Page 1


magical mogo Take a journey along the Grand Pacific Drive to the Mogo Zoo. Full story page 4.

Lots of great prizes “Up For Grabs” see page 30

celebrate your lifestyle!


contact Johnny Welsh 0407 804 050

I SSU E 2 DE C E M B E R /J ANU ARY 2 0 1 2

Inside this issue... Magical Mogo Zoo ............ Page 4 Let’s Travel ........................ Page 11 John Engligh: Still Rocking On! – page 22

Look who’s back! – page 24

“London Calling” part 2 – page 20

It’s Entertainment ............. Page 21 Brain Benders puzzles ..... Page 29

Welcome to Hey! Boomers Welcome to the holiday edition of “Hey! Boomers”. Hey! Boomers is a monthly publication celebrating the active lifestyle of people between the ages of 45 to 65. In general,todays Australian Boomers are passionate about their grandchildren and spend money on them accordingly. They also are now “spending the kids’ inheritance”. Boomers are spending more time online doing research, chatting to family and friends and sharing information. Our objective here at Hey! Boomers is to inform readers of today’s trends in the marketplace, including Vacation Getaways, Beauty Products, Health, Entertainment, Finance, House and Garden, Telecommunications and Pet Ownership, and including stories of interest reflecting todays Baby Boomers’ own generation. This edition kicks off with our cover story on the magical Mogo Zoo (page 4). Our travel section has the second of three instalments on our “London Calling” story by guest travel writer George Kimpton and our It’s Entertainment section is jam packed with reviews, interviews and all the latest entertainment info. Check out our “Up For Grabs” page for some great give aways, page 30.

Don’t miss next months’ edition featuring a special interview with Bobby Rydell!


Servicing the Central Coast and Hunter for over 25 years providing all aspects of landscaping for residential & commerical works. • paving • retaining walls • pool surrounds • fountains & water features • decks & pergolas • general landscaping

“Up For Grabs” Give Aways Galore! .................. Page 30 Horoscopes ...................... Page 31

hey! Boomers is published by

Adcom Publishing Pty Ltd. Tel: 02 4334 7843 Suite 169, 3 Holtermann Street, Crows Nest NSW 2065 Disclaimer This publication is intended as an information source only and is not in any way an endorsement of any product or service mentioned. Every effort has been made to ensure the information in this publication is up to date and correct at time of printing. The publisher does not accept responsibility for an errors, omissions or inaccuracies. No representation is made as to the quality or suitability for any purpose of any goods or services offered by any organisations in this publication.


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Only at Mogo Zoo M

any people have asked me “Where is Mogo and where is Mogo Zoo? I have never heard of it.” Well folks, I am letting everyone and anyone know all about this amazing privately owned Zoo at 222 Tomakin Road Mogo - just 10 minutes south of Batemans Bay. Mogo Zoo is an organisation committed to the survival of endangered animals and provides world standard facilities for over 200 animals of more than 47 rare and exotic species, including the White Lions of ‘Timbavati’. Mogo Zoo also boasts the largest collection of primates in any privately owned zoo in Australia including Golden Tamarins and Silvery Gibbons, and the cutest Pygmy Marmosets and is actively involved in many Global Breeding Programs. I was so excited to be offered a personal tour of the Zoo and have a friendly chat with Sally who is the proud owner of the Zoo and the general manager John who is just bursting with information on every animal at the Zoo. We began our chat with the Silvery Gibbons happily calling in their very comfortable enclosure which is the first exhibit visitor’s view. Sally explained that “every single cent that goes through the gates goes directly back into Mogo Zoo. People just don’t realise how much money we spend to ensure our animals have the best quality of life. The primates all eat the freshest fruit and veg and have their own vet and we work very closely with our vet. We have our own food preparation room and a specially developed diet. You can eat any of the primates’ food any day of the week. It is a huge expense to feed all the animals.” I asked Sally where they purchase their food from. “We buy our Giraffe products and primate food from Perth which is a great expense but when you look at the animal’s condition here it is all worth it.” Sally says smiling proudly. “We research to make sure everything is perfect. There are 11 dedicated keepers who work at Mogo Zoo and fortunately we have the right people working for us with the right attitudes.” “We are helping to save the species and I believe that the animals need consistency and working with the primates you 4

have to have a very calming, laid back attitude. The little primates are so delicate and you have to know your animals, so if there is a problem it will be detected sooner rather than later.” “We have lots of different Breeding Programs going on at the moment - if the animals are happy they will breed. We are helping to save many species and we are providing them with a really good lifestyle, quality of life and enrichment.” Sally then spoke of a personal nature “The other thing that gives me a tremendous amount of satisfaction is the pleasure that I see in the people that visit the zoo, for something that I have worked very hard for.” I then asked Sally what her vision is for Mogo Zoo in the next few years. “What I want to accomplish in the near future is to establish the Mogo Zoo Foundation, which the zoo has been working on for quite some time. I would like to start a wildlife clinic and a programme for working with people with disabilities and I hope to have this up and running within the next 5 years. In the very beginning, back in 1992, my vision was that if we were to have animals behind wire and if the public come and pay to see them, then they needed to be animals that would benefit from having to be in captivity, and that is exactly what we have done.” Sally then had to tend to her paperwork and left me in the capable hands of John who guided us through the exhibits and explaining every detail about the animals. We encountered Meerkats, Golden Tamarins, and the cutest and tiniest primate I have ever seen The Pygmy Marmosets, which John mentioned is the smallest true Monkey in the world! Next

stop, we encounter Emperor Tamarins which John says are breeding very successfully and the ever so adorable Red Pandas, then more exotic Tamarins of many breeds. Heading down the pathway we now come to the Meerkats – ever so cute and the playful Otters which I noticed were a crowd pleaser with the children. We then encountered the Deer and Kangaroo where the little ones (and not so little ones) can experience a feeding and touch and feel. John then led us to the Chimpanzee enclosure where he proudly mentioned that their enclosure had been recently developed at a cost of just on $600,000.00 which included extra thick viewing glass. Then it was off to the Lions, a proud male with his sister. This experience was simply amazing. John called Mafuta and Numbi over by name and we then patted and chatted with them. The Lions groaned with pleasure as we touched them through the wire. They are simply extraordinary up

From front page - cover image:Siamang primates; mother Fern and her precious baby Story by Deborah Sylvester.

celebrate your LIFESTYLE to support our front cover stars Siamang primates - Fern and her baby. If you would like to become a supporter please contact the Zoo directly on (02) 4474-4930 So folks....Now you know where Mogo Zoo is and what Mogo Zoo has to offer – NOW ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS GO THERE!

Mogo Zoo Achievements: 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2010 & 2011 – Winner – Best Tourist Attraction (did not enter Awards in 2004, 2008 or 2009) Winner – 2011 People’s Choice Award South Coast Tourism Awards

close. John has a very close relationship with the Lions and they too are very relaxed and loving towards him. We then walked further to view the Ostriches, Zebras and the elegant Giraffes. From here we encountered the Brazilian Tapir who were just lazing around with not a care in the world. Then to my surprise, we hopped on a small dinghy to have a close personal encounter with the Lemurs on Lemur Island. I was in awe of these tiny, gentle and very friendly primates. They are very inquisitive and just love to be hand fed. Reluctantly we parted the Island only to be looked at by the spider monkeys on another island. It was as if we were the exhibit to these mischievous playful primates! After the memorable encounter with the Lemurs, John, Maria, myself and partner were introduced to Clive. We noticed a closed

door and when the door opened I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. A most exquisite Tiger named Kinwah. We then had the surprising opportunity of hand feeding him through just a wired fence. We were given chicken necks and Kinwah took the food tenderly from our hands. He had better manners than my little Jack Russell! I just could not take my eyes and hands off him. It was a remarkable event. The experience that I came upon at Mogo Zoo will be one of the most memorable encounters of my life to date and I really do hope that all our readers take a trip to Mogo Zoo and have the most absorbing and educational day out for yourself and your family. You will also be supporting Mogo Zoo. As John states “Sally has amazing vision for the future and thousands of WILD ideas to make Mogo Zoo the best it can be. Mogo Zoo’s future is nothing short of outstanding!” Hey! Boomers would like to assist in supporting Mogo Zoo by offering our readers the opportunity to sponsor an animal. This month we would like

In 2006 Sally Padey received the Jeff Britten Award in the Eurobodalla Shire Australia Day Awards – the Award was in recognition of Sally’s achievements in establishing and developing Mogo Zoo, and in particular the development of a breeding program for endangered animals. Australian Biosecurity Awards – Certificate of Commendation for making an outstanding contribution to maintaining Australia’s biosecurity integrity in 2009. Sally Padey, owner of Mogo Zoo, was nominated for the 2010 and 2011 Telstra Business Women’s Awards. Winner - Excellence in Tourism - 2010 Winner - Most Outstanding Business of the Year - 2010 Batemans Bay Business Awards. Winner - Silver Award - NSW Tourism Awards – 2011 (this is the first occasion we’ve entered the Awards at State level) Winner - Gold Award - NSW Tourism Awards The Sun Herald People’s Choice Award – 2011 (from over 200,000 votes, Mogo Zoo received 24% of all votes). NSW State Tourism Awards.

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Ho ho ho!

Some famous folks wish you a Merryy Christmas... The greatest gifts you can give are time and love, free for all to share. I wish you all a very cheerful and safe Christmas.

Lots of Love, Sylvia Raye

G’day readers its Adam Harvey here. I hope you all have a safe and Merry Christmas and a happy new year. Please be careful out on the roads over the festive season and I hope Santa is good to you! December is the time to remember how lucky we are down here. We’re on the beach at Christmas, getting tanned and drinking beer. Here’s to a rock-bopping Christmas and remember to....Keep on Ragin to Stop the Aging!

The Delltones

Origins of the Christmas Tree T

he Christmas tree is a tradition associated with the celebration of Christmas. The Christmas tree is traditionally brought into the home and decorated with Christmas lights (originally candles), ornaments, garlands, tinsel, and candy canes during the days around Christmas. An angel or star is placed at the top of the tree, representing the host of angels or the Star of Bethlehem from the Nativity. The earliest accounts of decorating an evergreen tree at Christmas were recorded in Livonia and in Germany in the 16th century. The Christmas tree is sometimes called a Yule tree, particularly by those who wish to avoid Christian connections, but others explicitly distinguish between the two or identify the Yule tree with an undecorated evergreen tree. The custom of erecting a decorated Christmas tree can be historically traced back at least as far as 15th century Livonia (present-day Estonia and Latvia) and 16th century Northern Germany. According to the first documented uses of a Christmas tree in Estonia, in 1441, 1442, and 1514, the Brotherhood of Blackheads erected a tree for the holidays in their brotherhood house in Reval (now Tallinn). At the last night of the celebrations leading up to the holidays, the tree was taken to the Town Hall Square where the members of the brotherhood danced around it. In 1584, the pastor and chronicler Balthasar Russow wrote of an established tradition of setting up a decorated spruce at the market square where the young men “went with a flock of maidens and women, first sang and danced there and then set the tree aflame”. The Christmas tree became widely adopted by the Estonians themselves only in the 19th century. In the German Middle Ages, mystery plays at Christmas time within churches often featured an evergreen “Paradise tree” from which an apple was plucked. The first evidence of Christmas

trees outside of a church is of the 16th century, with trees in guild halls decorated with sweets to be enjoyed by the apprentices and children. (A Bremen guild chronicle of 1570 reports that a small tree decorated with “apples, nuts, dates, pretzels and paper flowers” was erected in the guild-house for the benefit of the guild members’ children, who collected the dainties on Christmas Day.) Soon after, they are seen in the houses of upper-class Protestant families as a counterpart to the Catholic Christmas cribs. In the 18th century they begin to be adorned with candles, which were expensive items. Only in the 19th century did they come into use more widely, often in schools and inns before they appeared in homes. The modern Christmas tree originated in western Germany. The main prop of a popular medieval play about Adam and Eve was a fir tree hung with apples (paradise tree) representing the Garden of Eden. The Germans set up a paradise tree in their homes on December 24, the religious feast day of Adam and Eve. They hung wafers on it (symbolizing the host, the Christian sign of redemption); in a later tradition, the wafers were replaced by cookies of various shapes. Candles, too, were often added as the symbol of Christ. In the same room, during the Christmas season, was the Christmas pyramid, a triangular construction of wood, with shelves to hold Christmas figurines, decorated with evergreens, candles, and a star. By the 16th century, the Christmas pyramid and paradise tree had merged, becoming the Christmas tree. The tradition still persists that Christmas trees should not be decorated until Christmas Eve, which is the day of Adam and Eve. Legends attribute the invention of the Christmas tree instead to Saint Boniface (c. 680 755), the Apostle of the Germans, and to Martin Luther. Information courtesy of

I hope that Santa brings you all that you desire and that 2012 brings you heaps of excitement, fulfilment and most importantly good health.


Marty Rhone

Beccy would like to wish all our readers a very Merry Christmas. “This year is a year to be proud of all your achievements and look forward to the future.“

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Beccy Cole

I hope that Santa brings you all that you desire and that 2012 brings you heaps of excitement, fulfilment and most importantly good health.

Bill Chambers

A big merry Christmas and I encourage all Hey! Boomers readers to listen to Country Music in 2012.

