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COFFS HARBOUR AIRPORT Gateway to the Coffs Coast Issue 48 •



RALLY AUSTRALIA is on again at Coffs





Travel Tips, Cooking Ideas + MORE!

COVER PHOTO: Jaanus Ree / Red Bull Content Pool

contents PUBLISHER Patrick McElligott



EDITOR Aly Marshall

06 13 CABS

DESIGN Melissa Hanwright















SALES Brian Hartley


Coffs Harbour Airport Magazine is published quarterly by Trans Tasman Media. Views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily endorsed by the publisher. No responsibility is accepted by the publisher or the printer for the accuracy of information contained in the text or advertisements. Advertisements must comply with the relevant Trade Practices Act 1979. Responsibility for compliance with the act rests with the person, company or advertising agency submitting the advertisement. Neither the publisher nor the editor accepts responsibility for advertisements.

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Formerly Inflight Publishing Pty. Ltd.

Ph (07) 3891 7793 • Fax (07) 3891 7702 PO Box 670, Stones Corner, Qld 4120




elcome to the 48th issue of Coffs Harbour Airport magazine. This is a bumper issue, so here’s a snapshot of the stories you will find on the inside pages.

After 13 rounds of the World Rally Championship, the competition as to who will win the title of champion driver for 2019 is a close tussle between Ott Tanak, Sebastien Ogier and Thierry Neuville. This will make for thrilling driving and an exciting spectacle for fans and followers of world class motor sport. Our story from page 10 gives you the latest information on the four days of the rally with suggestions of the best locations to see and enjoy all the action and entertainment. Following nearly two years of construction and renovations, the multi-million dollar upgrade to the C.ex Coffs International Stadium was officially opened on 7 September. Rather than cutting a red ribbon, the Deputy Prime Minister, Michael McCormack MP, with Pat Conaghan MP, Member for Cowper and Cr Denise Knight, Mayor, Coffs Harbour, kicked footballs and announced the stadium open for business. Now with three grandstands, the latest in hi-tech audio and visual systems and multifunction facilities for players, coaches, spectators, media, officials and administrators the facility is now considered the best sporting venue in regional Australia. If you have not been there, the images from page 20 give you a hint of what is in store for when you do.

utilised and operated is explained in our article accompanied with images of the aircraft being refuelled and replenished. Turn to page 24 for more on this story. The Cultural and Civic Space proposed for Coffs Harbour is another topic of high importance to many in the community. From page 22 is a message from Mayor Denise Knight reflecting on the planning, procedures and benefits this project offers our residents, visitors and businesses in the City of Coffs Harbour. We also bring you up-to-date with changes happening with Taxis Coffs Harbour as it transitions to its new operating systems, livery and business name 13 Cabs. Last but not least, we introduce you to Jason Bailey, our newest member to the airport team. Jason’s skills and success in managing a number of Council’s business units is now being applied to his new role as Commercial & Compliance Manager. Welcome, Jason. So sit back, enjoy a coffee in Biggles Flight Lounge or the Hangar Café and catch up with some of the exciting happenings at the airport and around Coffs Harbour.

Dennis Martin OAM Airport Manager

Another multi-million dollar piece of equipment to recently land on Coffs Coast was the New South Wales Rural Fire Service’s newest acquisition, a Boeing 737 Large Aerial Tanker. With the outbreak of severe bush fires on the New England Tableland, the aircraft and its air and ground crews were repositioned to Coffs Harbour Airport to help battle the blazes. The way in which this aircraft is

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Jason Bailey Jason Bailey has recently been appointed to the position of Airport Commercial and Compliance Manager to replace Mark Cachia who has taken up a senior role at Gladstone Airport in Queensland. We thought it was opportune to introduce you to Jason and some of his business background. Just prior to taking up this position, Jason was Council’s Manager, Holiday Parks and Reserves with overall responsibility for business operations on Crown Land including holiday parks at Park Beach, Sawtell and the two Woolgoolga holiday parks. But let’s go back a little further and tell you about his time since graduating in 1992 from New England University (Lismore campus) with a Bachelor in Business (Tourism). After navigating the academic world, Jason ventured forth and entered the adventure tourism industry based in Coffs Harbour. For three years he assisted with rafting tours and jet ski hire operations. It was this hands-on experience of the books and boats that helped develop his business acumen. Then the hotel and hospitality sector beckoned. For the next 10 years Jason gained management experience with Accor Hotels in Coffs Harbour, Bowral and Wollongong. Hotels, especially large global conglomerates like Accor, deal daily with


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issues of compliance and operations at many levels. During this time, Jason gained insights into the hotel’s many and varied operations. Starting in room service, he spent time in almost every department ranging from concierge, bars, front desk, reservations and duty manager. When he transferred to Novotel North Beach, Wollongong, it was as Conference and Catering Operations Manager. According to Jason, he relished the role of managing and meeting client negotiations and expectations, staff training and development, food and beverage quality control and service delivery. And like all proficient department managers, meeting budget and profit targets. Now, with a solid and diverse operations background, Jason took his skills to another industry – transport. For three years he was the Operations Manager with Berrima Buslines. Here, regulatory compliance, driver and passenger safety, plant, equipment and staff resource management were critical issues which he did with success. Then it was time for another challenge. In 2004, Jason was successful in his application and was duly appointed as Holiday Parks Manager with Coffs Harbour City Council. For the next 15 years, he has overseen the day to day operations and developed strategic plans of management of these business units. As these facilities are on Crown Land, Jason was also responsible for liaison and compliance with State Government regulatory authorities.

