‘pawing’. Cats and dogs, even small dogs, can cause skeletal and internal organ damage and are able to penetrate a snake, lizard or frog’s skin easily. Rick Ulyatt explains that infection resulting in death is incredibly high in any wildlife which comes in contact with cats or suffers bites from dogs and he asks that if your pet does in anyway harm wildlife, you seek advice from a veterinarian or rescue organisation, even if the damage appears minor. Sophie Claire

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The Road to Fitness Tony Keys arrived in the Northern Rivers in 2008, overweight, diabetic, depressed and nursing a back injury. He received it while helping deliver hay to farmers after the Victorian bushfires when a large bale fell on him. The natural tendency to restrict movement to protect the back had inadvertently made things worse over time. “My first attempt at regaining fitness was to walk from Broken Head towards Suffolk Park along the beach. It was hard going and it took a few weeks before I could make it that far and return without being exhausted,” he says, smiling at the memory. An article in Bangalow’s Heartbeat alerted Keys to the existence of the Bangalow Gym. He continues, “I had reached the age of 55 and had never entered a gym in my life. There was an open day but I couldn’t build up the courage to attend. The following week I thought, ‘Sod it, get over pre-conceived ideas and go.” I did, and met personal trainers Neil Williams, Josie Cain and Liz Collier.” “I also met other fellow bodies that had seen better days and friendships and bonds formed that have lasted to this day. With the help of Neil, Josie and Liz, programs were developed and my health started to improve. One Saturday morning I went down to Broken Head and just kept on walking. The sense of achievement when I touched the rocks at Cosy Corner was great. It took two days to get over that walk.” This period Keys describes as the long warm up. He and fellow gym member, Norman, began walking a lap or two at the Bangalow Oval before going to the gym. They asked Liz to start a class for men in their age bracket, suitable for those not fully fit. Soon they were going to the gym three days a week and walking to the Byron Lighthouse from the Surf Club at Main Beach twice a week as well. Those early lighthouse climbs were agony, but the challenge became easier

MARCH 2014

with repetition. It also became obvious to Keys that a few kilos less might be easier to haul up there. Diabetes was still an issue as was blood pressure and other minor ailments including breathlessness. The exercise was improving his health, his blood sugar readings were reducing and there was a small drop in his weight. However it was the feeling of wellbeing that was the greatest lift to Keys’ life. On one visit to the doctor Keys mentioned the continued breathlessness and tests were instigated, resulting in an appointment with a thoracic surgeon in Brisbane. Keys recalls, “He was very blunt, telling me I had pulmonary fibrosis, the finer tubes in the lungs were closing down, my breathing rate was at 70 per cent and this condition would continue to spiral downwards. The big blow being I had only five to ten years left to live. Drugs could give relief to the dry cough, inhalers would be introduced and eventually oxygen would be needed to get me through the day. There is no cure, but the doctors said exercise and diet could hold the disease in check.” The threat of death is a great motivator, but what scared Keys more was the thought of slowly declining into decrepit dependence on drugs and other people. A radical reworking of his lifestyle was required. Weight was the first issue to be tackled. Keys thought he ate healthily, but resolved to halve the amount and reserve treats for rare occasions. Exercise was ramped up, evening workouts introduced and extra walks to the lighthouse added on

weekends. Within six months doctor and specialist confirmed the lungs were stable and lengthened the time between appointments from three months to half yearly. The medications for diabetes and blood pressure were no longer needed. Yoga and Pilates were added to the exercise agenda under the guidance of Josie, building core strength to support the injured back. Now when his back occasionally goes out, he is only incapacitated for a day or two, rather than the week or more he used to be. Neil provided circuit training and a customised fitness mentoring program for more strenuous workouts. Fifteen kilos lighter and much stronger, Keys is convinced that exercise and diet have changed and certainly lengthened his life. At his last appointment the specialist was amazed to see a marginal improvement in his lung capacity, saying it was extremely rare. In Keys own words, “Eating less and exercising more has not only extended my expected life span, but has made the here and now, the day to day living, much more enjoyable. The thanks I owe Neil, Josie, and Liz is considerable, along with the encouragement of fellow gym members. The gym is not just for the big muscle guys but for all of us; a place to meet, work out and improve our lives. I now feel sluggish if I don’t have some form of exercise daily. Even a walk along the beach can make a difference.” Tracey Brown de Langan 17