Amber Lawrence


Wishing all Hey! Boomers readers & advertisers a very Merry Christmas and a safe & happy New Year! creativegraphicdesign andadvertising solutionsfor smallbusiness e: t: 4333 6274 see samples of our designs at:

did you KNOW? The man behind the animation of Australia’s favourite bush stories W

e all grew up with the cheeky and loveable koala Blinky Bill, created by New Zealand-born Australian author Dorothy Wall. The character of Blinky first appeared in Brooke Nicholls’1933 book, Jacko - the Broadcasting Kookaburra. Blinky Bill is known for his mischievousness and his love for his mother. His friends include his adopted sister Nutsy, his kangaroo friend Splodge, his platypus friend Flap, Marcia the marsupial mouse, and his mentor Mr Wombat or Wombo, as Blinky prefers to call him. The first television series from the 1980s featured actors, Robyn Moore (Blinky Bill and female characters); Keith Scott (various male characters) and Ross Higgins (various characters), titled The New Adventures of Blinky Bill. Blinky Bill was also made into an animated movie, Blinky Bill: The Mischievous Koala, by Yoram Gross Film Studios in Australia on 17 September 1992. Yoram has produced, directed and scripted a total of sixteen feature films for children. Eight of these films continue the adventures of Dot from the original film “Dot and the Kangaroo”. “Dot and the Bunny” (1982) was the winner of the 1983 Best Animated Film at the 28th Asia Pacific Film Festival, and “Dot and Keeto” won the Red Ribbon Award at the 1986 American Film and Video Festival. Dot and the Kangaroo was the first animated feature film produced by the Yoram Gross Film Studio in 1977 which utilised a special aerial image technique of drawings over live action backgrounds shot around the Blue Mountains. The same style was used in Yorram’s The Little Convict, made in 1979 from Gross’s own inspiration and starring Rolf Harris as the lead live action character. The film was based on an Australian classic best seller by Ethel Pedley, and was described by ABC film critic, John Hinde, as a “brilliant technical success and the best cartoon film originated in Australia”. It won Best Children’s Film in Tehran and also won a Sammy Award for the Best Animated Film at the 1978 Australian Film and Television Awards. Yoram’s 1991 animated film, “The Magic Riddle”, is based on an original story Yoram came up with, and is a mixture of fairy tales from Hans Christian Andersen, the Brothers Grimm and many other old time favourites. In May 2007, the New South

Wales Film and Television Office honoured Yoram by hosting a special retrospective screening featuring highlights of his career – from his early days of experimental film making in Israel, through to excerpts from his box office successes. One of the highlights of the tribute was the screening of “Autumn in Krakow”, a poignant short film on his home town of Kraków, based on his late brother Nathan’s poetry. Jerzy (Yoram) Gross was born in October 1926 at Kraków, Poland to a Jewish family, who endured World War II under the Nazi regime. His family was on Oskar Schindler’s infamous list, but chose to make their own risky escape, moving hiding places 72 times. “One day I was a playful and normal 13 year old boy, the next day I woke up and had to become a man” Yoram recollects of his worn torn childhood. Yoram’s first love was music: “All I wanted to do was play Chopin”, says Yoram where he studied music and musiciology at Kraków University. Yoram commenced his film career as an assistant to Polish directors Cenkalski and Buczowski, as well as the Dutch director, Yoris Ivens. He studied script writing under Carl Forman. He first entered the film industry in 1947 in Kraków when, at the age of 20, Yoram became one of Jerzy Toeplitz’ first students. Jerzy Toeplitz founded the Polish Film Institute (he also founded the Swiss Film Institute and set up, at the invitation of the Federal Government, the Australian Film and Television School. In 1950, Yoram moved from Poland to Israel, where he worked as a newsreel and documentary cameraman. He then became an independent film producer and director and began winning prizes at film festivals all over the world. His full-length feature, “Joseph the Dreamer” (1961), a biblical story, received special prizes in many countries all over the world. His world famous experimental film “Chansons sans Paroles” (1958) was selected by international film critics as “the most interesting film of 1959”. Another comedy, “One Pound Only” (1964), set the box office record of the year. Yoram now holds more than 80 international awards for his various films In 1966, Gross and his second wife Sandra had their first child, award-winning composer Guy Gross. After his experiences

during WWII, Gross didn’t want his family to experience the violence that threatened their peaceful lives in Israel. The 1967 Six-Day-War finally convinced him to move to Australia and, with his knowledge, reputation and the animation equipment he brought all the way from Israel. The Gross family then established Yoram Gross Film Studios, initially working from home. Yoram continued to make experimental films. He produced film clips for the popular weekly television music program “Bandstand”. including John Farnham’s first ever music video which combined live action with animation. At the Sydney Film Festival in 1970 he was awarded second prize for “The Politicians” in the category of best Australian-made film, and at the 1971 Australian Film Awards, his film “To Nefretiti” won the bronze award. Since 1977 Yoram has devoted his energies to making featurelength animated films and series, but continues his interest in experimental films with awards to assist young filmmakers. Yoram strongly believes that it is his turn to continue the tradition from which he benefited so much in the early days of his career and established, amongst other annual prizes, the Yoram Gross Award for Best Animated Film at the Sydney Film Festival and the Yoram Gross Best Animation Award at the Flickerfest International Film Festival. Yoram has written a book on making animated films titled “The First Animated Step” (1975), and produced a film of the same title. These invaluable education materials aid in teaching the art of animation in schools and have been in constant use since their production. In March 1999, EM.TV acquired from Village Roadshow Limited, a 50% share ownership in Yoram Gross Film Studios. The new millennium cemented Yoram Gross and EM.TV’s position as the number one

family entertainment business in Australia and supplier of quality children’s content to the world. The studio completed a second series of both Flipper & Lopaka and Tabaluga as well as a brand new series, Old Tom. Blinky Bill is also currently being screened on the ABC kids channel. The Seven Network currently programs a dedicated block of television produced by Yoram Gross - a fulfilment of its commitment to screen quality ‘C classified’ drama for the children of Australia. Yoram’s films and series have been enjoyed all over the world and his audience continues to grow from day to day. In 1995 he was awarded the prestigious Order of Australia for his outstanding achievements and for his contribution to the Australian film industry. In April 2011 Yoram released his autobiography “My Animated Life” which is his life told simply and directly, and cannot be read without emotion. This is the story of a youth who was forced to grow up during the Nazi occupation of his country, Poland. Although he saw death all around him, he reached out to life. Despite the surrounding horrors, the book is surprisingly cheerful. In 1995 Gross was awarded the Order of Australia for his outstanding achievements and for his contribution to the Australian film industry. Yoram Gross is a remarkable yet humble man who after the ordeal of growing up in wartime hell, has a tremendous faith in

humanity! What makes Yoram Gross happy? “I love this profession – it makes me happy and to just be happy with all things in life.” Achievements Yoram Gross holds more than 80 international awards for his various films. In 1995 Yoram Gross was awarded the prestigious Order of Australia for his outstanding achievements and contribution to the Australian film industry. His full-length feature, “Joseph the Dreamer” (1961), a biblical story, received special prizes in many countries all over the world, including an official entry in the 1961 Cannes Film Festival. His experimental film “Chansons sans Paroles” (1958) was selected by international film critics as “the most interesting film of 1959” and shared third prize with Roman Polanski at the Bruxelles Experimental Film Festival in1958 “One Pound Only” (1964), set the box office record of the year. At the Sydney Film Festival in 1970 he was awarded second prize for “The Politicians” in the category of best Australian-made film. At the 1971 Australian Film Awards, his film “To Nefretiti” won the bronze award. “Dot and the Kangaroo” won Best Children’s Film in Tehran and also won a Sammy Award for the Best Animated Film at the 1978 Australian Film and Television Awards. “Dot and the Bunny” won the 1983 Best Animated Film at the 28th Asia Pacific Film Festival. “Dot and Keeto” won the Red Ribbon Award at the 1986 American Film and Video Festival. Mr Gross was presented with the Murray Forrest Award for Achievement in Film Craft at the Australian International Movie Convention on August 25 2011. In 2012 at the Australian premiere of Yoram’s life documentary film, the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Canberra will be honouring Yoram with an Order of Merit medal to recognise his significant contribution towards the promotion of Polish culture/ relations in Australia. WIN A PERSONAL SIGNED COPY OF YORAM GROSS – “MY ANIMATED LIFE” VALUED AT $29.95. See page 30 for details. Next month we feature a story on the woman behind the voice of Blinky Bill... Mrs Robyn Moore

De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 7

Computers with George Kimpton Upgrading your computer...what next? W

ell you have two choices, either rebuild your current one or buy a new one. I say rebuild, as one choice, because it is most likely that your old computer will not be capable of loading and running Windows 7, as it is, and, let’s face it, 7 is all you can choose from unless you can manage to find a spare copy of Vista, which I would not recommend. At least 7 has managed to overcome many problems that Vista had. Vista had a very bad reputation and many professionals wouldn’t touch it. But there are choices, which version of Windows to buy, different prices of course. First up you need to decide whether to run what is called 32 Bit or 64 bit versions. Home Premium, Professional Upgrade and Ultimate Upgrade, each has both 32 and 64 bit versions. 64 Bit is recommended but you need to think before you lock yourself in. To find out whether you are running 32 or 64, click on Start then Right Click on My Computer then Properties and in the General window if you don’t see 64 Bit you will be running 32 Bit. Most likely you will be running 32. Keep this in mind because using the 32 Bit version could probably mean you can still use much of your old software. Microsoft have made it fairly easy to see if you are compatible by downloading a software package and the easy way to find it is with Google. Just type in Windows 7 Compatibility and look for Compatibility Package. This is a must if you are thinking of upgrading yourself. Basically as far as I can see it is mainly a matter of Processor Speed, RAM size and Hard Drive space apart from having a graphics card that is good enough. The Processor has to be at least 1GigaHertz ( Hz ) with RAM 1 GigaByte (GB ), unless you choose to buy the best version,Windows 7 Professional or Ultimate, which allow you to run a multi boot virtual version running XP for older software. For this you need an extra 3.3 GB of RAM plus an extra 15 GB of hard drive.. This is another point to 8

consider before upgrading, is your current software able to run under Windows 7. the above path might be worth considering because you can still use your old software, and save money there. It is very important to do a compatibility test. Because when I did a test run on this computer I am using now, I was told I needed to do a Custom Install which means, unlike earlier versions, you cannot automatically bring your old software across when you install the new Windows 7. Earlier versions of Windows adjusted old software into the system in most cases. I would need to Install Windows 7 and then reinstall all my software again and if it didn’t handle Windows 7 tough luck, plus, also quite a few hours reinstalling the program that were OK. Do you still want to upgrade yourself? New computers are going at very good prices these day and you can get them built to your own specifications if you can find a good reliable computer store. I use DCA Computers here in Castle Hill.

Check their web site. They come highly recommended. First sit down and make two lists. One, all the things your computer must be able to do i.e. Internet, word processing and photos. The second list is a wish list, if you have the funds, like Video Editing, CAD, serious games etc.. The boys will take a look at your lists and give you a quote and you could well find some of those wishes can be built in at the start. If not, then later when you have some spare cash. If I didn’t frighten you off then aim for at least 4 GB of RAM, at least 1 TB of hard drive and a good graphics card on a new motherboard. One word of advice get your hard drive split into more than one partition. The reason for this is if Windows fails and you don’t have a backup you lose everything when you reinstall it . With extra partitions you can keep programs and documents in separate partitions and they do not vanish when you reinstall Windows I don’t advise laptops for a number of reasons. The first

being they run on batteries and even with the latest batteries there is a limited working time even if you run it on the mains. Why laptop? Laptops are mobility, not chained to the power point and they have a lousy keyboard and that Mouse Pad, well ??? It is also almost impossible to add on extra facilities except as external where a desktop usually has loads of room to modify and to add things inside out of the way and with laptops you are bound to the manufacturer, his parts, his service and his price unless out of warranty. Happy computing and any problems or queries contact me:


indows XP Mode and Windows Virtual PC, available on Windows 7 Professional and Windows 7 Ultimate, allow

you to run multiple Windows environments, such as Windows XP Mode, from your Windows 7 desktop. Listen to what customers are saying about Windows XP Mode... Key features Microsoft has added several new features to Windows Virtual PC to make it easy to use and to help you run many older Windows XP applications in Windows 7. • One click launch of Windows XP Mode applications • USB support • Get started with Windows XP Mode • Find out how to best configure Windows Virtual PC to work for you. • Running Windows XP Mode for your small business • Customizing virtual machines for IT Pros •Working with multiple operating systems for developers Your PC must run genuine Windows 7 to install Windows XP Mode.



hief Minister, Katy Gallagher, has announced recently retired Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston AC AFC, as the ACT Australian of the Year for 2012.

CALLING ALL GNOMES The search is on…

The announcement was made at a ceremony at the National Portrait Gallery late November. “Air Chief Marshal Houston has been an exemplary role model and servant to the nation during his six years service as defence force chief before retiring in July this year,” the Chief Minister said. “He has also been an inspirational role model as a father with his son Robert recently saying that he had always been a good example of how to be a man and how to be a father,” she said. Finalists for the ACT Australian of the Year were: Professor Michael Gore AM, science educator Ms Janne Graham AM, health care advocate Professor Andrew Blakers, solar energy scientist “The Australian of the Year Award provides a focal point for Australia Day celebrations,” the Chief Minister said. “These Awards provide us with an opportunity to highlight the contributions of Australians from all walks of life and reflect the role of sport and the arts in Australian culture; the impact of science, multiculturalism, and volunteerism; and the special status of Australia’s Indigenous people. The Australian of the Year Award provides all Australians with the opportunity to recognise someone who makes them proud,” she said. “I’d also like to congratulate this year’s ACT Local Hero, Ms Julie Tongs; the ACT Young Australian of the Year, Dr Sam Prince; and ACT Senior Australian of the Year, Ms Betty Churcher. “Each one of them has made an enormous contribution to our community and beyond and I wish them well at the national awards,” the Chief Minister said. The winner of each of the four categories will go on to represent the Territory at the national awards to be presented in Canberra on Australia Day Eve as part of the Australia Day celebrations. The ACT Government is proud to be playing a significant role in the Australia Day program, in cooperation with the National Australia Day Council and the award sponsors. Award recipients and nominees The ACT Senior Australian of the Year Award was presented to artist icon, Ms Betty Churcher AO, who is best known for her role as director of

the National Gallery of Australia. Ms Churcher has been a role model for women for many years. As a painter in her own right, Ms Churcher has dedicated much of her working life to making art accessible and relevant to the public. Finalists for ACT Senior Australian of the Year were: Mr Ante Dabro, sculptor and teacher Mr George Howe OAM, carillonist Professor Peter Drysdale AM, Asia academic The ACT Young Australian of the Year Award was presented to Dr Sam Prince, entrepreneur, medical doctor and philanthropist. At the age of 21, Dr Prince established the franchise, Zambrero Fresh Mex Grill and later created the E-magine Foundation. Through this not-for-profit group Sam uses his business ventures to fund projects that deliver health and education resources to Indigenous Australians and developing countries. Finalists for ACT Young Australian of the Year were: Mr Patrick Mills, Olympic basketballer Miss Jillian Thomsen, community activist Dr Rebekah White, research psychologist The ACT Local Hero Award was presented to health care leader, Ms Julie Tongs, a Wiradjuri woman, who for over 20 years has excelled in advocating for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Julie is CEO of Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service in Canberra. Julie is a role model for her community and for mainstream Australia, with her vision and energy providing for the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the ACT and region. Finalists for ACT Local Hero were: Ms Elizabeth Dawson, community champion Mr Michael Pilbrow, community activist Mrs Marianne Dickie, human rights advocate Pictured above: Katy Gallagher [image courtesy The Australian]


ower Blue Mountains Rotary Gnome Master Trevor Lloyd is scouring gardens and homes throughout the Mountains to find and encourage the growing gnome population to take part in the annual Australian Gnome Convention at Glenbrook Park on Australia Day. The Gnome Master is especially keen to make contact with all of the wonderful gnomes involved in the great Cootamundra Gnome Rescue two years ago. He explained that some 1800 gnomes were rescue and most went to caring foster homes throughout the Mountains and beyond – on the promise they would return to renew acquaintances with old friends on Australia Day each year. Trevor Lloyd estimated that about half of that number returned for the first anniversary last year. “This is good news as it indicates all are very happy and settled in their new homes,” he added. Lower Blue Mountains Rotary Australia Day Chairman Geoff Vallance emphasised that Australia Day (January 26) will focus on family fun. “We have much to be grateful in Australia. Our freedoms and relaxed way of life is very special. It is important that we all celebrate accordingly on our special national day,” he said. Pictured – Gnome Master Trevor Lloyd visited many local gardens recently to encourage resident gnomes to enjoy the Australian Gnome Convention festivities at Glenbrook Park on January 26.