Not only has Jason managed these day-to-day and long-term operations, he has also overseen the $25 million redevelopment of these parks, particularly accommodations and facilities upgrades including kitchens, reception and office facilities, roads and entrance realignments. And for doing such a fine job in managing these business units, Jason was tasked with also managing Council’s reserves partnerships with State Government. These include the Coffs Coast State Park, Jetty Foreshores, Sawtell and Woolgoolga Reserves. His knowledge, skills and expertise in developing strategic plans and plans of management are now being applied at Coffs Harbour Airport. In conjunction with the current assessment of a lease model for the future governance of the Coffs Harbour Airport, Jason is liaising with a variety of business, legal and compliance consultants as well as State and Commonwealth regulatory authorities. While being supported by the staff at Coffs Harbour Airport and Coffs Harbour City Council, Jason, with his extensive business background, is now overseeing this major project for Council and the people of Coffs Harbour. But it’s not always work, work, work. When not at the office, Jason enjoys beach walks with his wife, outings with family and when not doing home renovations, a round of golf with mates.

Welcome, Jason,

and every best wish for continued success.

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13 Cabs No, it is not the number of cabs available, rather the new name of the company as it transitions from Coffs Harbour Taxis to 13 Cabs (or for the math purists 13 2227). What started as a horse drawn carriage taxi service between The Jetty and Top Town (Coffs Harbour CBD) around 1910, became a motorised service in 1911 and has been in the process of transition ever since. Today, under the guidance of CEO Cathy Watt, the company has almost completed the change to the new bright orange and white livery, upgraded call centre technology, web site, mobile app and a fleet of

At your service 24/7 from Coffs Harbour Airport 26 modern vehicles – 14 sedans and 12 maxi taxis (with seating for up to 11 passengers). At some capital city airports it can be a long walk to the cab rank, but not at Coffs Harbour Airport. The Taxi Rank is right outside the Arrivals Hall entry/ exit doors. The area covered by 13 Cabs includes; the Northern Beaches area of Coffs Harbour, west to Bellingen and Dorrigo and south to Nambucca and Macksville and places in between. And of course, 13 Cabs will take you further afield, too. Just ask your driver for information and advice or call 13 2227 for bookings and prices.

13 Cabs (Coffs Harbour) is part of the expanding 13 Cabs network which provides taxi services in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Newcastle, Hobart, Alice Springs and many other regional cities around the country. The new 13 Cabs app is now available as a free download for both Apple and Android smartphones. This allows you to pre-book your journey, track the cab’s arrival, call your driver through the Driver Connect function and pay for the ride. So whenever you visit Coffs Coast or travel to other Australian cities and towns, the app is a convenient and efficient way to book ahead. While it is easy for able-bodied people to access and use taxi services, 13 Cabs also cater for people with special needs. All 12 maxi-taxis are fitted


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with hoists operated by specially trained drivers to make getting people from A to B safer, convenient and comfortable. The company is also responsible to the Department of Veteran Affairs for the carriage of its members who require transport to and from hospitals and their medical appointments. People who are vision impaired can rely on 13 Cabs services whose drivers understand their need to be accompanied by their companion guide dog. And throughout the school year, 13 Cabs carry children with disabilities along with their carers between their homes around Coffs Coast to their classrooms in and around Coffs Harbour. So, when next you need a taxi from Coffs Harbour Airport or from A to B in a growing number of cities and towns around the country, call 13 Cabs or go online at or use the new 13Cabs app.

ABOVE: Driver Paul ready to ride MAIN IMAGE: Drivers Paul (L) and Ken (R) at the airport Issue 48



BLUES AND BERRIES FESTIVAL WOOLGOOLGA This is going to be an epic day. Join in for a day of all things Blues music and berries by the beach. There will be a Pie Eating competition, Farm tours to Costa Berries Farm and loads of food and market stalls. Bring your chair, picnic blanket and sunscreen for an awesome outdoor family friendly event. Find out more at

REWIND: THE ARETHA FRANKLIN SONGBOOK TOUR COFFS HARBOUR Australia’s iconic Indigenous entertainer, Christine Anu, is returning to stages nationwide to celebrate the life and legacy of legendary soul diva Aretha Franklin in her hugely successful show, Rewind – The Aretha Franklin Songbook. In this must-see show, Christine delivers a passionate and energetic performance to pay tribute to her idol, the Queen of Soul, who passed away August 2018. During the show, Christine will sing Aretha’s most memorable and powerful tunes, including (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman, Bridge Over Troubled Water, Angel, Today I Sing The Blues and many more unforgettable classics. Christine will also sing songs from her own incredible back catalogue of hits, including the iconic My Island Home and Sunshine On A Rainy Day. Visit for details.

NSW ABORIGINAL CHILD AND FAMILY CONFERENCE COFFS HARBOUR The NSW Aboriginal Child and Family Conference is a key event for those working with Aboriginal children and families in NSW. The 2019 conference will be a valuable opportunity for Aboriginal community members, practitioners, managers, leaders and planners to share best practices, strengthen their skills, and hear from other experts in the field on the latest research and advocacy efforts to improve outcomes for Aboriginal children and their families.