the arts

NORPA Season Launch 2014

There is something about a launch renowned Tralala Blip – a mixed abilities that entices and excites: when it is a experimental sound ensemble – as both season launch, and more specifically, actors and composers. My Radio Heart writer and director Rosie the NORPA 2014 Season launch, this is cause a for celebration. Dennis from UTP along with NORPA’s NORPA (Northern Rivers Performing Artistic Director Julian Louis have brought Arts) is a theatre company based in together a formidable creative team for Lismore and it has been delivering the project including acclaimed sound quality theatre/performance to artists Lawrence English and Randolph appreciative audiences since 1993. Reimann (Tralala Blip) and video designer NORPA draws inspiration from “...the Sam James. Bangalow local Lydian Dunbar Northern Rivers, our physical and spiritual of Tralala Blip was joined in the band by home - ... from its landscape, history, Mathew Daymond, Claudie Frock, Zac people and culture... programming works Misfud, Phoebe Rose and Randolf Reimann Julian Louis, NORPA’s Artistic Director from leading and emerging national companies that reflect the diversity of our ran us through the programme with video/ screen bites, tempters and teasers, all the community...” while keeping up the snapee repartee, introducing each offering and thanking the performance partners and sponsors. Without patrons and patronage, sponsors, collaborations and commitment on so many levels, live theatre would be dead in the water.  On that watery note, Lake, by Lisa Wilson, “bold in its vision and deeply evocative, Lake literally floods the entire performance area to grapple with our A NORPA Season launch saw the crowd fascination and our fear of water”. As Julian at maximum capacity. Musical intro, quipped, “We will be flooding the stage computer generated; static, over-ride and on purpose!” Lismore does not always voice-over; telephone on hold and hold have a choice when it comes to floods... your breath! Five young innovative talents If water is not your-cup-of-tea, perhaps piece the introduction together. Later in Food (by Steve Rodgers) will whet your the show (yes, a show, enlightening and appetite for live theatre? Julian relates, entertaining as all good launches should be) I realised that this musical intro was indeed a sampling of the 2014 Generator production, My Radio Heart. Inspired by the Marvel comic book series X-men and arcade video games My Radio Heart is a love story for the 21st century. Commissioned by NORPA and developed in collaboration with Western Sydney based Urban Theatre Projects (UTP), My Radio Heart features the internationally 18

“Rodgers and Champion (director) have created a fluid combination of dance and text - this is fun and emotionally charged theatre.” Audience members become restaurant guests as the sisters battle it out on stage. The promo video had most of the audience ready to order on the spot! George Orwell’s 1984 will be served up by shake & stir theatre co and if it is half as good as Animal Farm, then this ‘terrifically gripping theatrical event set against a towering wall of plasma screens” will have you screaming for more. Wulamanayuwi and the Seven Pamanui, written by Jason De Santis and directed by Eamon Flack, is a “modern Aboriginal adventure story inspired by Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” featuring puppets, song and dance, and another recipe for great entertainment for the whole family. Introduce theatre at a young age and you guarantee ongoing culture and creativity with inspiration and experience the cornerstone to theatrical life. Other offerings throughout the year include Henry V, take a bow Bell Shakespeare and director Damien Ryan, with “political spin, patriotism, religion, class, monarchy, brotherhood and how leaders respond during times of crisis.” Oooeee, has anything changed since Shakespeare’s footfall on planet earth? Apart from the way we communicate (tweets, twitters, off-yer-facebook jibes). As Julian so aptly put it, “You get to hear language again...” Crimson Sky (Taikoz) and Circus Oz will also be part of the 2014 extravaganza in the latter part of the year, with something for everyone. As Julian summed up the year’s programme with “luck, faith in the idea and a little touch of magic...” a stage play (choreography on steroids by Animal Farm Collective) unfolds and a major splash of the ‘wow’ factor offers the audience a taste of things to come... Delicious! Visit: Marika Bryant

Phoebe Rose and Lydian Dunbar BANGALOW’S HEARTBEAT

a local couple


2013 Last December, with friends Annie and Richard Millyard, my partner Bruce and I booked a 12 day pre-Christmas cruise to New Zealand. Also on board was our mate Terry Proctor, his mother Joyce and sister Diane. Australia’s September election of a new federal government, with no foreseeable change to the same-sex marriage laws, prompted our decision to avail ourselves of New Zealand’s recent enlightened same-sex marriage laws, and to return to Australia as a married couple. We drew encouragement for our decision from hearing about two young men who had won a trip to New Zealand to participate in the celebrations and to be the first Australian beneficiaries of that legislation.