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Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, oi oi oi! Hey! Boomers takes a look at Australia Day – it’s origins, what it means today and how we plan to spend the day... Compiled by Jody Sharpe.


ustralia Day is January 26 and commemorates the establishment of the first settlement at Port Jackson, now part of Sydney, in 1788. It is an opportunity for Australians to come together to celebrate their country and culture. There are reflections on the achievements of the nation and explorations of way to make the country even better in the future. Australians show their pride for their country on Australia Day. Australia Day is a public holiday in all states and territories. All schools and post offices are closed. Some public transport services do not operate and others run a reduced service. Stores are often open, but may have reduced opening hours. There may be some congestion on roads, particularly close to major events. Background On January 26, 1788, the First Fleet of 11 ships from Great Britain arrived at Port Jackson, which now forms Sydney Harbour. The First Fleet was led by Captain Arthur Philip. He established the Colony of New South Wales, the first penal colony in Australia. By 1808, January 26 was being celebrated as “First Landing Day” or “Foundation Day” with drinking and merriment. Thirty years after the arrival of the First Fleet, in 1818, the Governor of Australia ordered a 30-gun salute, hosted a dinner ball at Government House and gave government employees a holiday. In the following years, employees of banks and other organizations were also given holidays. In the following decades, horse racing and regattas were popular activities on January 26. In 1838, Foundation Day was Australia’s first public holiday. It was also the occasion of the first public celebrations of the founding of Australia. The shores of Sydney Harbour were crowded and there was a firework display. By 1888, January 26 had become known as ‘Anniversary Day’ was celebrated in all colonies except Adelaide. In 1888, the centenary of the arrival of the First Fleet was celebrated with ceremonies, exhibitions, banquets, regattas, fireworks and the unveiling of a statue of Queen Victoria. By 1935, January 26 was known as Australia Day in all states except New South Wales, where it was still called Anniversary Day. In 1938, large scale celebrations were held. These included a re-enactment of the landing of the First Fleet, which did not mention the convict status of many of the passengers on these ships. The re-enactment is included the removal of a group of Aborigines. Shortly before the celebrations, a group of Aboriginal activists arranged a “Day of Mourning”. They used this to campaign for citizenship and equal rights for Aborigines.

From 1946, January 26 was known as Australia Day in all states. However, the public holiday was moved to the Monday nearest to January 26 to create a long weekend. Since 1994, the Australia Day public holiday has been on January 26 in all states and territories. The anniversary of the first permanent European settlement in Australia is not a cause for celebration for all citizens. Indigenous Australians often feel that the celebrations on Australia Day exclude them and their culture, which was thriving for thousands of years before the arrival of the First Fleet. What do people do today? Many people have a day off work and use the day to picnic in a park, to go shopping or to play or to watch sports events. In some places, particularly Lake Burley Griffin, spectacular public fireworks displays are held. In addition, the Australian of the Year Awards are presented. These are awards for Australians who have made an outstanding contribution to their country or community. In some towns and cities, citizenship ceremonies are held on Australia Day. These are ceremonies to welcome immigrants to the country who have been granted Australian citizenship. Australia Day Address Since its inception in 1997 and in a fitting build up to Australia Day, the Australia Day Address has become one of the nation’s most important and successful Australia Day initiatives. The Address taps into the essence of what the 26 January is all about – celebrating and reflecting on our national spirit. Eminent individuals are invited to provide their own unique perspective on issues such as Australia’s identity and the challenges that confront our society. The 2012 Australia Day Address will be delivered by Associate Professor Charles Teo AM. National Anthem...Do You Know Verse 2? We all know the first verse of the National Anthem, but do you know the second verse? Australians all let us rejoice, For we are young and free, We’ve golden soil and wealth for toil; Our home is girt by sea; Our land abounds in nature’s gifts Of beauty rich and rare, In history’s page, let every stage Advance Australia Fair. In joyful strains then let us sing, Advance Australia Fair. Beneath our radiant Southern Cross We’ll toil with hearts and hands; To make this Commonwealth of ours Renowned of all the lands; For those who’ve come across the seas We’ve boundless plains to share: With courage let us all combine To Advance Australia Fair. In joyful strains then let us sing, Advance Australia Fair.

What does Australia Day mean to Hey! Boomers readers: Lyn Brooks, 49 – Bateau Bay Thank God we live in country where we can sip champagne while wearing our bikini and tuck into a juicy steak fresh off the BBQ! Anyone is welcome to the party provided there is respect for our culture!


Suzanne Vanechop, 60 – Mittagong I’ve always had to work on Australia Day so I’ve never really celebrated it. The only time I went all out with celebrations was in 1988 when they had the bi centenery in Sydney.

Dianne Gillett, 62 – Ourimbah Australia Day to me is the enjoyment of catching up with friends and going to Sydney to join in all the celebrations and watch all the boats in the harbour, its a day to “rejoice” and give thanks that we live in the best Country in the world!

What’s On in Sydney For full details including running times, visit

Sydney CBD The Australia Day celebrations in Sydney are befitting of Australia’s oldest and biggest city with events and activities spread far and wide, on the beaches, in the backyards, in the sky and in parks, it’s a day to celebrate in true Aussie style. What’s on Sdyney CBD: – Woggan-ma-gule Morning Ceremony – GIO Oz Day 10K – Sample Sydney – Hyde Park Main Stage – NRMA Motorfest® – NRMA Village – Vintage Bus Service – Darling Harbour Australia Day Spectacular and Fireworks

Sydney Harbour Basking under blue skies on Sydney Harbour is an absolutely magnificent way to spend Australia Day. Whether you’re on land or out on the water, you can enjoy the spectrum of events on display for all. What’s On Sydney Harbour: – Captains Briefing - 12 JANUARY 2012 – Body Science Great Aussie Swim – Ferrython – Best Dressed Vessels Competition – Awesome Forces - Australian Army 21 Gun Salute – Awesome Forces - Search & Rescue Display, Farm Cove – Awesome Forces - Search & Rescue Display, Athol Bay – 176th Australia Day Regatta – Awesome Forces - RAAF F/A-18 Hornet – Awesome Forces - Red Berets splash down – Sydney Ports Jazz on the Water Concert – Tiger Moths

Hyde Park The lush surrounds of Hyde Park is the setting for a huge celebration in the city. What’s On Hyde Park Main Stage: – The BIG Telly – Kids Playground – Have A Go Sport – Lord Mayor’s Citizenship Ceremony

s ’ t le T RAVEL

choose your adventure!

Bald Hill

South America page 14

Off the beaten track page 16

Beyond London page 20

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great Australian scenic road trips P A RT 1 Highway 1: Grand Pacific Drive to Batemans Bay


ome and experience Wollongong’s spectacular coastal drive - Grand Pacific Drive, between Sydney to Wollongong and beyond. Grand Pacific Drive begins at the Royal National Park which is the second oldest National Park in the world. Enjoy driving through coastal rainforests, hire a row boat and take a picnic on the Port Hacking River, visit picturesque beaches or enjoy some of the many great walking trails. The Royal National Park ends at the point where Grand Pacific Drive meets Bald Hilla magnificent lookout south to Wollongong. From here, watch the hang gliders and para gliders or marvel at the spot where Lawrence Hargrave first took flight. Grand Pacific Drive then heads south through coastal villages and along cliff hugging roads which span right above the South Pacific Ocean. Traverse along the magnificent Sea Cliff Bridge- the 665 metre over-theocean bridge which opened in December 2005. These coastal villages in the northern section of the drive are famous for their unspoilt beaches and rock pools, unique art and crafts, great fishing and surfing spots and many terrific cafes and restaurants. From here, Grand Pacific Drive makes its way into the bustling city of Wollongong, offering countless adventure activities, great beaches and shopping, fantastic local restaurants and cafes, golf courses, art galleries and more. Wollongong is also a great place to stay with a huge mix of options from international hotel brands to quaint and unique B&B’s to backpacker accommodationWollongong has something to offer any traveller. From here the drive takes you through to the beautiful coastal towns of Shellharbour and Kiama and ends in the spectacular Shoalhaven region. From here, experience Grand Pacific Drive’s ‘beyond’, to the Southern Highlands, Batemans Bay and greater South Coast and then on to Canberra. Grand Pacific Drive is also a great ‘appetiser’ to the Sydney to Melbourne coastal drive. Grand Pacific Drive now has themed directional and reassurance signage along the entire length of the drive. These new 12

signs create a more interesting and meaningful experience, guiding you through the significance of each region.

Grand Pacific Drive must see, must do: • Be adventurous and tandem hang glide with an instructor at Bald Hill • Visit Symbio Wildlife Park and see Australian wildlife up close • Hop on a Harley Davidson and cruise along Grand Pacific Drive • Feel the adrenaline pumping at NSW’s only beach skydive! • Try one of Wollongong’s many great seafood restaurants and cafes • Visit Five Islands Brewery Australia’s largest micro brewery - and taste some locally made beer • Feeling energetic? Explore Wollongong via the City Walk map, or cycle along the beachside cycle way around Flagstaff Hill

• Visit Nan Tien Temple, the largest Buddhist Temple in the Southern Hemisphere • Relax on one of Wollongong’s 17 patrolled beaches • Take in panoramic views from Mt Keira Lookout • Take in some of Wollongong’s mining history with a visit to the historic village of Mt Kembla or visit Australia’s Industry World • Go scuba diving or snorkelling at Bushrangers Bay, Bass Point • Take a scenic flight over the region from the Illawarra Regional Airport or if you’re game, an aerobatic flight with Southern Biplanes • Visit Jamberoo Action Park, the largest water theme park in NSW • Enjoy the view of the ocean from the treetops at the Illawarra Fly Treetop Walk (now offering Sunrise Walks) • Visit the famous Kiama Blowhole and Minnamurra

Rainforest • Sample some fantastic wine and great food at Crooked River Winery and Coolangatta Estate Winery And ‘Beyond’ - must see, must do; • Experience the Illawarra Fly Tree Top Walk • Watch the playful dolphins and whales in Jervis Bay • Hop on board a high speed boat in Jervis Bay for a thrilling adventure experience

• Drop in at one of the Southern Highlands three waterfalls: Fitzroy, Carrington or Belmore Falls • Spend some time in Canberra celebrating our proud sporting achievements and explore our unique political history or enjoy visiting the cool climate wineries au

let’s T R AV E L Planning to take in the essential European cities in 2012? W

hether you’ve never been to Europe before and are looking for a place to begin, or it’s your tenth trip and you want to combine all your favourite destinations, this essential itinerary links all your favourite cities with rail travel in between so you can see and experience more of the countries you visit. What better place to start than Amsterdam? With a historic centre encircled by UNESCO World Heritage listed canals and narrow, 17th century merchants houses, few capitals have a more appealing cityscape. There is a seriously eclectic mix of museums here too, covering subjects from Van Gogh to Vodka. The Anne Frank House is an absolute must, even if you haven’t read the famous diary of a Jewish teenager whose family went into hiding during Nazi occupation. Spend a couple of days here before catching the train to Paris. The Thalys service runs at speeds of up to 320km per hour, connecting Amsterdam with Paris in 3 hours, 15 minutes. Paris is one of the most visited cities in the world and after just an hour here, the reasons become abundantly clear. From regal Haussmann boulevards to winding cobbled streets, you could spend days just following your feet and soaking up the atmosphere. But this city is more than just a feast for the eyes; there’s a cultural smorgasbord of world famous art galleries and ultra modern museums too. And when you’re worn out with sightseeing, there’s not much to match dinner at a Left Bank brasserie. Next, it’s time to head south. Catch a high speed TGV through France’s rolling countryside and pretty villages towards the Alps and Zurich. Zurich is the cultural hub of Switzerland with a German speaking population and a truly stunning location at the northern tip of a glacial lake overlooking distant mountains. Drink in the Alpine air with a walk along the banks of the River Limmat or visit one of Zurich’s fabulous museums. The Kunsthaus Zurich is one of Europe’s most prestigious art galleries offering a permanent collection of works from the Middle Ages to the present day. Don’t forget to try fondue or raclette in the lovely medieval Niederdorf district. One of the most spectacular rail routes in Europe is the journey

TAIWAN LANTERN FESTIVAL A MUST SEE By David Rowlands (the writer was a guest of Advance Olympic Travel)


through the Gotthard Pass. The line from Zurich to Venice goes up into the Alps, climbing to a height of 2100 metres above sea level. Travel around hairpin bends, through dramatic valleys, over bridges and along steep precipices where the train hugs the sides of the mountains before descending into the lovely Swiss canton of Ticino. From here, the journey runs around Lake Lugano and across the Swiss/ Italian border at Chiasso towards Milan. A quick change in Milan on to a local train service brings you quickly to Venice. The entrance into Venice by train has to be among the most impressive in the world. Cross the rail bridge from Mestre station and watch the churches and palazzos sweep majestically into view across the bright blue waters of the Venetian lagoon. Santa Lucia Station couldn’t be much more central either. As soon as you emerge, you are confronted with the hustle and bustle of the famous Grand Canal. Get lost amongst the narrow labyrinthine streets here, away from the crowds at St Marks Square. Discover your favourite canalspanning bridge, enjoy a drink in a quiet campo and shop in the street markets of Cannaregio. Seeing Venice from the water either from a private gondola or vaporetto is well worth doing, as is a trip out to other islands in the lagoon such as Murano, famous for its beautiful glass. After time to explore, leave Venice behind and travel down by train through the stunning landscapes of Tuscany to Rome. Rome may no longer be the capital of the world, but its history has shaped the continent of Europe and the vestiges of empires can be seen

literally everywhere in this buzzing, fascinating metropolis. Ancient monuments are so widespread that some don’t even have markers – others form traffic islands around which chaotic cars and Vespas whizz in seemingly indifferent and uncontrolled frenzy. Iconic landmark monuments not to be missed include the Colosseum, the Forum, the Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, St Peters Cathedral in the Vatican City and the stunning Sistine Chapel, amongst other wonders. Make sure you try an Italian gelato before you leave, whatever the weather! This itinerary can also be easily travelled in reverse as Amsterdam and Rome make great start and finish points. Both are major rail hubs with connections to all major European cities and have international airports with a wide choice of carriers. They are also both used as major hubs for cruises so you could easily combine a Mediterranean cruise or a European River cruise with your rail holiday. This is a suggested itinerary called ‘Essential Europe’ from Railbookers, a specialist travel company based in Sydney and London who offer tailor made holidays throughout Europe combining hand-picked hotels, train travel and sightseeing options. You can pick and choose from a wide range of sightseeing options in each destination as your tailor made itinerary is designed just for you. Railbookers’ well-travelled consultants will help you put together your perfect tour to meet your specific needs. Stop where you like, for as long as you like and begin and end your journey wherever you want to. For more details and other sample itineraries go to www.railbookers. or call on 1300 938 534.

hoever decided to title the Taiwan Lantern Festival with such a simple moniker was either a master of the understatement or had no idea just how big this event would become. Quite frankly, this humble description doesn’t do proper justice to what is surely one of the world’s most stunning installations of light. It’s Taiwan’s answer to New Year’s Eve on Sydney Harbour, as it is the first festival after the start of the Lunar New Year. Only their version goes for much longer than our half an hour of intense skypainting. It’s a fortnight-long gala that will leave your mouth agape. There’s a serious ‘wow’ factor in it, on several levels. The first comes from the sheer scale of the event. Since 2001, it has been held annually in different towns and you can’t help but feel that each time, the host city is trying to better the previous festival and set a new benchmark for those that follow… just like the Olympic Games. The 2011 instalment was staged in Miaoli County, on the western side of Taiwan. It drew people from all over the island, not to mention a few curious Aussie tourists. No visitor could fail to be impressed by the kaleidoscope of light they are greeted with. Tens of thousands of lanterns of all descriptions make up the display, however it’s the imaginations of the creators that proves to be just as noteworthy as the sheer magnitude of the festival. This is a true community event, with input from all aspects of Taiwanese society, from professional artists to school children. There is a strong family feel to the whole thing, both in the contributions of the lanterns themselves and those viewing them. The site at Miaoli was not only a sea of light but of people as well. There could’ve been a quarter of a million people there on the night we visited and even though the site can get a little cosy due to the vast number of patrons, the level of goodwill and friendliness was remarkable. There was no pushing and shoving, as one might expect. Everyone moved around in an orderly and civil fashion that was enough to restore your faith in humanity. The Taiwanese are lovely people and were especially thrilled that a group from Down Under was prepared to make the nine-hour direct flight with the re-vitalised China Airlines to witness a spectacle they hold so dear to their hearts. The crisp night air and easy-going atmosphere is punctuated by a dazzling fireworks and laser show that has every neck craning upwards. There is no shortage of other reasons for visiting Taiwan. After all, it wasn’t formerly known as Formosa- meaning ‘beautiful island’ in Portuguese- for nothing. It’s a lush, vibrant land that has enjoyed great prosperity over the past half a century. It is dotted with beautiful lakes, mountains and most famously, inviting hot springs. Sun Moon Lake, in the heart of the island, has to be one of the most gorgeous places in Asia and is home to a resort of unparalleled opulence, The Lalu, which is rated in the world’s top 50. See Advance Olympic Travel’s ad following on page 14.