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KENNARDS HIRE RALLY AUSTRALIA COFFS COAST The beautiful Coffs Coast of New South Wales will play host once again to Kennards Hire Rally Australia, the annual Australian leg and the closing round of the 2019 FIA World Rally Championship. Multi-million dollar “factory” teams from Japan, France, Korea and Britain, plus the cream of privateer outfits from around the world and Australia tackle opencountry and forestry stages across 300 kilometres in spectacular sub-tropical scenery. Fully-catered, family-friendly viewing points, easily accessible from Coffs Harbour and the surrounding region, will be available around the stages. Don’t miss the Destination NSW Super Special Stage around the beautiful Coffs Harbour Jetty foreshore. There will be plenty of free entertainment to keep the kids and adults amused. The rally’s climax will be the NSW Forests Rally Village on Sunday, providing great spectating, food and entertainment as the best in the world battle toward a globally-televised finish. To learn more, visit

A FAREWELL TO DORIS DAY WOOLGOOLGA Following the recent passing of the legendary Doris Day, acclaimed Australian singer Melinda Schneider pays tribute to her childhood idol in A Farewell To Doris, performing all of Doris’ timeless hits, including Que Sera, Sera, Sentimental Journey, Everybody Loves a Lover and Secret Love, backed by the wonderful Young At Heart Orchestra. A nostalgic concert celebration of a remarkable life. Head to for more.

SCREENWAVE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL COFFS HARBOUR Screenwave International Film Festival (SWIFF) is the premier film and screen culture festival of Northern New South Wales, hosted in the beautiful Coffs Coast. This two-week film festival includes nearly 100 feature film screenings in Coffs Harbour and the creative mountain town of Bellingen, including ‘questions and answers’ from filmmaker guests, networking events for filmmakers and a film program that focuses on world cinema, Australian films, documentaries - and the new Nextwave Youth Film Awards. Many events and screenings sell out quickly. The full SWIFF 2020 program will be released on 8 December. Issue 48


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Y L L RA stry Co PH OT OS: Fo re


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rp or atio n NS

W & Rally Au


In 2011, the World Rally Championship (WRC) arrived on Coffs Coast, exactly 100 years after the first Monte Carlo Rally which took place in January 1911. At the behest of Prince Albert 1st, 23 cars started out from 11 different locations around Europe to meet in the mountains surrounding the principality of Monte Carlo. His goal was to promote the micro state as a holiday destination. We believe he succeeded as each year the WRC stages the first Rally of the season, in January, in… Monte Carlo.

Back then, some of the factors used to determine the winners were passenger comfort, elegance of the car and the condition in which it arrived. Henri Rougier, one of nine drivers who departed from Paris, driving a Turcat-Mery 25 HP vehicle along the 1,020km route was proclaimed the winner. Reports indicate the judges’ decision was controversial (but not specified). Nevertheless, Mr Rougier retained the title. If you go online and look up the event you will see a grainy image of Henri and a Turcat-Mery. You can decide for yourself if the car could be considered ‘elegant’ and speculate if this was a factor in the ‘controversy’.

Now, let, ’ s rev forward to 2019 and get the show on the road.

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The 27th WRC Rally Australia will return to Coffs Coast 14 to 17 November. This will be four days of entertainment and action with a packed program of motor sport, rock music and intense rallying as drivers and car manufactures compete for the ultimate driver and manufacturer title of World Rally Champion. Even before the Rally cars hit the dirt, you can soak up the sights, sounds and festival atmosphere at Pedders Rally Central. Located at the newly expanded C.ex Coffs International Stadium, all World Rally and Australian Rally cars can now be seen at this hard stand service park. This is where the drivers talk tactics with their team directors, mechanics and technicians. Before the Rally starts the atmosphere is usually calm and relaxed. But once the competition begins, it can become frantic as teams make running repairs, tyre changes, technical tweaks to on-board computers and engines all within set time limits. It’s exciting to watch which you can do from up close.

Between the rally cars coming and going there is plenty to do in Pedders Rally Central. You can sit back, relax and watch Rally on the big screen, enjoy a meal and refreshments (soft and alcoholic), check out the Rally souvenirs on offer and purchase Rally memorabilia of your favourite driver and vehicle manufacturer. It’s a great experience for all the family, and access to this area is free.


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Thursday Rally Show & Ceremonial Start This year the official start of Kennards Hire Rally Australia will happen at the southern end of Coffs Harbour Jetty Foreshores. Adjacent to the boat launch ramp car park is where it will take place. Gates open at 2.00pm with the first cars to arrive at 3.30pm. You will be able to check out the cars on display, meet the drivers, get selfies and autographs and watch the cars go over the ramp to officially start the weekend of Rally. From the ceremonial start, it’s just a short walk to the Destination NSW Super Special Stage. This is one of WRC’s most picturesque stages. Here, you can sit on the grassy banks and watch cars rev and rally two laps of the course around giant bales, over a jump and through a water splash against the Pacific Ocean backdrop. For people in wheelchairs, there is a raised viewing area beside the grandstand. And for everyone, there will be multiple outlets for food and drinks. Gates open at 3.30pm. Issue 48


Now, to Rally When not in the service park, drivers and cars will be out rallying on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Here are some great spectator points at which to catch the action.

Friday Lowanna in the hinterland behind Coffs Harbour has two viewpoints – at Bushman’s Range Road and Moleton Rod. Bushman’s is a fantastic spot to see the cars enter and exit some high-speed corners. The cars follow the power lines up the fast forestry roads where they climb to the top of the ridge. At Moleton, there is a large area to view from. The cars appear from the bush on a fast shire road, keep right onto Moleton Road then a short straight to a left-right combination of 90deg, bends.