Thursday, 12 December We were due to dock at 10am in Pilot Bay at the city of Tauranga with its picturesque guardian Mount Maunganui. Bruce phoned Anne Burnett, the local marriage celebrant, with this information. Through previous emails and phone calls they had organised today’s legal and social formalities. Anne

suggested a 10.45am meeting at the small Mount Ocean Sports Club near the exit gates of Tauranga Wharf. Her freely offered self-description as ‘a woman in her prime…carrying an official folder’, left little possibility for mistaken identity. Aboard the Celebrity Solstice, in State Room 7167, there was a contained atmosphere of pre-wedding nerves. Our formal suits, shirts, waist-coats and cravats were in the cabin wardrobe, all creases having dropped out, and were ready to wear. A Ballina florist had handmade our artificial tuber-rose and silver fern boutonnieres to comply with New Zealand’s quarantine laws. We pinned these elegant accessories to the lapels of our jackets. We looked splendid and could have been mistaken for cast members of television’s Downton Abbey. We double checked that we had the wedding rings, the camera and a copy of the special ceremony which we had written, as ours was to be Celebrant Burnett’s first same-sex marriage. Disembarking presented a problem, as hordes of day-excursion trippers had commandeered the exit points. The morning was warming up and we were beginning to feel a little stuffy. I explained to a couple of understanding Immigration Supervisors that we had a marriage celebrant waiting for us and, as if by magic, I was told, “Follow me” and we were led to the head of the line. Another Bangalow friend Shane Moore had flown in especially to join with us in our marriage celebrations. We were asked “Where is the bride?” Bruce’s reply, “There is no bride,” caused some blank stares, but when the penny dropped those expressions were replaced with smiles and applause. A most heartwarming moment was when a few brave souls kissed us, and wished us a happy life.

Outside the gates, we were soon claimed by Anne and David Burnett, and on Bruce’s suggestion, made our way to the most perfect grassy, shaded spot on the fore-shore mid-way between the docked Celebrity Solstice and the impressive Mount Maunganui. Here we helped Anne to set up a couple of chairs and two small, lace covered trestle tables. One would serve as the official table and be used for the signing of the Marriage Licence and other legal documents. The other became the champagne bar, the cost of which would be included in our fee. Our hosts kindly supplied the champagne flutes. At 11am, Celebrant Anne Burnett began reading the Marriage Ceremony for Bruce Anthony McDonough and Kevin Noel Palmer. Thus, after a relationship of 39 years, we were married and declared to be Legal Partners under the Sovereign Laws of New Zealand. Let’s face it! A 39 year engagement is long enough. Bruce McDonough and Kevin Palmer – Bangalow.

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what I’ve been reading

TWO WOLVES Tristan Bancks (8+) A Cherokee Indian grandfather tells his grandson that there is a BATTLE raging inside him, inside all of us. A terrible battle between two wolves. One wolf is BAD – pride, jealousy, greed. The other wolf is GOOD – kindness, hope, truth. The child asks, “Who will win?” The grandfather answers simply, “The one you feed.” Ben Silver’s dream of becoming a detective when he has finished school has been known for so long that his father even calls him ‘Cop’. So one day when four policemen come to the front door of his home asking after his parents he is tense with excitement and fear. His parents are still at the wrecking yard which they own so the cops head off to talk to them at work. But moments later, Ben’s parents speed up the driveway of their home, tyres skidding in the gravel. Mum and Dad race into the house barking at Ben and his little sister Olive to grab some things for the car, they’re going on a holiday! This is pretty strange because they have never been on a holiday before and things get even stranger when, on arriving at their uncle’s house, they swap cars. Tristan Bancks has written a really punchy story which was suspenseful and exciting whilst exploring a complex moral dilemma. When you’re a kid, what do you do when you know that your parents have done something wrong – something so wrong that the police are chasing you? It’s some way through the book before we find out what it is that Ben’s parents have done and Tristan has written adeptly about Ben’s rollercoaster of emotions; how could his parents have done this to them, does he tell the truth, should you always stick by family, he may never be a detective... The book has received wonderful endorsement from John Boyne (author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas). I think that any budding reader will find this book an exciting and suspenseful read. I certainly did. Tristan Bancks is the author of several children’s books and he lives locally in Bangalow. His other books include: My Life and Other Stuff I Made Up, Galactic Adventures, the Mac Slater series and, in April, we will see the release of My Life and Other Stuff that Went Wrong! Carolyn Adams – Bookworms & Papermites