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Experience Essential South America with Travel Directors

Paris: heaven for a week


(or a month!)

outh America is often the last continent that people visit, yet it is without doubt the world’s most exciting with awe-inspiring scenery, vibrant culture and a rich historical tapestry. With more than twenty years experience in designing unique adventures to diverse destinations, Essential South America is definitely one of the most sparkling jewels in Travel Directors’ crown. This continent of superlatives – the largest jungle, the longest river, the widest waterfalls and the longest mountain chain in the world - is a feast for the senses. The 32-day itinerary embraces all of the major highlights of Brazil, Peru, Bolivia and Argentina starting in fabulous Rio de Janeiro lying in the shadow of the magnificent statue of Christ the Redeemer. Travel Directors’ highly experienced tour leaders Juan Carlos and Manny Yanez – the irrepressible Peruvian brothers – have led this breath-taking adventure for many years. Both acknowledged authorities on Incan history and civilisation, they are multilingual with huge enthusiasm and


humour. Major highlights of this Adventure of a Lifetime include magical Machu Picchu, the Amazon rainforest, the fantastic pre-Incan ruins of Tiahuanaco and a helicopter ride over spectacular Iguassu Falls. Travel Directors have five departures in 2012: 29 Mar, 3 May, 7 Jun, 2 Aug and 4 Oct. Essential South America is priced at $15,997 – but

for a limited time Travel Directors are offering an unbeatable early bird saver; book and pay in full by 31 January 2012 and save $1000 per person. This special also applies to Cuba & Mexico, 26-days departing 26 October 2012 and priced at $13,997 before discount. Travel Directors Ph 1300 856 661


The Legendary Trans-Siberian & Himalayan Express


orth Prize w o up t


! 14,597


for weekly rental

They are the world’s greatest train journeys – the longest and the highest – and you could win your trip free of charge! Simply book on a 2012 Travel Directors’ Legendary Trans-Siberian or On Himalayan Express tour and if you have never “First- e T travelled with Travel Directors before AND you travels imer” pay in full by 31 January 2012, you’ll go into a draw free! to win back the cost of your tour. This prize is worth up to $14,597!!

The Legendary Trans-Siberian – 27/28 day tours priced at $13,947 The Himalayan Express – 25 days priced at $14,597

All have fully equipped kitchens, three with washing machine. Queen or single beds. Short walk to metro, bus and Eiffel Tower.

2012 Hey! Boomers SPECIAL

Price includes: all flights & taxes, all accom in excellent hotels (twin share), all ground transport and transfers, all meals except on trains (very cheap), expert guides, tour escort, all sightseeing and entrance fees, visas and courier fees, ALL TIPS AND GRATUITIES. Not inc: insurance and personal spending.

$1000 per week till 30 April. Book and pay in Australia and get insider tips from owners.

Call 1300 856 661 Lic. No. 9TA 00295


Four one bedroom apartments in central Paris. Ideal for a couple, can sleep up to 4.

Call John 02 9387 3899

f you are tired of poky Paris hotel rooms and long for a week living like a local, chances are you’ve thought about renting an apartment. Jo and John Hempton certainly did, only to discover some apartments were just as poky and worse, inaccessible. “One day when we’d lugged our cases up four flights of narrow stairs John looked at me and said ‘We can do better than this,” says Jo with a smile. That’s just what they did. Ten years and four apartments later, Jo and John are confident what they are doing really fills the bill for retired couples like them. “We chose our apartments carefully, three in the 7th arrondissement (Eiffel Tower, Musee d’Orsay) and one in the swish 16th (Bois de Boulogne, Roland Garros Tennis Centre). They had to be in safe areas, the local market had to be walking distance, and there had to be a lift, lots of sun and quiet. “ “Most of our guests are repeats these days, and they have a wonderful time shopping for seasonal produce and eating some of their meals at home, “ Jo says. “We head to the organic supermarket the moment we arrive because John likes his porridge every day – and you can’t get that in a French hotel.” Nothing beats making all your arrangements right here, in English. You leave with your doorkeys and instructions, and head straight for your apartment: no waiting for check-in at 2pm when your plane arrived at 7 a.m.

let’s T R AV E L A Slow Tours Traveller’s Tale W

hen you get a cancer diagnosis you suddenly realise that heaven could be just that little bit closer than it was. Sometimes you can get to find a little bit of heaven whilst on earth, but breathing above it. That is good because you can be alive to experience it and share this experience with others. You can’t do that when you are dead. Where am I going with this? Approx 133 metres up towards the clouds in The Eiffel Tower drinking French champagne surrounded by gorgeous male French waiters, I was in heaven. I had a wonderful partner Ray there to share the magnificent view outside and the ambience inside. Quite surreal, Paris is a wonderful city. You can sit in a cafe just people watching for hours; men and women cycling by dressed in suits some wearing stilettos (usually the women), smart cars in threes parking on or very close to pedestrian crossings, walkers carrying a baguette under one arm and a bicycle helmet under the other. There are not many obese people in Paris or France generally.

Having studied this in depth during our stay I have worked out how they stay slim. 1. Drink your coffee or tea without milk. 2. Enjoy a good wine with meals. 3. Have a serving of cheese and green salad between main course and dessert, and last but not least 4. Walk a lot, cycle more than drive and climb stairs. I shall miss the stairs! A week in the Loire Valley with Carol and Slow Tours (check out her site on the internet at www. was perhaps the highlight of this strenuous voyage for us. We certainly cracked it finding Slow Tours and Carol. Picture this. Your accommodation is in a 16th century chateau. Your room is the size of the average 1 bedroom apartment, your window shutters open out over hectares of beautiful lawns, gardens and wooded forest. You look towards the left of the wooded forest to see a magnificent archway designed by Leonardo Di Vinci. In your room the walls are covered in an elegant, patterned linen. An enormous fireplace adorns one end of this elaborate room, two majestic chairs, one either side

~ Story contributed by Jenny & Ray from Victoria

haven’t ridden a bike for 50 years and with the help of Carol you hire a bike, and on the advice of the bike hirer, you, in the company of the others on the tour, set off on a leisurely 2 hour ride along the river and through acres of vineyards, perhaps stopping for a light lunch and glass of wine en route. of an old but beautiful wooden table, its matching twin dresser in the corner beside the double doors leading out. However just so you don’t do it too tough, there is a magnificent ensuite bathroom where Ray and I (separately) have experienced the best showers of our lives. It wasn’t a 16th century shower. Actually the lift that carries you up to your room, should you wish to avoid the grand staircase or servant wooden stairs was not 16th century either (sigh). I am sure that we kept fit just with the cross country walk across the room to the bathroom during the night, without needing to venture out to the lawns and forests. Actually this brings me to a highlight of this week for my partner Ray. Picture this, you

Sadly I couldn’t go because of my shoulders, which are now heaps better (it’s the good food and wine and exercise), so Carol stayed and kept me company and we had a leisurely few hours whilst the others enjoyed their little ride! I must say at this point we had the most wonderful travel companions - Chris from Adelaide, Adele and Ian from Brisbane, Rhonda and Jill from Victoria. Now back to the bikers. The 2 hour leisurely ride ended up being over 5 hours, 45 kms and up many

steep ridges and along many streets of a number of small villages. Ray pulled out of this mini Tour de France after 23kms and 3 falls. He was okay and a bit sore for a few days but glad he did it. I don’t think he is planning another ride in the near or far future. As for Chris and Adele they were absolutely exhausted following a further 20+ kms and getting lost after we picked up Ray. Ian fared better being a fit and regular biker and marathon type person. However these amazing people became very close after such a shared experience. I could go on here about what we saw (Royal chateaux, Leonardo da Vinci’s chateau and museum, the famous Royal Abbaye de Fontevraud, the history (especially Eleanor of Aquitaine, the French Kings and intriguing stories of their wives and mistresses), but Ray and I will miss the plane if I continue. Just a quick thought: check out the Notice Board on Carol’s website – the one about the Loire Valley – and her description of the (supposed to be) bike ride. Both Ray and I had a good chuckle over that.

Italian Lakes and Riviera

Ever dreamt of an authentic French holiday where you could truly immerse yourself in the sights, tastes and culture of a quaint local village?

5 nights in the stunning lakes district of northern Italy and 4 on the beautiful Mediterranean coast. 27h May – 5th June (9 nights) A$4,680 shared • A$4,950 single

Provence Paris

Brest Quimper

Enjoy a picnic in the rolling green hills of the Luberon, visit the Count of Monte Cristo’s residence and taste the region’s signature bouillabaisse.

Rennes Nantes

5th – 12th June (7 nights) A$3,690 shared • A$3,950 single

Fr a nce Bordeaux Monaco Aix-en-Provence

Dordogne Prehistoric caves, spectacular limestone cliffs, medieval villages and castles, narrow gorges and tumbling waterfalls, the delightful Dordogne valley will enchant you.

Slow Tours France provides intimate getaways for up to 14 people with tours of France’s most charming, out-of-the-way towns. If you’re after a genuine vacation experience, without the rush of the tourist crowds, let Slow Tours France show you the real France.

18th – 25th June (7 nights) A$3,690 shared • A$3,950 single

For more information call [08] 8370 3125 or to receive Slow Tours newsletters, visit our website at


F r a n c e

Not far from Bordeaux in the heart of a region known for its wines and good food, this region will delight the gourmet palate. 25th June – 2nd July (7 nights) A$3,690 shared • A$3,950 single

Slow Tours Pty Ltd PO Box 1265, Blackwood, SA 5051 (08) 8370 3125

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Off The Beaten Track F EATURE The Great Eco Adventure

Take a 4WD TagG


ustralian Eco Adventures has been providing complete luxury small group eco tours across Australia for over 20 years, and has continually set the benchmark for first class itineraries, guides and vehicle comfort. Total travel packages offer a complete eco tourism experience, from stunning heritage listed tropical rain forests and endless deserted white sand beaches to forays into the wild Australian outback. Australian Eco Adventures have itineraries ranging from a few days taking in the best of Sydney & New South Wales through to a full Australian package which will take you the width and breadth of this beautiful country! The next featured tour is a 4 day adventure that follows the Historic Convict Trail. You will explore sections of the Great North Road, built by convict labour often working in irons between the years 1826 and 1836. The journey features picturesque towns and villages, exploring the brilliant engineering works created by hundreds of convicts and learning of the history of the settlement of the region. Some of the highlights include a scenic morning river cruise in the tranquil waters of the Hawkesbury River a visit to the rustic village of Wisemans Ferry and surrounding national parks while sampling the fabulous local produce and fine wines.

A li E id Australian Eco Ad Adventures pride themselves on offering a unique travel experience for those who want to leave all the organisation to someone else, including arranging all tours and accommodation. They have something for everyone, so steer clear of the crowds and head off the beaten track and enjoy an experience of a lifetime! For more information on other great tours and adventures log onto au or phone 02 9971 2402

reat Divide Tours has been in the business of providing 4WD tag-along tours longer than most in Australia being established by well known 4WD identity Vic Widman in 1990. We asked Vic what makes a tag-along tour so attractive to his customers. Tag Along tours provide the safety of travelling in numbers with a guide that knows the outback like the back of his hand. It is our job to take care of the planning of the trip, we make sure you visit all the best and little known places and we make sure you have a great time whilst doing it. Your guide not only provides a running commentary on the history and flora of the country through which you are travelling but is on hand to assist you if something is amiss with your vehicle. If our guide can’t fix it with his bush mechanic skills you can rest assured that being equipped with all the latest satellite and GPS tracking devices he will soon arrange help. Fortunately breakdowns are rare and the whole tag-along experience is one of seeing magnificent country that is remote and for some a little daunting. There is no doubt that travelling with others who have been there before dispels the nervous anxiety that might otherwise prevent you from seeing some of the best locations in Australia. A 4WD tag-along tour is no road trip either, it is a fair dinkum four wheel drive odyssey. Some of our most popular tours take people across some of the most remote country not only in Australia but in the World. My company, Great Divide Tours, has led over 60 crossings of the famed Simpson Desert, this is the largest parallel sand dune desert in the world and you can easily cross it with our knowledge and guidance. The Canning Stock Route in Western Australia is known as the longest and most remote track of any kind in the World. We allow 20 days to drive its entire length and if you think about that, 20 days of travel without passing through any town or seeing any made road or power pole, you begin to realise just how remote Australia still is. But you don’t have to conquer the real outback to participate in a 4WD tag-along tour, our most popular trip is a one day tour of Stockton Beach just north of Newcastle. This again is a fascinating and beautiful location just 2 hours from the bustling metropolis of Sydney. Yet it holds a mystique and attraction

Australian family owned and operated for over 20 years • Genuine small groups of 16 or less • Quality comfortable 4WD and 2WD mini coaches • Experts in great Australian Experiences • All accommodated with ensuite bathrooms • Tours include most meals, morning and afternoon teas THE OUTBACK EXPLORER • Well thought out itineraries highlight the best Australia has to offer with both “must see” 28 Jul – 05 Aug 2012 (9 Nights) and “off the beaten track” sights • Fully escorted with reliable, Sydney to Alice Springs friendly professional driver/guide. 10 day adventure is a true Outback Experience... AIL R T T from NSW, to QLD to Alice Springs; Special focus IC V N O THE C Diamantina National Park sweeps across highly Trail t ic 12 nv 20 Co ar M ic 12 - 15 ws the Histor weathered sandstone ranges down to the floodplains by llo fo ilt e bu , ur nt ad t North Ro 4 day adve of the Diamantina River, across Mitchell grass plains ecting ns of the Grea io nn ct co se 36 g in 18 or expl n 1826 and to dunefields. On or off the beaten track, all roads us ee s tw ke be ta y ur ne bo convict la lley. Our jour Va lead to unexpected adventures & unforgettable er e nt th g Hu in e or th villages, expl Sydney with experiences as we explore the stunning rocky ds of que towns & re es nd ur hu ct pi by h d throug outcrops & unique wetlands of this works create of t g in en er em ne ttl gi brilliant en ory of the se region........................$4285pp/ts....................$567ss ng of the hist .$240ss ni ... ar ... le ... & ... ts ... ic ... conv 88pp/ts ..............$14 the region......