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Super Special Stage After the day in the field, it’s time to return to Coffs Harbour for the second Super Special Stage at the Jetty Foreshores. Gates open at 4.00pm.

Saturday This day’s action takes place in the Nambucca Valley and at Raleigh International Raceway. The Nambucca Valley is a favourite route for many drivers. Fast roads through picturesque farm fields, tight turns and views of spectators cheering them on are inspiring motivations as much as the competition itself. Here are three places to choose from... North Arm Drivers negotiate a fast left bend on gravel across bridge then a great 90° right corner on tarmac. You are close to the action, and some iconic rally photos have been taken here. Site viewing distance is 300m in length

Simpson Ridge This site offers viewing of the cars arriving on gravel through a fast left then right bend then a hard right hander onto bitumen with blinding acceleration moving away from the site. This point is very open, with very few trees to block the view. Talarm Arm This site offers a good open viewing area. The cars come towards the point around a right turn on bitumen to a 90° left turn past the spectator site then onto gravel into a sweeping left turn and away from the point. Raleigh International Raceway This site is set in a natural amphitheatre. There are great views of the entire stage layout, where you can see the start, middle and finish of each car run. There is plenty of shade in the spectator area, which makes it a family-friendly spectator point.

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Rock & Roll on Saturday Night Those who remember the 70s music scene will most likely remember the Kiwi/Aussie band Dragon. Their upbeat and very popular hit songs; April Sun in Cuba, And Rain and Are You Old Enough are sure to bring back memories for many and introduce the younger generation to their great music. And if you feel like swaying, bopping and hopping... feel free. Supporting Dragon will be Coffs Coast singer songwriter 19-year-old Kailey Pallas. She has been playing to live audiences since she was six years old and shared the stage with performers including; Glenn Shorrock, Sir John Rowles, Mental As Anything, The Radiators, Dean Ray, Shannon Noll and Daryl Braithwaite.


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Kailey’s sounds are a blend of soulful, bluesy tones and she has the ability, range and experience to go between a mix of genres from pop, jazz, country, rock and soul. But wait, there’s more. Father and sons trio, D’ Boyzos (Pete, Sam and Lee Dyball) will be performing their own modern/golden music style that has won them fans at festivals and music venues throughout north coast new South Wales, particularly in their home town, Coffs Harbour. All three performances will be held at Pedders Rally Central on Saturday night. If you are an ‘Ultimate Get me Everywhere’ ticket holder, you’re in luck. The concert is free.

Now, back to the Rally course

Sunday Two roadside options and the iconic Wedding Bells State Forest are today’s choices. Bucca This is a new site on the corner of Shelter and Bruxner Par Rds. The cars approach on gravel then to a 90° left hand turn on the bitumen of Bruxner Park Road. Central Bucca On Mardells Road, you will hear the cars approaching and see them appear on two crests as they come toward you in this open forest area. They will pass the spectator point at speed before going downhill into a sweeping left then right.

Wedding Bells State Forest This stage hosts WRC’s Wolf Power Stage, the last stage of the event and the 2019 season. The stage is tight and fast with two spectacular jumps and water splash to thill onlookers as they make their last minute dash to the finish. The facilities here are perhaps the best of all rally stages which makes the location very popular with families and fans. At the visit NSW Forests jump, a large marquee, grandstand, toilets and food outlets are available. Inside the marquee are chairs, free sunscreen, water and Children’s Corner with activities to keep kids entertained (supervised by parents). At the viewing area near the water splash there will be corporate hospitality and a range of food and beverage outlets and a big screen to catch the live action around the stage from on the ground and from the air. To get to Wedding Bells, you will need to allow time as spectators may only gain access via a free bus service. You can park just off Bucca Road and from there shuttle busses operate to and from the spectator site. At the end of the day, Wedding Bells is where the podium presentations and celebrations are staged. Be sure to stick around to see who is crowned as the 2019 World Rally Champions.

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This promises to deliver a fast, thrilling and exciting climax to this year’s World Rally Championships.

The Battle for the Podium So, just who is in the running to take home the title of World Rally Champion driver for 2019? At the time of writing, post Rally Turkey, Citroen drivers Sebastien Ogier and Esapekka Lappi finished one, two on the podium with Hyundai’s Andreas Mikkelesen in third position. Current leader in the WRC Drivers Championship, Ott Tanak had a disastrous rally, finishing in 16th place. Now, with the top three drivers separated by only 30 points, and only two more rallies between now and when the teams arrive here, it may well be that the title is decided on Coffs Coast in the Kennards Hire Rally Australia. We certainly hope so.

Ott Tanak

Sebastien Ogier

Thierry Neuville

Hayden Paddon

By the time this magazine is printed Rally GB (3 to 6 October) will have been run and won so keep watch just who performs best to stand on the podium and earn the points. The top 10 drivers’ standings as at 30 September are as follows:POSITION






Ott Tanak





Sebastien Ogier





Thierry Neuville





Andreas Mikkelsen





Kris Meeke

Great Britain




Jari-Matti Latvala





Teemu Sunninen





Esapekka Lappi





Elfyn Evans

Great Britain




Dani Sordo




Similar to the battle for the podium, the fight for forth is also very close with only 22 points separating seven drivers. And one more driver to watch not in the top 10 is New Zealander, Hayden Paddon. After missing out on a team position this year, M-Sport Ford has invited Hayden and co-driver John Kennard to take command of the Ford Fiesta WRC for the season finale. No doubt his loyal fans from across the Ditch will once again get right behind their favourite rally man as much as Hayden will be driving with passion for them.