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local author

Choose your own adventure Sally Schofield spoke to local children’s and young adult author Tristan Bancks. With Huckleberry Finn his favourite literary character, it comes as no surprise that local author Tristan Bancks loves an adventure. He has just returned from a six-month writing-photography-homeschooling jaunt around the world with his wife and two kids, aged eight and 10. Which kinda makes rafting down the swirling Mississippi sound like heaven! Writing a book – well two, actually (the yet-to-be-titled third My Life… book and another crime-mystery for middle-graders) while travelling with kids is an ambitious undertaking. But Tristan reckons that life with kids is chaotic anyway and you might as well see the world while you’re at it. Yes, there were tears and occasional tantrums – grownups included – but the ever-changing landscape and exotic accommodation, which included a clocktower and gypsy caravan, meant that the words and the urge to write were Tristan’s constant travel companions. The vibrancy and ‘cultural injection’ of London, Rome and Paris percolated through his thoughts so that when he found the peace and space to write, the words came naturally. Words have always been important to Tristan, who remembers writing short skits to perform at school as a six-year-old. He’s been an actor, TV presenter and filmmaker in his time and is keenly aware of the power the written word has to help readers make sense of the world. “Books, even more so than movies and other forms of storytelling, allow you to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes. They help you to understand parts of your life that were confusing before,” he says. Roald Dahl, Stephen King and Ernest Hemingway have all illuminated the path for Tristan. “Even as an adult, stories help me understand my life and sometimes make me feel not so alone,” he says. As a young reader My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George (in which a 12-yearold boy survives alone in the Catskills for a year, gaining self-esteem


and independence along the way) particularly captivated him. Tristan has referenced the novel in his new book Two Wolves. Two Wolves is the story of 13-year-old Ben Silver whose world is dramatically altered after a late-night visit from the police. This suspenseful narrative, aimed at upper primary school readers, raises questions about destiny, truth, happiness, survival and how people are shaped by the experiences of life. Tristan is soon to embark on a publicity tour for Two which means more suitcases, more flights and more hotel rooms – but hopefully no tears or tantrums. This passionate storyteller is excited to meet his readers and bring his stories alive beyond the page, using book trailers, audio, images and interactive workshops. “After five years writing it, it will be fun to see how other humans respond.” And that sounds like another great adventure.


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sporting women

Somewhere Over the Rainbow “Let it run” was music to my ears as I joined the Rainbow Region Dragon Boat Club for a Thursday one hour training session recently. Those magical words signalled to the team of some twenty crew to stop paddling. Those power strokes at the end of a race drill are challenging but fun at the same time! The team was preparing for the Chinese New Year Regatta at Darling Harbour in Sydney on Saturday, 8 February 2014. The Rainbow Region Dragon Boat Club represents the Northern Rivers NSW region and they train up to five days per week at the NSW Sport and Recreation facility located at Lake Ainsworth in Lennox Head. My coach for the training session was Bangalow Public School’s administration manager, Juliette Sizer. Toward the end of last year, Juliette arranged a day at Lake

Ainsworth for the staff at the school. Going by the photographs taken on the day, the staff enjoyed their training session and learnt some of the finer points of dragon boat racing. There are currently about sixty-three regular members at the club according to club member Monica Wilcox. “There can be a bit of a rotation through the club. Life can take you away from it but everyone is welcome back to it,” says Monica. There is a sense of camaraderie amongst members during the training session l participated in. It’s a team sport. Like most team sports there are different positions, rules and techniques to learn. The club is governed by the DBNSW (Dragon Boats NSW) organisation and they are required to meet set safety standards. Members are trained and taught the various positions aboard a dragon boat, such as coach, sweep and strokes. The club has been evolving since 2004 when Byron Bay local, Barb Pinter, formed a Dragons Abreast team following her breast cancer diagnosis. In June 2005 the region gained access to their first training boat. The following year the Lennox Head Lions Club assisted with providing a new boat that would make Lake Ainsworth its permanent home. Although breast cancer survivors are particularly encouraged to become members of the club, men and women over the age of 12 are welcome to try a training session. The club’s mission is “to

encourage participation in the sport of dragon boating irrespective of age, fitness and athletic ability, and to train members to become the best dragon boaters possible!” Beginners are encouraged to attend a Tuesday or Sunday training session, as Thursdays and Saturdays are generally a little more intense, and Wednesday training is for specific regatta teams. So ‘paddles up’! Be ready to plunge those paddles into the water. For more information about the Rainbow Region Dragon Boat Club please check out their website: au or their Facebook page: facebook. com/pages/Rainbow-Region-Dragon-BoatClub/242937659061466. Andrea Sturgeon