Ph: 02 9971 2402 16

h ddraws people l bback k time i d time i i that and again. Once again venturing up there on your own without the knowledge of how to drive the soft sand, avoid the steep drop offs and where to find the history that is scattered along this pristine coast is beyond most sensible baby boomer. All of our guides are also qualified four wheel drive instructors, we happen to have the most respected and sought after 4WD training venue in Australia, so we are on hand to pass on our knowledge and skills to make sure you have one of the your best days ever. Yes, it is that good or at least that is what my customers tell me. A 4WD tag-along tour means that you are part of the experience. In a tag-along tour you


n - 3 Jul 2012 (15 Nights) The Corner Co untry is the re gion of widered sand dune open spaces s, big blue sk , ies stretching beyond Brok north & west en Hill, teem ing with so addition to th much to see. e beauty of th In e unique land of attractions scap reflect the Ab original and Eu e, a number culture or di ropean histor vers y, fence to hist ity of our region. From th oric mining e wild dog to wns, from pl explorers ca mped to rem aces where arkable uniq wildlife...the ue plants an Lake Eyre an d d Cooper Cree much to see. k basins have Our 16 day jo so urney will follo our ancestor w the paths of s & learn of their lives in beautiful pa this remarka rt of our coun bly tr y. We will landscapes, see stunning visit historic towns, marve that is Lake Ey l at the beau re & visit the ty magnificent Fl National Park inders Ranges ................$57 95pp/ts......... ...........$769 ss

let’s T R AV E L Along-Tour with Great Divide Tours rremote locations I could find. We will be sspending a lot of time with the true owners oof Arnhem Land who will gladly share their way of life with us. The scenery is absolutely w aamazing too and one of the most surreal eexperiences I’ve ever enjoyed will be relived aas we camp on a pristine beach with a local ccommunity who will entertain us around the gglowing embers of a perfect campfire as we

cook our freshly caught fish. A 4WD tag-along tour may be just what you were looking for or perhaps you’ve always wanted to be like the Leyland Brothers and explore Australia but didn’t know where to start, I know we can help you in this respect. For more information visit

4WD Tag-Along Tours Travel with the leaders in tag-along tours, established in 1990 Travel in company with experienced and knowledgeable guides who take care of all the planning for you whilst you enjoy the challenge of the drive, snap up the scenery and soak in the pristine wilderness.

actually ll ddo the h ddriving. i i O Our clients li either i h own their own four wheel drive or we can arrange the hire of a fully kitted out four wheel drive for you to drive. You follow your guide who is in his or her own vehicle and is providing commentary over the UHF radio. There may be up to 8 vehicles in your convoy, all people with similar interests enjoying an experience that they know they would otherwise not be prepared to explore. I have to say that many of our clients have made lifelong friends on our tours. Most 4WD tag-along tours involve camping and cooking under the stars. You can either join a fully catered tour or a self catered tour. Great Divide Tours offers self

catered this d tours as I bbelieve li hi kkeeps the h cost of the tour to within reach and promotes the social aspect of the trip. Naturally we have a camp fire each evening to sit around and either solve the world’s problems or learn of new places from your experienced guides. Some of our weekend trips are fully accommodated with dinner and brekkie thrown in, so if you really are not into the whole camping in the bush scenario, these trips may be just right. On the extended safaris, you will be provided with extensive notes on how to prepare your vehicle and yourself for the adventure of a life time. Using my 30 years of outback travel experience it is my objective to ensure that you have the best time of your life on our tours. Our many thousands of very satisfied customers are testimony to the great time that you will have whilst travelling with us. In 2012 we will be conducting tours into Arnhem Land, I have been planning this tour for the past 2 years and spent several weeks up there in 2011 learning about the area and arranging access into some of the most

We have day and weekend tours to:- Stockton Beach, the Blue Mountains, Barrington Tops, Brindabella ranges and the South Coast hinterland (NSW) We also have short safaris to:- The Snowy Mountains, the Victorian High Country, the Darling River and the Corner Country/Birdsville Our outback safaris include:- The Simpson Desert, Cape York, Canning Stock Route, the Kimberley and now Arnhem Land

For more details contact Vic Widman at Great Divide Tours on 02 9913 1395 or visit

Look for us on facebook!

De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 17

Off The Beaten Track F EATURE Off the beaten track with a “Free Spirit” I

nnovation certainly has not come easy over these last years. A lot of looking at every, which, way there is to develop R & D – in order to see how to make change! Listening to ‘It will never work’, ‘things are fine as they are,’ and ‘why re-invent the wheel?’ etc. etc. Free Spirit kept pushing forward and focusing on design, as they believe ‘design is the powerhouse for change.’ If innovation was the core of every organisations growth strategy – it would certainly make a difference – it did for us. Thinking outside the box or even inventing a new one – had to be the criteria, in order to deliver this innovation. Of course there has to be a ‘need’ for the change, in the environment. This happened when the global pricing of fuel took hold and the ever increasing vehicle costs became apparent to all, thus highlighting the need for lighter selfsustainable caravans. Not just an average caravan

but a strong and durable caravan – that can tackle the glorious outback this amazing country has to offer. As Baby Boomers start to retire (and will do for the next 15 years) this has led to an increased interest and waiting list for these caravans. With ‘Innovation at the forefront’ the Australian Institute of Commercialisation interviewed Free Spirit’s Director, Elaine Foster about the company’s R & D and the innovation that had arisen from this. The AIC award only 3 companies in Australia a scholarship each year. The Leadership in Innovation is held in Sydney by the Hargraves Institute and the AIC offered this to Elaine Foster who was pleased to accept on behalf of Free Spirit. This brought together approximately 20 companies from across Australia who were acknowledging innovation in their own fields. It seems caravan build has not changed in over 50


Dometic Medi Hatch

50mm fibreglass roof sandwich ppanel

Air Command AirCon - Sparrow TV Aeriel Saturnn

Fiama 45 Awning

Dometic Double Glazed Tinted windows Dual Integrated Privacy/Fly screen Blinds. Innovative design

FREE SPIRIT Custom made Heavy Duty Stone Guard

D035 Coupling Heavy Duty Jockey Wheel

Water tight 1.2m m Tunnel Boot oot 6082 T6 Structural Aluminium RHS full length Chassis with 25 year warranty

Electric Ele Elec ec steps - Techno External Tablee

25mm fibreglass side walls sandwich panel with aluminium frame ‘in-laid’

Cooper S/T Discoverer Tyres

years bbut ddesign i andd iinnovation i are extremely l important to Free Spirit which is why the mission statement of Free Spirit, from its conception was: ‘Transformation via innovation’ in the Design & Build of the most durable & lightweight Off Road caravan – creating for the customer a most ‘Improved and Advanced product.’ “This was the mantra in our minds each day”, said Elaine, as Free Spirit progressed from building aluminium internal cabinetry to designing and building an aluminium chassis. A unique chassis without a weld of the A frame, (Patented Design) the design eliminates any weakness; at the same time allows a change of material from the usual steel to the use of high grade aluminium in a box frame for strength and lightness. This was the foundation upon which was then added a honeycombe composite for the floor replacing the usual wooden floors. (Making wood rot a demon of the past for this company!) The innovation did not stop there as a further patented design saw the development of a unique walling system: a vacuumed bonded fibreglass sandwich panel within which their signatory aluminium wall frame is actually inlaid. (Unique to Free Spirit). A lot of R & D – but a fantastic outcome as all of these new design procedures created a totally new product. “I am proud of the Free Spirit Company for its focus on Design and Innovation and was chuffed to bits to be offered the scholarship to Leadership in Innovation,” says Elaine – Free Spirit Director. So, thinking outside the square or in this case finding a way to build a new square: simply revolutionised the outback caravan industry overnight!

DIRECT4WD FREE SPIRIT’S unique design and build has produced a 16’ Off Road Caravans that weight just 1.6 Tonne Tare. Self sustainable inclusive shower/toilet, solar panels and more. The lightweight design means fuel savings and lower cylinder engine to tow! Strength and durability in built. Aluminium patented design chassis with a no weld in the A Frame and fibre glass wall panels with the FREE SPIRIT signatory aluminium framing ‘in-laid within the fibreglass’. A first in the industry and unique to FREE SPIRIT. FREE SPIRIT have manufactured their internal cabinetry out of aluminium – light, strong and long lasting. (No more wood rot). Craftsman finished kitchens to your chosen fascias i.e. Tassie Oak. Ever at the forefront with innovation FREE SPIRIT offer a ‘state of the arts 3 dimensional design system’ you see your dream caravan take shape in front of your eyes. All in all a tough, strong and durable off road caravan guaranteed to take you places others can’t reach.

You are welc com me on a Facttory y Tour!


34 Enterprise Street, Caloundra, QLD.

Canning Stock Route 23 Day Tag –A –Long Tour Departs Alice Springs 28th April THIS IS A TRIP EVERY REAL AUSIE SHOULD DO. ITS MORE THAN AN TRIP ...ITS A LIFE EXPERIENCE

Call: (08) 8952-3359 or 0408 485 641 Email:

let’s T R AV E L Let’s Travel... to the Central Coast I f you are seeking that place where you can get away from it all and just relax and enjoy a mix of rural and beachside lifestyle, then the NSW Central Coast is for you. The Central Coast consists of two shires, Gosford and Wyong and are located perfectly between Sydney and Newcastle. The Central Coast is a popular destination for holiday makers, with many people choosing to come back again and again. For the tourists there are many attractions to come and see. The Central Coast is so popular because you have many options available from seaside, rural, hinterland and city lifestyles. The region has many historical places to visit and tourists have been coming since the 1800’s. Accommodation is plentiful with many alternatives available from resorts, motels, apartments, hotels, bed and breakfasts, caravan parks and cabins. Quality restaurants and food venues are everywhere and for the wine lovers the Hunter Valley Wine Country is only about 45 minutes away. Come and visit the Central Coast, we know you will not be disappointed. provides you informative directories, featuring local activities and attractions, accommodation, tourism and hospitality sectors, entertainment guides, as wells as an extensive a - z listing businesses directory.

Must See & Must Do The Entrance As a tourist destination, The Entrance is a huge success, gauged by the tens of thousands of people who flock there annually to take holidays or a weekend stopover. There are many who choose to spend regular weekends at this serene coastal resort and many others who arrive just for a day trip or an impromptu escape. Once you have succumbed to the splendor of the town and accepted the magnificence of the surrounding waterways, you certainly won’t want to leave. Major attractions include the magnificent Tuggerah Lakes, pelican feeding daily at

Something for everyone at Central Coast Holiday Parks


entral Coast Holiday Parks offer a unique holiday experience. The Holiday Parks are set across four diverse locations; Budgewoi, Canton Beach, Norah Head and Toowoon Bay. The Parks’ prime locations offer the best of the lakeside and beachside haven that is the Central Coast. Lie back and enjoy the shady serenity in the midst of the paperbark trees at Budgewoi or kick up some serious spray at the beach at Norah Head.

3.30pm, pristine surf beaches, boat hire, fishing, markets, entertainment, bike paths, shopping and so much more. Accommodation venues are plentiful and varied in style. Great place for families. Website: Terrigal Famous for it’s amazing boutique shopping, upmarket restaurants and cafes and first class entertainment, Terrigal is a legendary Australian seaside village. Sunny street cafes offer relaxed outdoor eating during the day, and every evening a huge array of stylish restaurants serving an amazing range of international menus open their doors to cater for the locals and tourists who flock to Terrigal to cool off in the sea breezes. Terrigal town is positioned right on the surf beach, with a perfect north easterly aspect to capture the sun all day. Quality homes, apartments and villas nestle into the hillsides of a surrounding ring of protective tree covered slopes. Meandering tree lined streets find their way down to the town centre and beach from the scenic higher points allowing residents to stroll easily into the village. Terrigal is the geographical heart of the Central Coast with spectacular coastal lookouts, national parks and a beautiful rural hinterland, all within a short drive. Multi screen cinemas, expansive shopping centres, golf courses and clubs are all available within a 5 km radius. Website: All information courtesy

The four Parks have recently undergone multi-million dollar upgrades. Recent upgrades to the Parks include the installation of: • Resort style pools at Norah Head and Toowoon Bay • Jumping pillows at all four parks for the young and young at heart • Outdoor amphitheatres at Norah Head and Toowoon Bay; where visitors can gather and watch a block buster under the stars Each of the four Parks offers free wireless internet access from various wi-fi hotspots. Nestled in the middle of beautiful waterways and numerous national parks, the Central Coast Holiday Parks offer the right mix of city and country to suit travellers and holiday makers from all over. All four Holiday Parks are just an hour and a half from Sydney and only fifty minutes from Newcastle.

De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 19

let’s T R AV E L London Calling Part 2: England & Beyond Story by Guest Travel Writer, George Kimpton


n the last issue we looked at what London has to offer and hopefully it was enough to whet your appetite for the UK. There is still loads of fascinating and beautiful places just waiting for you. My travels were with Insight Tours and I highly recommend them. They provide first class accommodation, food and loads of great information. Leaving London early on the first day we headed to Stratford on Avon, the birth place of Shakespeare. This lovely little town is pure old English with Tudor or Elizabethan shop fronts and houses. Considerable effort has gone into retaining the heritage feel and look with modern buildings either modified or non existent. This is the real old England we came to see. Insight dropped us at the edge of town with instructions of what to look for in our own time. It takes time to get used to this type of travel, where you are given lots of information and maps and allowed to enjoy at your leisure. . In Stratford we wandered the main street peeking into craft and cake shops loaded with goodies and enjoyed scones and cream. Next we wandered into Shakespeare’s home through the garden and kitchen and then upstairs to the bedrooms gaining an insight into how he lived. Moving on we travel to York and after checking in to our hotel, wandered down to “The Shambles” through the narrow cobbled streets to the York Minster. York Minster is England’s oldest medieval cathedral and a real treasure. Going inside, the beauty and craftsmanship overwhelms you, the memorial plaques are a lesson in history. We also found Dick Turpin’s grave in a tiny cemetery behind our hotel. Next stop is Durham and the Romanesque Cathedral and Castle. Parts of the Cathedral were used to shoot the Harry Potter films. Hadrian’s Wall appeared out of no where in the countryside and was something of an anticlimax for me. Nevertheless you could not help feeling part of Roman history as you climbed up on to this small stacked stone wall and surveyed the countryside beyond. At a brief stop at the border with Scotland we were welcomed by a Scottish piper before venturing 20

onward to the beautiful old city of Edinburgh. Again, practically no new style buildings here, but very substantial with gardens in the back of buildings. Here we visited the “Castle” – which dates back to the 15th Century. It dominates and stands guard over the city with impressive views in all directions. After a visit to the Royal Yacht “Britannia” [quite impressive but smaller than I expected], we arrive at St Andrews – the goal of most golfers with its famous golf course. Why on earth anyone would go here to play golf I don’t know – it’s cold and wet and windy! Onward through Dundee and Perth to Pitiochry and the Grampian Mountains and the magnificent landscapes of Scotland before stopping at the Laggan Country Hotel with haggis piped in, as is the tradition, for our main meal. The landscapes are magnificent with the craggy mountains and heather. Everywhere are “trampers” walking the trails. We travel through Glencoe and take a ferry trip across Loch Lomond, then a quick pass by Glasgow and into the Lakes District. A short stop at Gretna Green, with an actual wedding taking place outside the Old Blacksmith’s Shop,

was a feature of this trip before we entered the Lakes District. We were fortunate that our driver knew the roads along the lakes and treated us to the most magnificent scenery I have ever experienced. The Lakes District deserves its reputation and I can understand why the English love it. We stayed in Windermere at a hotel overlooking Lake Windermere and slipped back to Grassmere for a visit to this charming old town, well worth a visit. Next is a ferry ride down the lake and a trip on a heritage train to Backbarrow as we make our way to Chester. Fabulous scenery and landscapes. Chester is a beautiful old town

with Cathedral and Tudor buildings everywhere and loads of Roman history, including the remains of an old Amphitheatre plus a city wall that you can walk on. It is indeed a pleasure to have time to wander its streets and absorb the atmosphere. We visit Conwy and the Castle Walls built in 1283, which are magnificent and reek of history before finally arriving in Holyhead for the ferry ride to Ireland. Dublin is an interesting place to visit and is a mix of old and new but apart from the Castle has little to see. Although if you slip into the back streets there are some beautiful areas reminiscent of times past. The Castle is a beautiful old series of buildings that are used for

Government matters and dates from the 18th century. Now for the real Ireland! We head for Killarney – a beautiful and charming old town with many precincts and buildings but the real charm is out in the countryside with a trip around the Ring Of Kerry. The countryside is to dream for, rolling green hills and fabulous views including lakes and coastline plus fascinating old villages. This is the real Ireland! Heading back we deviate to Waterford and the Crystal Glass factory where a tour introduces us to the most exquisite glassware and how it is crafted. From here we travel on to Bath – a fabulously beautiful old city with its exquisite terraces and of course the Roman Baths. You could easily spend a day or two wandering this town with of course a visit to the Baths. I could babble on for pages about the beauty of the old villages and the country side but space does not permit so I encourage you to visit for yourselves! Pictured clockwise from top left: Conwy, Dick Turpin’s grave, Kerry in Ireland, Terrace Houses in Bath, The Temple Bar in Dublin.