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A final word or two In 2018, media coverage of the event was extensive and wide reaching. Around 250 media representatives from around the world reported, photographed and broadcast coverage of the event. The live telecast was watched world-wide by over 88 million people - priceless coverage showcasing the excitement and beauty of Coffs Coast. Last year, Forestry Corporation NSW conducted a random sample survey of over 600 visitors at the Wedding Bells stage and found; almost 30% of spectators were from Coffs Harbour/Bellingen, another 34% were from elsewhere in NSW, 25% were interstate visitors and international visitors accounted for 11%. Great news for the economy of Coffs coast. It seems that Monte Carlo and Coffs Coast have much in common. So be sure to mark 14 to 17 November in your diary and join in the excitement, colour, action and entertainment of world class motor sport at the Kennards Hire Rally Australia. To check out spectator locations, times of stage runs and entertainment and to book your ticket, visit


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The ‘New’ C.ex Coffs International Stadium

Where Champions Play

Eighteen months after the start of reconstruction, the ‘new’ C.ex Coffs International Stadium was officially launched on 7 September and is now fully open for business.


or a many years the venue has earned a reputation of having one of the best green keeping teams and playing fields in the country. And rightly so. The main playing field in the stadium is the envy of many capital city venues. Visiting players from cities and towns and across the country and some from overseas regularly express surprise and praise for the carpet-like surface. Now, the new and refurbished facilities overlooking the fields in and around the stadium complement and enhance one another. This is an outstanding example of how the sum of the parts is greater than the whole.

Council, the venue and surrounding fields have the ability to cater for major sports like; Australian Rules football, football (soccer), rugby league, rugby union, cricket, Oztag, touch football, hockey and baseball. Some require oval playing configurations, others rectangular. No problem. Community and school sporting competitions that require multiple setups for various disciplines can also be comfortably accommodated. Mr Heather said, “Since the official opening, we have received significant numbers of enquiries and bookings from a wide cross section of sporting clubs throughout the region and beyond”.

According to Coffs Harbour City Council’s project leader, Nikki Greenwood the result is a tribute to the teams of highly skilled men and women, who collaborated and worked tirelessly to plan, design, construct and fit-out what is now arguably the best multi-sport venue in regional Australia.

Hosting major sporting events and performances like the Elton John concert scheduled to play at the stadium in February next year, make a significant contribution to the local economy and provide the opportunity to promote the C.ex Coffs International Stadium and Coffs Coast to people near and far.

Unlike many sporting venues built to cater for a single sport, the C.ex Coffs International Stadium and Coffs Coast Sport and Leisure Park have the flexibility and facilities to host a wide range of sports. According to Daniel Heather, Section Leader-Stadium and Major Events for Coffs Harbour City

When planning the changes and additions to the venue, high priority was also given to accessibility, ambience and design. As this is the Coffs Harbour Airport magazine, a quick plug. The drive between the airport and the stadium is six minutes or less depending on traffic. Enough said. From a patron’s perspective, especially for people with disabilities the facilities exceed those prescribed by the Building Code of Australia. Wide paths, ramps to the grandstands, two lifts from ground level to the concourse

South Grandstand


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level of the north and south grandstands and an internal lift in the central grandstand to the upstairs function suites make access convenient for all patrons. For people in wheelchairs there are a number of wide spaces set among the ground level seating areas to enjoy ring-side views of the playing arena. All seating in the grandstands is spring loaded self-folding making for easier access and exit. Additional features include various height counters in service areas, hearing augmentation and loops and colour coding of the grandstands to help patrons navigate the venue. The feel and ambience of the three grandstands and facilities showcase the cultural links with our indigenous heritage and the natural and urban environment of Coffs Coast. The notable and striking feature in the Central Grandstand is the carpet. Designed by Gumbaynggirr artist Brentyn Lugan the art is part of the ‘Water Yuludara’ collection, collaboration between Milliken Ontera (carpet manufacturer), Saltwater Freshwater Arts Alliance and the National Aboriginal Design Agency. The rich, earthy colours and monochrome patterns reaching out from the carpet centre are continued upstairs to the hall ways and multi-use corporate suites overlooking the arena.

Media/Officials suites

There are numerous anecdotes that deserve to be told of the people and organisations who contributed to making the new C.ex Coffs International Stadium a reality, but our space is limited. However, if you obtain a copy of the October edition of Coffs Coast Focus you will discover more of the people behind this epic project. Here, the images proudly showcase some of the new facilities and we invite you to visit the venue to see and experience for yourself, the best regional multi-sport complex in regional Australia, the C.ex Coffs International Stadium. And if you wish to book facilities for your next event or function, call 6648 4000 or visit www.coffs and follow the links > Community & Recreation > Sports Facilities > C.ex Coffs International Stadium.

Food & Beverage Service Areas

Official Opening ‘Kick-Off’

The Gumbaynggirr artworks and stories have been continued throughout the venue. Two outside water fountains, furniture, pathway stencils and etchings on windows designed by artists Uncle Tony Hart and Brentyn Lugnan remind visitors of the connections and importance of caring for country. Either side of the central grandstand, the colours of the north (blue) and south (green) grandstands reflect the Coffs Coast’s sub-tropical environment. The soothing tones and hues of the colours selected by local designers Kylie Mackay and Kristie Peel from Two Birds Design mirror the verdant hinterland World Heritage rainforests and the sapphire seas and waterways of the Solitary Islands Marine Park and Pacific Ocean. The blue and green colour themes on the building

Grandstand seating and team bench

exteriors are also carried throughout each grandstand – public toilets, change rooms and meeting rooms. These distinct colour themes also help stadium staff guide spectators, players, officials and media to their respective areas.