Registered Tax Agents

Taking care of local businesses for over 10 years Contact John HUDSON or Greg CLARK for an initial free consultation 85 BYRON ST, BANGALOW 

PH: 6687 2960


a to 9:30pm Open every day of the year 6:30pm Shop 2, Byron St, Bangalow

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Junior Sports Person of the Year

On Australia Day, Marlie Campton was named as Byron Shire’s Junior Sports Person of the Year. Marlie is a Byron High student from Binna Burra who has put everything into achieving her goals. For such a young age she is remarkably focused, dedicated and passionate about her goals. She is a talented runner who has achieved outstanding results over the last 5 years and set many new records, including National Champion in 1500 and 800 metres, and NSW All School Champion in cross-country. However, it is her latest year that is inspirational. Marlie had to compete up an age level in crosscountry to achieve her goal of representing Australia at the World Schools Cross Country Championships in Israel in March. She managed this by coming 6th at the nationals to gain a spot on the Australian team. Australia is sending 24 students and, of the six girls competing in the individual cross-country event, three are from NSW and three from Queensland. Marlie will have to compete against girls up to 18 years old over a 3,200m course. A big ask for a 15 year old but she is sure to give it her all. We wish her all the best. Judy Baker

Marlie and family say thanks We would publicly like to thank Hernes butchery, Charlotte’s Market and the Bangalow Lions who have never failed to support us as we raise funds to take Marlie and Brianna around the country, competing in cross-country and athletics events. Of course many thanks to everyone in the Bangalow community who stops by our sausage sizzle to buy a sausage sandwich, a raffle ticket or throw a contribution in the bucket. Without the help of our wonderful community both Marlie and Brianna would never have got the chance to take their running as far as they have and we would like everyone to know how grateful we are. Jannine Campton

Marlie Campton with Mayor, Simon Richardson (left) and Australia Day Ambassador, Donny Galella




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march diary

town talk COLOURFUL FUCHSIA Fuchsias (Oenotheraceae) are a beautiful flowering shrub- like plant with showy blossoms lasting for many months throughout summer. They are a native of South America. The most important element to growing them successfully is to find the spot in the garden which keeps them cool during the heat of the day. Semishaded morning or late afternoon sun and a well drained position suits them best. Fuchsias will flower for many months as long as they get an occasional watering in the dry times and dead heads are removed after flowering. A pruning in winter will also improve next seasons flower yield. They can be propagated from cuttings or seeds. Another benefit of these lovely flowers is that they attract butterflies and small birds like wrens into the garden Lyn Plummer

1 Paul Kelly tribute

2 Letters to Parents

afternoon at Bowlo

3 ADFAS 8 Tea rooms open Saturdays; B and W ball, Mullum; LaSalsa as possible, wrapping him in a towel and putting him in a quiet and safe spot when they arrived at their destination. The baby was soon collected by a WIRES volunteer and is now in care with a chance of survival and eventual release back into the wild. Muriel Kinson WIRES

9 BB Film Festival ends

10 Bowlo board election

and AGM

14 Ajna Tattoo art exhibition 15 Newrybar cinema

New Horizons

17 Op shop sale starts

Georgie Ward from the Little Art Shop outside her thatched cottage in the Cornish village of Alcombe. eds

21 ANZAC exhibition begins 22 Bangalow P&C trivia night

23 Bangalow Parklands

launch; Bangalow market

26 Museum cocktail party 28 Rory McLeod

WIRES to the rescue An alert Alia and Emil of Dorroughby recently spotted this tiny 91-gram baby ringtail possum sitting by the roadside on their way to Whian Whian. Their parents pulled over and immediately called WIRES but could not locate a possum parent in the vicinity. They handled the baby as little

31 Heartbeat reader

surveys due

HB deadlines for April issue: 12 March (ads) 17 March (copy)

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Bangalow Heartbeat March 2014  
Bangalow Heartbeat March 2014  

Celebrating the life and times of the local community