Rock on! Dam Hotel rocks on! page 25

Annie is back! page 24

National Folk Festival page 23

De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 21

Rock on Jon A

ussie Rock legend, Jon English, and the young talented performers from the Central Coast of NSW who make up ‘The Rock Show’ are about to embark upon their last tour of the original show - visiting the nation’s capital cities in January and February 2012 before taking a well earned break. If you haven’t already seen this spectacular show, this will be your last chance and I’d urge you to grab it! The Rock Show is a tribute band to a whole bunch of different classic rock bands from the 60’s and 70’s, with everyone involved being a multi-talented artist, including Jon’s own eldest son – another Jonathan. Jon weaves his own brand of history and humour through the two-hour trip down memory lane, accompanied by the energy and enthusiasm of a young cast of singers and musicians, very reminiscent of how the music would have been performed by the original artists in their hey- day. Jon describes in his own words about The Rock Show. “It is not just a concert with a bunch of musicians it is a window to the past. Musically, we produce songs that people our age group can relate to and that we grew up with, but it’s a good night out for all generations.” “People come along to see it the first time not really knowing what to expect, but they invariably leave saying they are just blown away by the world-class young talent on stage”. Jon himself is a Baby Boomer, born in 1949 and migrating from England to

suburban Cabramatta west of Sydney at the age of 12. Before he graduated high school Jon had been a member of two bands – Zenith and Sebastian Hardie. In 1968 Sebastian Hardie was employed as Jonny O’Keefe’s backing band where Jon played rhythm guitar and sang. He’s been on the road performing ever since. Jon has many stage and screen credits to his name including Judas in Jesus Christ Superstar; the Gilbert and Sullivan trilogy Pirates of Penzance, The Mikado, and HMS Pinafore; Rasputin, Big River, his very successful rock opera ‘Paris’, and his own stage show ‘Buskers and Angels’. Add to this TV appearances in shows such as Number 96, Matlock, Division 4, Flying


JON ENGLISH and his astounding troupe of multi-talented artists in...

A spectacular tribute to the 60’s and 70’s



20 January • HER MAJESTY’S THEATRE Adelaide 21 January • BAROSSA ARTS & CONVENTION CENTRE SA 27 and 28 January • PALMS AT CROWN Melbourne 1 February • BUNBURY REGIONAL ENTERTAINMENT CENTRE WA 2 February • MANDURAH PERFORMING ARTS CENTRE WA 3 and 4 February • ASTOR THEATRE Perth 18 February • STATE THEATRE Sydney “The troupe blended theatre and rock exquisitely” Launceston Examiner “Brilliantly conceived and executed!” City News, Canberra 22

Doctors, the mini series Against the Wind as convict Jonathan Garrett, and of course who could forget Bobby Rivers in the very successful television sit-com ‘All Together Now’. His tally of Aria, Logie, AFI, MO, Green Room, and Countdown awards is matched by an impressive list of 16 music albums – including his latest album ‘Six Ribbons’, a double CD compilation of his greatest hits. The Rock Show’s story with Jon began back in 2009 when he was asked by the show’s co-creators Stuart Smith and Isaac Hayward to be part of a show to open the new Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre. It was meant to be for just four shows over two weekends. “I felt though” says Jon “that for the amount of work we’d put in and the way the audience responded, that it was just too good to stop there.” Putting his own money behind the show, Jon proceeded to take the cast – the youngest member at the time being just 16 – on tour. It was a resounding success, and over the past three years the show has been back to some venues three times by popular demand. “It was good when Joe finally turned 18 and he could legally come to the pub with us!” laughs Jon. Following the extensive “Last Hoorah” of The Rock Show Tour, Jon will be travelling to Tasmania in March 2012 in support of the Save the Tasmanian Devil Program, a cause for which he is Ambassador. He will be performing at the Princess Theatre in Launceston in a season of Jesus Christ Superstar, with proceeds from the charity preview going to the Save the Tasmanian Devil Program Appeal. Rather than performing the role of Judas which catapulted him to stardom in 1972 however, Jon will be appearing as

Pontius Pilate, which he describes as “A nice meaty role I can sing in my sleep!” Jon is very proud of his patronage of the devil Appeal. “They are Indigenous and they deserve to be preserved, we’ve had enough extinct species since we arrived (white man) in Australia and we have lost way too many.” Jon explained that the Tasmanian Devil has a unique threatening disease. “They have a facial tumour disease, and if we are not careful, within the next 15 years there will be none left in the wild. I’m really passionate about helping the cause.” As for the future? According to Jon, “Well, there IS a sequel to The Rock Show coming up, but I’ll be taking a break for a little while before going out on the road again. Unlike the others, I’m not exactly 22 anymore! Plus I have a book to write, and hopefully a stage show to go with it. I’m really looking forward to getting stuck into that.” In the meantime, Jon is certainly a dedicated and hard-working Australian performer who loves his Rock and Roll. He’ll not disappoint anyone, Jon English fan or not, who attends The Rock Show. Tickets to the Rock Show always sell out quickly, and the State Theatre in Sydney is not likely to be an exception. Bookings are available through au. Be sure to tell your friends and rellies in the other states as well so they don’t miss out on the best musical tribute show that Australia has ever witnessed when it comes to town. For further information on Jon and The Rock Show their website is www., or for Jon English

it’s ENTERTAINMENT The National Folk Festival 2012 T

he National Folk Festival has won the Australian Capital Tourism Awards in the Best Festival and Event Category for the third year (previous awards in 2008 and 2009). The award is welcome recognition of the growing reputation of this much-loved festival, which also won the National Qantas Award for Best Festival Event in 2009. To be held over Easter from 5-9 April at Exhibition Park in Canberra, the 2012 National Folk Festival is shaping up to be one of the best yet with a stellar line-up of some of the world’s leading musicians and performers. They include ARIA award-winners Katie Noonan (pictured right), with her group ‘Elixir’, Russian singer Zulya Kamalova with ‘The Children of the Underground’, Canadian doyen of Blues-Indian fusion Harry Manx, leading Scottish groups Shooglenifty and the Battlefield Band, English acoustic guitar maestro Stefan Grossman and renowned Canberra “disturbed folk” guitarist Jeff Lang. The legendary Irish singersongwriter Paul Brady, whose songs have been recorded by Tina Turner, Phil Collins and Bonnie Raitt amongst many others, is also making a welcome return to the Festival. The weekend tickets provide access to nearly 300 performances across the four days of the Festival. Diehard festivals fans can watch over 200 artists performing for more than 700 hours across the Easter weekend. Lovers of dance can enjoy a range of styles from Tango to Salsa, Morris, Irish and Greek, through to colonial, bush, Flamenco and Appalachian step clogging. If you want to learn new skills, you can participate in more than 130 workshops in musical instrumental playing, singing and a diverse range of traditional handcrafts and visual arts. If Fringe is your bag, you can kick back in the Majestic Fringe Festival Circus Tent for the full weekend and catch a myriad of colourful acts embracing everything from vaudeville spoken word to circus skills, comedy and gypsy music. The National Folk Festival is a great opportunity for up-and-coming young artists. The many Blackboard performance opportunities provide a space for young people to gain valuable performance experience. And the festival is a place to rub shoulders with established international artists. Headliners are encouraged to join local musicians in the popular Session Bar and late night venues –

its Labyrinth will explore the mystery of one of life’s shortest personal pilgrimages. The National Folk Festival was founded in Victoria in 1967 and has established itself as the leading folk festival in Australia and a world-class cultural event with an attendance of over 50,000 during the Easter weekend. Cheap Earlybird Tickets to the National are available and make the perfect Christmas gift – guaranteeing a memorable experience for friends and family:


The National Folk Festival are giving one lucky Hey! Boomers reader the chance to win 2 x Adult Season passes valued at $315 each. For full details please turn to “Up For Grabs” page 30

providing unmatched opportunities for young artists to look, listen and learn from world-renowned performers. At the 2011 Festival, renowned Australian artists such as Shane Howard and William Barton were spotted in some of the best sessions at the event jamming along with young up-and-coming musicians. It’s also the best festival experience anywhere with its all-weather permanent venues (warm, dry and great acoustics!), sealed roads, excellent camping facilities at Exhibition Park, reliably hot showers and clean amenities. The major concert venues have ample seating and there’s a spread of more intimate venues with delectable cuisine from around the world and a colourful array of high quality craft stalls showcasing the work of artisans from across the country. The National is a unique cultural experience that provides ‘time out of time’ with something inspiring for all age groups in a friendly family atmosphere. At the Children’s Festival kids can explore music making, fun and games –– with a dedicated children’s stage, music performances and workshops for all ages. The Festival village is a magical treat. 2012 will feature the Poetree – an artistic installation providing a venue for poets and writers to engage in impromptu verse and creative writing. The Enchanted Forest with




De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 23

The Stage Annie to light up Sydney’s Lyric Theatre from 29 December


he ever-popular Broadway musical Annie will light up Sydney’s Lyric Theatre from 29 December in an exciting new production produced John Frost. Returning to the role of New York ‘zillionaire’ Daddy Warbucks will be one of Australia’s greatest theatrical talents, Anthony Warlow, fresh from his success in the title role of the World Premiere of Doctor Zhivago. Show business legend Nancye Hayes will play the tyrannical Miss Hannigan who runs the orphanage where Annie begins her journey. This is the third Australian production of Annie that Nancye has been involved with, having played Lily St Regis in the original production and been Resident Director for the second. Joining Nancye as her scurrilous brother Rooster Hannigan is television and stage favourite Todd McKenney (The Boy From Oz, Dancing With the Stars). Playing Rooster’s “lady friend” Lily St Regis and Warbucks’ secretary Grace Farrell will be two leading ladies of musical theatre, Chloe Dallimore (The Producers) and Julie Goodwin (West Side Story) respectively. Making his musical theatre debut in the role of President (FDR) Roosevelt will be radio veteran Alan Jones. Announcing his all-star cast, Producer John Frost said, “I’m often asked when Annie will return to the stage, and I’m thrilled that for this new production we have the A-list of Australian musical theatre talent – Anthony Warlow reprising one of his favourite roles, Nancye Hayes putting her mark on the role of the mean Miss Hannigan, and Todd McKenney, Chloe Dallimore and Julie Goodwin who are the cream of Australian talent. And I know Alan Jones will surprise everyone in his musical theatre debut. Our production team is top quality as well - director Karen Johnson-Mortimer, choreographer Kelly Aykers and musical director Peter Casey. You can bet your bottom dollar Annie will be a hit again in 2012!” Based on the popular Harold G r a y

comic strip “Little Orphan Annie”, the musical Annie burst into popularity in 1977 when it opened on Broadway. After running there for nearly six years, it has played in over 22 countries worldwide including the UK,Argentina, Japan, Germany, Sweden, Spain and Australia. Annie became a smash-hit movie musical in 1982 starring Aileen Quinn, Albert Finney and Carol Burnett that is adored worldwide and a fixture of popular culture references. Annie first toured Australia from 1978 with a cast that included Jill Perryman, Hayes Gordon, Kevin Johnson, Nancye Hayes and Anne Grigg. Annie returned to the Australia stage in 2000 produced by John Frost starring Anthony Warlow, Amanda Muggleton, Jane Scali, Philip Gould and Angela Kelly. For this production, Annie’s lyricist and original Broadway director Martin Charnin wrote a new song for Anthony Warlow to sing in the show, an unprecedented honour for Warlow. Annie is full of toe-tapping hits such as It’s the Hard Knock Life, Easy Street, You’re Never Fully Dressed Without A Smile, NYC, Maybe and everyone’s favourite song Tomorrow. These wonderful songs have become staples of musical theatre repertoires worldwide and now, 34 years on, it remains one of the most loved and universally appealing musicals of all time.

BOOKING DETAILS Lyric Theatre, Sydney Season: From Thursday 29 December 2011 Opening Night: Thursday 5 January 2012 Performance Times: Wed–Sat 8pm, Matinees Wed 1pm & Sat 2pm, Sun 1pm & 6pm (to Jan 30) Wed–Sat 8pm, Matinees TuesWed 1pm, Sat 2pm & Sun 3pm (from Jan 30) Price: $40.00 - $135.90 (children’s prices available all sessions except Fri/Sat eve) Bookings: 1300 795 267 or Groups of 12 or more (02) 8240 2290

Images by Jeff Busby



Den Hanrahan

chats with “The Debstar”

Images of Adam Harvey and Jayne Denham courtesy of Mark Turnbull. Image of Beccy Cole [and fan] courtesy of Guy Wilmott.

chats with “The Debstar”



n the weekend of 10th and 11th December The Dam Hotel at Wadalba (just north of Wyong) held a special Country Music charity event called “The Super Jam at the Dam” which raised just over $8,000.00 for much needed funds for an ECG Machine for the Central Coast Area Health’s Hospital at Wyong. The wet weather did not deter our Country music fans. On a near rainy day on Saturday, fans were rocking in their boot scooting boots right up to their Akubra hats to our great country musicians Jayne Denhan, Matt Scullion, The Road Sisters, Den Hanrahan and the beautiful Beccy Cole. On Sunday the rains came pouring down, it was as if 10,000 crying angels had heard the slow sad songs of our performers, but avid Country fans were sitting in their chairs in the car park with umbrellas and raincoats and just didn’t want to budge listening to Den and his band. The weather got worse, the truck was teeming with water, the band were drenched and instruments had to be saved. After deliberation with Troy (publican), musicians and in particular the wonderful Den Hanrahan (who donated his amps and equipment so the other performers could play) everyone in attendance continued to rock on inside the pub. What a great intimate atmosphere. Pub Country Rock at its best with Travis Collins, Bill Chambers, Amber Lawrence and Adam Harvey playing to a packed house. A great crowd pleaser was when all the performers mingled with their fans, enjoying a few beers and a chat in the pub. The Dam Hotel has made a mark on the Central Coast for Country music and we are all looking forward to similar Country events in 2012. The Dam Hotel is located on the corner of Minnesota Road and the Pacific Highway, Wyong North, just a 10 minute drive from Wyong town centre and 1.5hrs North of Sydney on the freeway. Whether you are a local or a visitor to the Coast, it is worth a visit to the Dam Hotel where you can book a room, listen to great music in a relaxed atmosphere on Friday nights from 5pm, Saturdays from 3pm, Sundays from 3pm and a great Karaoke with Miss Krissy and Drew on Thursday nights from 7.30pm. (P.S the food is pretty Dam good too with live music while you are dining and a great, safe kiddies playground) For further information on the Dam hotel and their facilities please log on to Or call one of their friendly staff on (02) 43 923333.