The Building an Epic Stadium for the Future project had many partners that deserve to be acknowledged. Funding – The Australian Government via the Building Better Regions Fund and Coffs Harbour City Council Project Team – Coffs Harbour City Council, APP (project and infrastructure specialists), Lipman (construction) Contributions – C.ex Group, Cricket Australia, Australian Football league, Key Employment and Infracraft (joinery) Designers – Hassell, DAR Architects and Two Birds Design and Over 50 contractors, sub-contractors and suppliers many of which are local Coffs Coast businesses Thank you one and all.

Gumbaynggirr design incorporated in water fountains and facilities

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Cultural and Civic Space Project The Coffs Harbour Cultural and Civic Space is an exciting project that will create a vibrant new hub in the heart of Coffs. The final design is now under development and looks set to seamlessly blend Coffs’ unique environmental factors, including the sea, the harbour, the fig tree and the sense of space. The project has been planned with the intention of bringing the Coffs community together. The space will create a vibrant community precinct in the heart of the city and include the following features:

• A new multi-purpose cultural and civic hub at 23 to 31 Gordon Street, in the heart of Coffs Harbour; • A new Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery with three times the space of the current gallery; • A new Coffs Harbour Regional Museum with more than 2.5 times the space of the current museum;

• A new, much more spacious, Harry Bailey Memorial Library with extra public computers, a digital creative studio, local and family history space and meeting rooms; • Council offices and chambers, which means council staff who are currently located across two buildings will be able to work together and the public can easily access all council services in the one central location;

• Indoor and outdoor event spaces and multi-purpose rooms, which will also be available for hire; • A co-working space - perfect for freelancers, sole traders and small businesses; • A rooftop garden; • 400,000 visitors per annum1; • An $8.5 million uplift in tourism spend 2 1. Source: Coffs Harbour City Council estimates 2. Source: .id The Population Experts’ report: “Economic, cultural and social benefits of the Coffs Harbour Cultural and Civic Space”

Coffs Harbour. Image: Seen Australia


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Schematic design of proposed Cultural & Civic Space

To assist the Coffs community with ensuring it has access to accurate information about the Cultural and Civic Space Project Coffs Harbour City Council has launched a new website – heartofcoffs., and a Facebook page - @ heartofcoffs.The website and Facebook page contain important project updates and answers to frequently asked questions and will ensure the community continues to be updated on all aspects of the plan.

Having proceeded through the schematic design phase, Coffs Harbour City Council is now procuring consultants for detailed design phase and construction and is progressing with the sale of four council assets - Rigby House, Castle Street Administration Building, Rose Avenue Commercial Offices and the Coffs Harbour Regional Museum. A condition of sale of these assets will be that Council leases back the sites until the new Cultural and Civic Centre Space is complete. The development application for 23 to 31 Gordon Street has also been lodged with the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment and a separate demolition DA has been lodged with Council. Issue 48


Fire Fighting from the Air In July this year, the NSW Government purchased a specially modified Boeing 737 Large Air Tanker (LAT) from Coulson Aviation (USA) to equip the NSW Rural Fire Service with year round flexible aerial fire fighting capabilities and a ten year contract to operate the aircraft. With the ongoing drought and early start to the bush fire season, this has proved crucial in helping tackle recent and current fires around Tenterfield, Armidale and Glen Innes. These factors contributed to the NSW Rural Fire Service repositioning their aerial fire fighting equipment and personnel to Coffs Harbour Airport. With its bright red and white livery, and number 8 painted on the tail, the Boeing 737 Fireliner Large Aerial Tanker (LAT) was easy to recognise. However, its smaller twin prop team-mate, an Aero Commander less so, yet together they play a vital role in combating bushfires especially in remote and rough terrain. Normally stationed at RAAF Base Richmond near Sydney, the Boeing 737 can reach most parts of New South Wales in one hour. However, this means each mission can take up to three hours from take-off, fire-bombing, return to base, refuel and replenish supplies and take-off. By repositioning these resources closer to the fire, the operations are more efficient and effective. At the height of the fires on the New England Tableland air crews were able to complete up to six missions per day from Coffs Harbour Airport. However, not all regional airports have the capacity to host fire fighting aircraft. The length of the runway, suitable parking for aircraft and support equipment, refuelling services, access to water and qualified ground handling staff are some of the requirements. Fortunately, Coffs Harbour Airport meets these criteria. One of the Boeing 737 Fireliner captains, Jonas Doherty stressed that the task of effectively battling bushfires is very much a team effort between; on-ground fire fighters, aircraft support staff and the two air crews.

Jonas Doherty, Fireliner Captain (L) Chief Pilot, Travis Adams (R)


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The state of the fire and the precise location of where aerial bombing is required are determined by the ground based fire fighting supervisor. This is relayed to the aerial attack supervisor and pilot in the Aero Commander (or Bird-dog as it is often called) who fly reconnaissance sorties over the fire ground and liaise between the ground team and the pilots in command of the 737 Fireliner. Before commencing a bombing run, the Bird-dog crew prepare tactics taking into consideration a number of factors including; wind velocity, direction and turbulence, fire intensity, visibility, terrain, hazards such as towers and power lines, access and egress routes, air traffic in the vicinity and location of ground crews. This is often followed by the Bird-dog making a test run while the Fireliner pilots circle above and watch in preparation for their bombing run. And, depending on the prevailing conditions, the Bird-dog may even lead the LAT through the bombing run separated by only 300 to 650 metres, flying as close as 50 metres above ground level at around 135 knots (around 250km per hour.). On other occasions, the Bird-dog may fly the bombing run leaving a smoke trail for the LAT to follow, or the LAT will do a solo run. The aim of this coordinated team approach is to enhance the accuracy, efficiency and safety of fire fighting operations – on the ground and in the air. Flying a heavily laden 737 jet aircraft so slow and so low to the ground in extreme conditions requires a significant amount of training, skill and experience and some might say, courage. Fireliner Captain, Jonas Doherty appears to have all of these and more. Since 2005, he has been fighting fires from the air in the Unites States. In 2015 and 2016 he ventured south to Australia as a Bird-dog pilot before returning to the US to train and qualify to fly the McDonnell Douglas DC 10 Air Tanker. Then last year, Captain Doherty joined Coulson Aviation and gained accreditation to fly the Boeing 737 Fireliner LAT. The aircraft made its first mission in Australia after a 100,000 man hours modification to suit Australian conditions and now has the capacity to carry fire fighting retardants and up to 72 passengers. This arrangement allows the New South Wales Rural Fire Service to quickly reposition equipment and personnel closer to areas in need of this support. Unlike Regular Passenger Transport (RPT) planes with sophisticated on-board computer systems to assist control the aircraft, flying the Fireliner LAT is almost a totally hands-on task. Pilots of fire fighting aircraft need high level situational awareness and hand-eye coordination with experience using the control stick and rudders to fly the plane. So each year, Coulson Aviation pilots must undergo medical checks, successfully complete flight simulator and actual flight training in various terrains and attend fire fighting and emergency exercises training.

Taxiing out for another mission past passenger aircraft

Replenishing fire retardant

On the way to another mission from Coffs Harbour Airport

Rural Fire Services Large Aerial Tanker dropping fire retardant

Replenishing fire retardant and checking engines and fuselage Issue 48


Captain Doherty considers the Large Aerial Tanker akin to driving a work truck. His job is to help ground crews extinguish and control bush fires and deliver fire fighting teams to wherever they are needed. He also believes it is a privilege to be given the keys to a multi-million dollar Boeing 737, a Coulson company fuel card and the responsibility to collaborate with fire fighting crews, airport and aircraft support staff and other fire fighting pilots and their aircraft. He said, “Our aim is to combat the growing threat of bush fires to people, property, flora and fauna and the New South Wales economy.” And if his smile is anything to go by, he is exceedingly passionate and devoted to his job, like the men and women of the NSW Rural Fire Service.

Replenishing fire retardant

FACTS & FIGURES: NSW Rural Fires Service Boeing 737 Fireliner Large Aerial Tanker Primary role - firebombing ✈ Two pilot crew ✈ 15,142 litre retardant capacity – water, retardant and gel ✈ RADS-XXL/2 constant flow firebombing system ✈ Cruise speed (loaded) up to 850km/h ✈ Bombing run speed (loaded) 250 km/h ✈ 33m length, 31.2m wingspan ✈ Typical cruise altitude (loaded) 8,250m ✈ Lowest altitude on the bombing run, 50m above terrain

Boeing 737 Fireliner Onboard storage tanks

✈ Typical runway required 1,950m – Coffs Harbour runways is 2088m ✈ Up to 61,700kg gross weight ✈ 2 x 9,100kg thrust CFM 56-3 turbo fan engines ✈ Jet-A1 fuel consumption up to 3,400 litres/hr. ✈ 2+ fire agency radios, satellite tracking. ✈ Turnaround time 15 to 20 minutes from landing, refuelling and refilling with retardant and take-off

Ground crew preparing fire retardant

Smoke from Tenterfield fires from Sawtell Headland


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Issue 48




Aussie band The Teskey Brothers are making waves with their new album Run Home Slow. Bass player Brendon Love gave us the goss about all things tunes and touring for The Teskey Brothers.

Photo - Credit Nick McKinlay

Tell us how Run Home Slow differs from your first album, Half Mile Harvest? Run Home Slow is a more mature effort than our previous album. We really went deeper on this one in many ways. The songs are more personal and we tried to move out of our comfort zone with arrangements and instrumentation, just trying to push our boundaries in any way we could. We did this by taking more time to write and record, letting each track evolve in a natural way and as a result we ventured into new genres and styles.

You're renowned for your laidback soul sounds. Where do you draw your musical inspiration from? We all have diverse influences but the one thing we all have in common is a love for soul music. We love the greats like Otis Redding, Sam Cooke, Marvin Gaye, Aretha Franklin and Nina Simone. A lot of our approach to playing live comes from listening to old blues albums.

You guys are VIC locals. Tell us how you all got involved in music and how the band was formed? We all grew up in the same town. I lived next door to Sam (guitar) and Josh Teskey (vocals, guitar), and Liam (Gough, drums) wasn’t far up the road. We all started playing gigs in our teens. In our various bands we would play at the same gigs most weekends and eventually the four of us joined together as the current line-up in 2006. We’ve been playing gigs as The Teskey Brothers ever since.