Amber Lawrence


s the rains came pelting down at the Dam Hotel on Sunday, singer, songwriter, storyteller, guitar, banjo and harp player, stompbox stomper, front bar larrikin and just all round nice bloke, Den Hanrahan was the saviour of the day by donating his PA and Rig equipment so the rest of the bands (Amber, Adam, Bill and Travis Collins) could rock on and keep everyone dry inside the pub. We all owe a great big THANK YOU DEN for saving the day. Den Hanrahan and I chatted in my office (the bottle shop) after his random act of kindness. I asked Den how he became involved in the Dam Hotel Fundraiser “Troy (the licensee) and I are good friends from Bathurst and we have been supporting each other for many years and this event sounded really good and am happy to support Troy and this good cause. Den’s music is a favourite of mine; it is country rock with harmonica, banjo and excellent slide guitar work. I asked Den if he writes all his own material “I write all the songs and I write all the music – I write it all. Most songwriters will probably agree that the song writes itself, the songs just come out. I have a degree in composition from Nimbin.” Canberra local, Den was 32 when he first got “hooked” on Country. “I was into Johnny Cash and then I heard a band called Steve Morse and the Gypsy Dregs who played this weird fusion ( in 1994 Steve joined Deep Purple as guitarist) who played this Dixie 2 step tunes and he was this really hot picker and I thought gee that’s great! And I got into Country that way. Now I have just gotten into the Blue Grass and playing acoustic. I never owned an acoustic guitar until about 1996. Den is a self -taught guitar player “I was really lucky. I played in a band called Saddle Rash where we played at the Australian Rugby Union World Cup here in Australia – where sponsor Bundaberg Rum was the sponsor – it was wicked and it was a great experience. Saddle rash are the guys that inspired me into Country Music.” Den will begin recording on 10th January in an old hall in Gooloogong. “They have this really beautiful stage with woollen curtains and am really looking forward to recording there.” If you are on the Central Coast for New Years and are looking for a great band to dance into 2012 you can catch Den at the Dam Hotel. I totally recommend that you at least listen to his music. For more of this talented performer go to You Tube or songs/black-swamp-road-64269951 Photo courtesy of Mark Turnbull

9 year old A m b e r Lawrence is a vibrant young ng Country artist st who was alsoo performing for this great charity event at the Dam Hotel and Amber took 5 minutes to have a chat with me. I asked Amber mber how she began her country singing career “I was singing with a cover band in Sydney called The Family Von Trapp for about 3 years and that was a great learning experience. I was listening to Country Music though on the side and really enjoying it, and in 2004 I was given a guitar for Christmas by the boyfriend, then we had a break up which all coincided. I had country music playing, a guitar and a broken heart so I started writing country songs. That was the first time I ever really contemplated being a singer/songwriter and country musician. The first song I ever wrote, I entered in the very first Telstra Road to Tamworth quest and got through to the grand final even though I didn’t win it, that was the doors that opened to my career.” “I’ve Got The Blues is still my favourite song, it is a quirky, yodelling (even though I don’t Yodel) and people really like that. This led to my 1st album released in 2007 called The Mile which I was nominated for 2 Golden Guitar Awards. Even though I didn’t win again the real rewards are when people come to my shows. Then in 2008 my 2nd Album When It All Comes Down received 3 Golden Guitar nominations. I actually won a Horizon Award in Tamworth, which is and award to recognition as an Ambassador for Country which is amazing.” Today, Ambers’ talents include five Golden Guitar nominations, six number one songs, the Horizon award, TV performances on major shows like Mornings with Kerri-Anne and Spicks and Specks plus tours and stage appearances with artists including Adam Harvey, Beccy Cole, Melinda Schneider and Lee Kernaghan. Amber also linked with Australia’s armed forces when she entertained troops in East Timor in 2008, hopefully we will be all touring again in the near future.” “I have just finished my 3rd Album called ‘3’ which has a lot of different styles and a lot of different influences.” I asked Amber where she gets her inspiration for writing songs “Mostly when I’m driving, or having a glass of wine and integrated into my lifestyle.” In 2012 Amber will be touring nationally with Adam Harvey so keep a look out for Amber and Adam’s websites or listen to Today’s Country 94one on your radio. For more information on Amber go to www. and for Todays Country 94one. Photo courtesy of Mark Turnbull

De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 25

it’s ENTERTAINMENT Not So Dusty II - The search is over... the fan’s tracks have been found!

Gray’s Scene


ulla Records are pleased to announce that a decision has been made and that there will now be two Slim Dusty fan tracks included on the new tribute album Not So Dusty II (The Bushies Tribute to Slim Dusty). Nulla originally issued an invitation for fans to submit their Slim tributes with the intention that only one tribute would be chosen as a final track on the new and long awaited sequel to the gold selling 1998 album Not So Dusty. In response to this invite the record label received a large and diverse mix of both covers of Slim’s classics and heartfelt tribute songs written and recorded by fans over the last 7 years since Slim’s passing (2003). A Nulla representative said “We were all a bit taken aback to be honest, we sort of expected to receive 10 or 20 tracks …not 50 or 60! It was a really nice surprise to receive so many but the large number of entries and the overall high standard made it impossible for us to pick one track”. Due to this overwhelming response from the fans the decision became real tough …and consequently they decided it was too hard to pick just one and it was agreed that at least two fan tracks would have to somehow be squeezed onto the final album master i.e one Slim cover version and one original tribute song. The 2 artists/songs chosen as the special fan bonus tracks on the Not So Dusty II are: Merv Webster ‘I never cried for Elvis but I shed a tear for Slim’ Brade ‘When the Rain Tumbles Down in July’

By Darren Gray

Congratulations to Merv and to Brade… Merv Webster is now a respected bush poet but up until a couple of years ago he could be seen regularly busking in Peel Street during the Tamworth Festival. Congratulations also to the young Queensland duo Brade… Breanna & Jade you combined to create a truly fresh version of the first song Slim ever wrote. Tamworth Festival ‘Album Launch’ Tickets now available! There will be a special Not So Dusty II Show (A Bushies tribute to Slim) happening on Friday, January 27 (7pm start) at the Bush Balladeers Homestead as a part of the 2012 40th Tamworth Country Music Festival. Many of the guest artists featured on the new album will be performing on the night. Tickets are now available online: www.visittamworth. com or in person via the Tamworth Tourism office.


M a x P e l l i c a n o F o l l o w Th at D r e a m The Gospel According to Elvis




laywright Don Reid is following his hit show Codgers which revolved around five ageing men with a brand new comedy called Biddies which will tour Australia during 2012. The plot follows five feisty women who reunite at the infant school they once attended; these live wires definitely don’t see themselves as old. Things turn crook when they are accidentally locked into their old classroom with nothing but a bucket and a supply of Adora Cream Wafers to see them through the night. The comedy comes thick and fast as old rivalries reappear and confessions start to flow. The impressive cast includes Annie Byron and Jeanie Drynan with confirmed dates including The Glen Street Theatre in Belrose from 11-22 April. Full tour details can be found at Over here in Great Britain the Christmas pantomime season is in full swing. Theatres up and down the country are awash with screaming kids, men dressed as ugly sisters and giant beanstalks. In the past venues across the land were clamouring to secure Australian soap stars to top the bill but sadly ratings for Home & Away and Neighbours no longer achieve the dizzy heights they once did so American celebrities such as pop singer Jimmy Osmond and Knight Rider star David Hasselhoff have been drafted in instead. Having said that, a couple of well-known Australian’s, are wowing audiences. Anne Charleston who played Madge Bishop in

Neighbours is starring in Aladdin in Reading and Dame Edna Everage herself is topping the bill in a production of Dick Whittington at the New Wimbledon Theatre in London. Australian’s have a long tradition of starring in British pantomimes, music hall favourite Florrie Forde was the first and was regularly cast as principal boy up until her death in 1940. A number of people have asked me what became of Jewel Blanch who played terminally ill night club singer Abbie Singleton in The Young Doctors. Well folks these days she runs the Ten Ten Music Group with her husband Barry Coburn in the USA, since founding this company they have seen it become the number one independent music publisher in Nashville. Jewel has enjoyed an award winning career as a country music singer and has appeared in popular series such as Fantasy Island, Lassie and Bonanza. Incidentally the song which she performed in The Young Doctors, Will I Ever Be Loved, received an award at the Queensland Country Music Awards. PHOTO TOP: Jewel Blanch as Abbie Singleton in The Young Doctors. Photo copyright Fremantle Media. PHOTO BOTTOM: Anne Charleston is playing the Empress of China in Aladdin this Christmas.


in converstation with Celtic diva

Sarah Calderwood by “The Debstar”


had a quick chat with Sarah about her new album, her band Sunas and her love of Celtic music. “My background is Celtic. My grandparents are English and Irish and Scottish and my mother is English/Australian and I also found out a few months ago that my great grandfather was an orange man – very protestant Irish. I get branches of my family that I haven’t me in Cornwall England call me up and to say your great grandfather who had a great voice would have been very proud to hear you sing. We are all very proud of you.” It makes me feel really good that I do what I love. Sarah Calderwood has recently released her first Solo Album “As Night Falls” featuring the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra conducted by Andrew Greene performing the traditional songs The Maid of the River, I Am Stretched On Your Grave, and The Blue Cockade, the latter featuring Mike Scott from the ex-Waterboys. Also featured is internationally acclaimed accordion player Alan Kelly, Berlin-based Australian guitarist Bob Spencer, former Savage Garden bass player Lee Novak, and virtuoso Australian percussionist David Jones. Australia’s leading classical CD label ABC Classics made a groundbreaking deal with Sarah– the first in which a solo folksinger has been signed to a major classical label. Sarah had 6 weeks to record and produce her Album “It took 2 weeks to record in the studio starting at 9am to 6pm - it turns out I am quite good at working to deadlines.” Sarah said. “My Inspiration in writing comes from everyday situations and my band Sunas. It is the experiences all around me that are most influential in my music.” The successful album by Sarah’s band Sunas called Celtic Road had six consecutive weeks in the ARIA Classical Top 10 and achieved high rotation on ABC Classic FM and Local Radio playlists when released in February this year. I recommend all our readers to have a listen to “As Night Falls” With its roots firmly in the Celtic tradition. To purchase this Album and further information on Sunas you can go to any good music store or please log on to http://www. or www.sunasband. com. SarahCalderwoodMusic



Touring Australia with the ALLSTAR ORCHESTRA and

Over Thirty Top Forty Hits Including: Wild One Swingin’ School Volare Sway Kissin’ Time The Cha Cha Cha Forget Him We Got Love Good Time Baby That Old Black Magic (I’ve got) Bonnie Wildwood Days I’ll never Dance Again and many more !

Bookings: 02 9830 0600


WESTS LEAGUES, NEW LAMBTON WEDNESDAY 21st Bookings: 02 4935 1200

NELSON BAY DIGGERS THURSDAY 22nd Bookings: 02 4981 1344

THE PLAYHOUSE, GEELONG FRIDAY 23rd Bookings: 03 5225 1200

THE PALMS AT CROWN, MELBOURNE SATURDAY 24th Bookings: 1300 795 012

FRANKSTON ARTS CENTRE SUNDAY 25th Bookings: 03 9784 1060


CAPITAL THEATRE, BENDIGO THURSDAY 29th Bookings: 03 5434 6100


BANKSTOWN SPORTS CLUB SATURDAY 31st Bookings: 02 9722 9888

BOBBY RYDELL 2012 AUSTRALIAN TOUR Touring with the Allstar Orchestra and The Allstars A Unique Entertainment Experience!


obby Rydell’s career spans six decades and encompasses every area of entertainment. His debut in the late fifties as a rock n roll teen idol lead to starring roles on such hit films as ‘Bye Bye Birdie’ and plays such as ‘West Side Story’. Bobby has made countless network television appearances throughout the world on shows such as Ed Sullivan, Jack Benny, George Burns, Milton Berle, Perry Como, American Bandstand and Brian Henderson’s Bandstand. Working with the greats of comedy Bobby was able to develop an uncanny feel for comedy. Bobby Rydell made his first television appearance on “American Bandstand”in 1959 when he sang his No.1 hit single Kissin’ Time, and a year later he made his film debut with Dick Clark in “Swingin’ Together”. He then went on to star opposite Ann Margret, Dick Van Dyke and Janet Leigh in “Bye Bye Birdie” and “That Lady From Peking” opposite Nancy Kwan. Bobby Rydell has earned a reputation as a classic performer. He is a superb singer whose voice has matured over the years and he has proved to be an outstanding drummer, an agile dancer and an extremely fine actor, with an unsurpassed knack for comedy. A polished performer at the age of 19 Bobby was the youngest ever person to headline the famous Copacabana in New York. Bobby’s recording career earned him 34 top forty hits placing him in the top five artists of the era. Bobby’s hits include million selling singles ‘Volare’, ‘Wild One’, ‘We Got Love’, ‘Kissin Time’, ‘Swinging School’ and ‘Forget Him’, selling a total of more than 25 million records. Today Bobby enjoys a busy schedule throughout the world as a headline performer. Australia has welcomed him for some 20 tours and he remains a favourite performer. Bobby also performs regularly in Las Vegas and Atlantic City. For the past 25 years he has also performed on hundreds of shows with Frankie Avalon and Fabian, with the trio as the Golden Boys. Of all the teen idols of the day the singing and performance of Bobby Rydell was unquestionably the most polished. Bobby Rydell’s influence on popular music has been quite profound. When the producers of the world’s largest selling movie soundtrack album, ‘Grease’, wanted to pay tribute to the era in which it was set they named the school where most of the action took place as Rydell High.

In 1995 his hometown of Philadelphia named the street he was born “Bobby Rydell Boulevard.” The City of Philadelphia sponsored “block party” followed dedication ceremonies. Quite a tribute to a City’s favorite native son! Wildwood, NJ also has a street named for Bobby in appreciation for Bobby’s massive hit, Wildwood Days. The teen idol, now a seasoned performer, continues to sell out shows throughout the world. Without any doubt Bobby Rydell is a true American music icon. Bobby Rydell is touring Australia with the Allstar Orchestra and The Allstars during March 2012. “If you have not seen Bobby Rydell perform you have deprived yourself of something very special. When he returns to Australia make sure you are there!” - Bob Hayden, Big Beat of The Fifties

BOBBY RYDELL 2012 NSW TOUR DATES Friday 16th March - Twin Towns Services Club, Tweed Head (Bookings: 1800 014 014 or Saturday 17th March - Blacktown Workers Club (Bookings: 02 9830 0600 or Tuesday 20th March - Glasshouse Theatre, Port Macquarie (Bookings: 02 6581 8888) Wednesday 21st March - West Leagues Club, New Lambton (Bookings: 02 4935 1200) Thursday 22nd March - Nelson Bay Diggers Club (Bookings: 02 4981 1344) Saturday 31st March - Bankstown Sports Club (Bookings: 02 9722 9888 or

De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 27

Time for a Chat Beccy Cole

at The Dam Hotel, Central Coast

with “The Debstar”

On the road to the Jayco Tamworth Country Music Festival 2012...

Chillin with Bill

Friday 20 - Sunday 29 January



was lucky l k enough h tto have h a quick i k chat h t with ith Beccy who was performing a few songs at the Dam Hotel to help raise money for the Central Coast Area Health for an ECG Machine at Wyong Hospital. This was the second annual event at the Dam Hotel which was organized by Australian Country Award winner Adam Harvey. “Adam asked me to become involved in this event and I gladly accepted. If Adam believes in this charity, then I believe in it and I very happy to be here today.“ Beccy mentioned that she has received a very impressive six nominations for the 40th Jayco CMAA Country Music Awards of Australia. “I am so happy to have been nominated for 6 Awards this year and I always look forward to heading to Tamworth. I have been going to Tamworth now for 20 years and It’s just a great feeling and I love it”. Beccy’s nominations for 2012 include ‘Album of the Year’, ‘Female Artist of the Year’, Vocal Collaboration of the Year’, ‘APRA Song of the Year’ and ‘Heritage Song of The Year. I asked Beccy what song if any she relates to strongly from the heart “It would have to be Poster Girl. That’s the song that resonates so much to other people who have served our country or people that know other people within for forces overseas. I wrote it on the plane on the way back from performing in front of the forces.” Beccy’s latest hit Shiny Things has taken over the number one spot on the national Country Tracks Top 30. “I was so excited when I heard the news I jumped up and down then celebrated with a few glasses of wine. It Is just fantastic.” For more on the lovely Beccy Cole please go to

Photo courtesy of Mark Turnbull

he theme for the 40th year takes its name from a great song performed by Slim Dusty and written by Don Walker, “Looking Forward Looking Back.” One of Australia’s best celebrated events, the Tamworth Country Music Festival will be held from Friday 20 January to Sunday 29 January 2012. TCMF is the largest music festival in the southern hemisphere and one of the top 10 in the world! The variety of country music is showcased during the festival with over 2,200 events and 4,000 different performances or gigs in 80 different venues. There are over 600 buskers in Peel Street alone, providing a diverse range of entertainment each day. For more info:

Travel Australia at “SEE” level 1 Day TAMWORTH COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL

28th Jan 2012

$70 pp

This is a long but most enjoyable day to see some of the best that our country music talent has to offer. Soak up the atmosphere of this the 40th annual event. Includes luxury coach travel & morning tea. P/u Woy Woy - Gosford - Ourimbah - Wyong - Kanwal - Doyalson P/u Kincumber - Terrigal - The Entrance - Doyalson


20th Jan 2012

$889 ppts

Bookings close 23rd Dec 11 Enjoy the sights & sounds of this the 40th annual spectacular & popular music event. See talented performers at live shows & listen to the buskers in the streets. Includes luxury coach travel, DBB in Tamworth motel. MUST BE BOOKED BY FRIDAY 23.12.2011

Go to our web site for more info OR Central Coast 4353 9050 Outside C Coast NSW 1800 888 481 PO Box 370 Wyong 2259

For all Holiday, Charter & Excursions Email:

Lic’d T. A . 2TA 4764

“It’s never a fuss on an ultra modern, fully air conditioned Road Runner Coach.” Home pick ups Central Coast, Newcastle, FREE Lake Macquarie , extended tours only

Log in for FREE membership and special deals



also had a few minutes to chat with The charismatic Mr. Bill Chambers was also performing at the Dam Hotel fundraiser. I started my country career when I was 3 years old (which is a true story). It is just a faint memory but I heard the Carter family on an old 78rpm record that my Mum and Dad had and I can still remember the sound, man it sounded so good! My parents had an old gramophone and I grew up listening to Hank Snow, the Carter Family, Hank Williams, Jimmy Rogers and when I was seven my dad took me to see a country music show with Chad Morgan, Rick and Thel from Australia which changed my life. At 7 years old I decided that this is what I want to do. When I was 10 years old I got up and sang a solo at school and loved it, I joined a high school band, I appeared on New Faces and one the first 3 heats which gave me enough encouragement to further my career. I was also on the Reg Lindsay Show regularly for 5 years.” I went out to the Nullabor when I had Nash and Casey (only 3 weeks old) and became a professional fox hunter (another true story) and used to hunt foxes in the 70’s when furs were fashionable. That was a different part of my life where we would sit around the camp fire and sing songs. I used to sing the same stuff, The Carter Family, Hank Williams etc. and the kids used to join in We did this for about 10 years out there and when Casey was 10 we moved back home and started our family band called The Dead Ringer Band. We toured for about 10 years and then Casey went out on her own and the rest is history. Bill still plays in Kasey’s band when she’s on the road and the gigs take us all over the world. I love performing with my band The Bill Chambers Band and have a regular gig at the Lakes Hotel at the Entrance. I asked Bill what song he connects with “The song is on my latest record called South End Rain which is about my life story, where I grew up on a fishing village in South Australia. My Dad was a fisherman, his Dad was a fisherman, my brothers are all fishermen, and my sisters are all married to fishermen. “ I wish I had more space to write about this legendary Country Music man, so watch this space next month. Bill’s website is Photo courtesy of Mark Turnbull

brain BENDERS 1



11 15



2 3 4

9 1 5

8 1 9



21 28




3 8 1

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36 40








47 49





62 67





60 63


68 73












72 79


77 82


Fill the grid so that every column, every row and every 3x3 box contains the digits 1 to 9.




















18 24







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85 87



POP QUIZ 1. How many black pawns are used in a chess game? __________ 2. Which two countries are connected by the Khyber pass? ________________________________________________________ 3. What is the name of the scientist who produces James Bond’s gadgets? ________________________________________________________ 4. In State of Origin football, which Queensland player was named Man of the Match a record eight times?

1. 4. 8. 11. 13. 15. 17. 18. 20. 21. 24. 27. 28. 30. 31. 33. 34. 35.

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36. 39. 42. 44. 45. 46. 48. 49. 50. 52. 54. 55. 56. 57. 60. 62. 65. 67.

________________________________________________________ 6. What do the letters MI stand for in MI5 and MI6? ________________________________________________________ 7. The diamond is which month’s birthstone?___________________ 8. Who was the first Hollywood actress to appear on a postage stamp? ________________________________________________________ 9. What is Australia’s national floral emblem? ________________________________________________________ 10. The heart of famous racehorse Phar Lap is on display where?

69. Banishment 70. Light-purple colour 72. Sheep’s cry 73. Family of lions 75. Additional 77. Guided 79. Crop up 81. Gun (engine) 82. Wear away 84. Slight trace 85. Naval officer 86. Cheeky smile 87. Inappropriately employs 88. Barn-laid produce


________________________________________________________ 5. Who was the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia?

Beaten by tennis serve Reached an understanding Glare fixedly Remain Onion relatives Animal pouches Locations Fence openings Unspoilt paradise Fuses Agents Underground waste channel Game park tour Benefit Warty creature Vehicle depot Run-down neighbourhood Neither these nor ...

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 12. 14. 16. 19. 22. 23. 25.

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26. 29. 32. 35. 37. 38. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 47. 51. 52. 53. 54. 58.

Tribal seniors Applied therapy to Foundation garment Picture puzzles Expenses Donned clothing Vapours Adjourn to a future date Uncontrolled slides Avid T-bone or sirloin Washington DC’s ... Hill Closer Lodged Small packet Infant’s toy Church table

59. Self-regard 61. Curved over 63. Colorado ski resort 64. Wields 65. Hand covers 66. Wearies 68. Port-au-Prince is there 71. Together (with) 72. Loud noise 74. News story 76. Centres 78. Lairs 80. Transgression 83. Lament

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De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 29

up for GRABS For your chance to win any of the fantastic items “UP FOR GRABS”, your entry must include your name, address, contact telephone number. Write your details on the back of an envelope, along with the competition code word and post it to: Hey! Boomers Competitions Suite 169, 3 Holtermann Street, Crows Nest NSW 2065.

! y e h The Opal Desert by Di Morrissey The Opal Desert is the story of three women from different generations with unresolved issues in their lives who meet in the fictitious NSW town of Opal Lake. The friendship that developes between these three women, who meet in the strangely beautiful but desolate landscape of the opal fields, helps them resolve and come to terms with the next stage of their lives. Hey! Boomers has one copy of The Opal Desert to give away. To win, simply write your details on teh back of an envelope, along with the CODE WORD: OPAL and post it to the competition address at the top of the page.

National Folk Festival Hey! Boomers has one double Adult Season pass to the National Folk Festival to give away (details of Festival on page 23), valued at $630 to give away. To win, simply write your details on the back of an envelope, along with the CODE WORDS: FOLK FEST and post it to the competition address at the top of this page.

Yoram Gross “My Animated Life” Hey! Boomers has 1 autographed copy of Yoram Gross’ book to give away valued at $29.95. To win, simply write your details on the back of an envelope, along with the CODE WORD: BLINKY BILL and post it to the competition address at the top of this page.

Opera on Sydney Harbour Hey! Boomers has 3 x double tickets in B Reserve to give away valued at $115 each for Thursday 22 March. This is the final Dress Rehearsal. To win, simply write your details on the back of an envelope, along with the CODE WORD: OPERA and post it to the competition adddress at the top of the page.

Bobby Rydell CDs Hey! Boomers has 5 copies of “The Best of Bobby Rydell” valued at $29.95 each to give away. To win, simply write your details on the back of an envelope, along with the CODE WORD: BOBBY and post it to the competition address at the top of this page. 30


In the stars... your horoscope CAPRICORN DEC 22–JAN 20

Taureans, is an understatement. You are more open to change now and opportunities to make those needed changes will come in the next two months. Your karmic challenge is to let go the tendency to attachments to external things and follow the desires that your heart dictates as a new form of inner freedom.


lessons that are currently still being worked through. Your karmic challenge is to identify the truth rather than look for escape routes. Consider what is best for you-and concentrate on taking care of yourself. Think of what you have achieved and be happy where you are!


Saturn aligns most closely with the sign of Capricorn, they are known for their Tolerance determination, and practicality. These traits will be needed over the coming months as you have a lot of responsibilities to deal with. Your karmic challenge is to make your decisions rather than blindly following rules that do not apply. GEMINI MAY 21–JUN 20 AQUARIUS JAN 21–FEB 19 Planetary influences in 2011 have brought many This year has allowed you to look to things that have depleted and drained your energy. Life has been a battle! The coming year will allow you to focus on the challenges as you reorganize. The karmic challenge is to keep the best from the past, letting go of the rest and evolving flexibly. PISCES FEB 20–MAR 20 Piscean possess a mystical quality, gifted with the ability to inspire others. Boundaries are essential, however, or they lose their sense of self in the process. This year’s resolution should be to release any self-defeating patterns. Life can be testing, because your karmic challenge is to lean to empathize without taking on someone else’s pain. ARIES MAR 21–APR 20 Aries can be very direct, to put it mildly! Their karmic challenge is to consider the needs of others. Every Arian at some time in their life will indulge in rash behavior. To avoid this over the coming months try to lessen your commitments and obligations. Write down five of the things you would like to change in 2012.Expect intense interaction with others – try to turn the melodramas into Mellow-Drama! TAURUS APR 21–MAY 21 To say that it has been a torrid year for the

Mercury’s change of direction will bring an optimistic outlook – the cosmos is backing your ability to use your quick mind and the ability to analyze. Your strength lies in the ability to be emotional flexibility, in this way you will cope with life’s demands more easily. Your karmic challenge is to exercise judgment and discernment without becoming pedantic.

The desire for tranquility has you fighting a losing battle at the moment, the solution may be in not to allowing your insecure- thinking to spiral out of control. Planetary intervention is speeding up in your sign making it essential to discriminate between what holds true value and purpose for CANCER JUN 21–JUL 22 you. Your karmic challenge is to be open and Highly sensitive to others feelings, you have the truthful so that the needs of all parties are met ability to nurture, support and guide others and equally or at least considered. yourself to recognizing and attaining their full potential. The danger, however, is issues of co- SCORPIO OCT 24–NOV 22 dependence – where you over give. Your karmic The depth and knowledge in the saying, ”Life is challenge is to nurture yourself rather than depend a journey not a destination!” will convince you on emotional support from others. This year you that rather than swim against the tide look to the have learnt to choose your battles wisely, thus path of least resistance. No amount of push and commanding respect that will serve you well in shove will budge outcomes. Your karmic lesson is 2012. to look to issues on the misuse of power around past events. When you look at life and its many LEO JUL 23–AUG 23 challenges as a series of tests, you begin to see The current year has been fraught with issues, each challenge as an opportunity to grow! for yourself and all around you.2012 is your year to shine! Even though there are still many SAGITTARIUS NOV 23–DEC 21 contradictions in your life-you will look to a more Sagittarian’s are normally restless and this coming peaceful life. Many frustrations can be overcome year will be no exception-your karmic challenge is if you keep centered on what is truly relevant. to distinguish what is true and live according to Your karmic challenge is to look to personal that truth.. A new sense of reality, coupled with empowerment Your primary goal is a relatively your gift of endurance will make it easier for you to work out what you want and how to attain it. stress-free life.

Terms & Conditions of GIVEAWAYS in Hey! Boomers 1. 2. 3.

Instructions on how to enter forms part of these Conditions of Entry Entry is open to all residents of Australia. Employees of Hey! Boombers, their advertising agencies, newsagents, sub agents, sponsors and their respective employees and families are not eligible to enter. 4. The competitions commence 10th December 2011, entries close 30th January 2012 unless otherwise stated. 5. The winning entries will be drawn at the offices of Hey! Boomers on the first working day following close of the competition. 6. You may enter as often as you like but each entry must be on a separate stamped envelope. 7. Prize winners will be notified by mail within 14 days of the competition draw and published in the February 2012 issue of Hey! Boomers. 8. Prizes are not transferable or exchangeable and cannot be taken as cash. 9. No responsibility is taken for late or misdirected mail. 10. Where travel is involved in the prize, the winner will be responsible for meals, spending money, transport to and from departure and arrival points, travel insurance and all other ancillary costs unless otherwise stated. 11. Second Chance Draw – In the case of unclaimed prizes, after a 3 month waiting period a second chance draw will take place. NSW TPL# LTPM/08/00116 ACT TP 08/03121

MINERVA’S TAROT READINGS With channelled guidance



2 6 7 8 5 4 9 3 1

3 4 9 7 1 6 2 8 5

5 8 1 2 3 9 6 7 4

4 7 8 1 9 2 5 6 3



9 5 6 3 8 7 4 1 2

1 2 3 4 6 5 7 9 8


6 3 4 5 7 8 1 2 9

7 1 5 9 2 3 8 4 6



8 9 2 6 4 1 3 5 7

Quiz Answers: 1. Eight 2. Afghanistan and Pakistan 3. Q 4. Wally Lewis 5. Amy Johnson 6. Military Intelligence 7. April 8. Grace Kelly 9. Golden Wattle 10. Canberra’s National Museum of Australia

De c 2 011 / J a n 2 01 2 31

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