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Where do you enjoy performing the most? It’s always a thrill to play anywhere overseas. We always pinch ourselves that our music has made its way abroad. We’ve had great fun in North America, UK and Europe, especially The Netherlands. To touch down in these countries and have an audience show up is amazing. We always love to play in Melbourne, too. It’s a great vibe to play in our hometown, a special feeling.

What can fans expect from your upcoming shows? We’ve stepped our live show up. We like to try and keep the feeling as intimate as possible while still putting on a memorable and moving show. There will be new songs from Run Home Slow as well as our favourites from Half Mile Harvest. We’ve been touring with a seven-piece band, including brass and keys.

What's your favourite track from the new album and why? My favourite is ‘Sunshine Baby’. Stylistically, it’s a bit of a detour from the rest of the album, but it’s a fun song and hopefully people enjoy the detour. It’s a good example of not being afraid to follow were our curiosities lead us. Josh had a great melody and I had some jazzy-sounding chords and once we started to work on the track we soon realised it had to be done in this nostalgic, old-time way. I also enjoyed learning to play it on banjo and ukulele. We were listening to Louie Prima’s ‘I Wanna Be Like You’ from The Jungle Book a lot while recording the track. Hopefully some of that magic made its way through!

It's safe to say your tracks are soothing and very easy to listen to. What do you hope to achieve with your music? I love albums. I obsess over them. I break them down and try and figure out their inner workings. There are so many albums that have moved me in ways I can’t figure out. There’s a kind of magic that comes together that’s greater than the sum of the parts. It goes beyond the technical side of things and music theory. I create music with that same obsession and passion I have when I listen to it. We hope to create music that makes people feel the same way as music makes us feel. I really hope that our music can be enjoyable long into the future.

And you've just toured the USA. Which destinations were on the schedule? We were in the US supporting Tash Sultana. We couldn’t wait to play at the famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado. It’s a magical outdoor venue wedged between two giant red rock formations. We also played at The Greek Theatre in LA and Ryman Auditorium in Nashville on that tour – it was surreal!

We hear you have some high profile fans. What would you say is the most memorable experience you've had as a band so far? It was cool to hear that Chris Hemsworth is a fan of the band. Since we were young we’ve loved going to Bluesfest. We were lucky enough to perform there in 2018. We had an amazing response from the audience and there was a real electric feel to the show. At one point I noticed Chris Hemsworth and his buddy Matt Damon in the crowd. It was pretty surreal! Some of the guys got to meet them backstage after the show. It just gets crazier and crazier. Another memorable experience and milestone for us was selling out our show at The Forum in Melbourne. We’ve seen so many artists we admire play on that stage so to be up there playing music with my friends to a sold-out room was an incredible feeling.

Photo Credit Lisa Businovski

The TESKEY BROTHERS new album RUN HOME SLOW is out now thanks to Ivy League Records.

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CH R I ST M AS FOO D A N D W I N E ... the guide to perfect pairings

‘Tis the season to be merry and we all know that good wine is a pivotal part of the perfect Christmas table. “When you pair the right wine with your menu, it really heightens the flavours of both the food and the wine itself,” explains Christine Ricketts, Cellar Director at Cellarmaster’s. Here, Christine shares her top tips for getting your festive flavours right. Lamb & Cabernet Sauvignon The mint and herb flavours of a Cabernet Sauvignon, particularly from the Coonawarra region in South Australia, make the red wine the ultimate pairing with lamb - especially if you’re serving the meat with a traditional mint sauce. Wine to try: The Ridge Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Ham & Sauvignon Blanc The traditional Christmas ham tends to be a mix of salty and sweet flavours, and possibly some heat if English Mustard is used. A Sauvignon Blanc is the ultimate pairing, as the acid of the wine will offset the saltiness in the meat. Sauvignon Blanc’s fruit-driven flavours will also enhance the meat’s sweetness whilst the medium alcohol of this wine style balances the heat from the mustard. Wine to try: Ribbon Hills Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Sparkling Shiraz & Turkey Sparkling red wine is one of the most unique sparkling styles in the world, originally a French invention but now championed by Australian winemakers. A sparkling Barossa Shiraz with rich, ripe fruit flavours enhances the saltiness of the turkey while the sweetness of the cranberry sauce complements the wine’s fruitiness. Wine to try: Teusner Barossa Mc Sparkling Shiraz 2010


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Seafood & Riesling or Pinot Gris If you are serving a meaty fish such as salmon, pair it with Pinot Gris, as the wine’s acidity balances the oily richness of the fish. When it comes to prawns or calamari, you can’t go wrong with a crisp, Australian Riesling. The wine’s zingy and crisp citrus flavours will balance the delicate meat. Wine to try: Mockingbird Hill Clare Valley Riesling

Roast Pork & Pinot Noir Salty, flavourful roast pork has its perfect match in Pinot Noir, as the delicate red wine with its characteristically mushroomy, dark berry and smoky flavours elevate the essences of the meat. Wine to try: Optica Geometric Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir 2017

BBQ & Rosé BBQ meats, including sausages, are best enjoyed with a dry Rosé, as the acidity will balance the meaty, fatty flavours. If you prefer a red wine, a medium bodied Merlot is the ultimate choice, as the flavour won’t be too overpowering. Wine to try: Blood Brother Republic Mclaren Vale Rosé 2017

Prosecco & Cheese Prosecco is of course fabulous to enjoy on their own throughout the silly season, but is the perfect wine to enjoy with a cheese platter. The carbonation helps break down the coating of butterfat that cheese leaves on the palate, reducing clashes and leaving a clean taste in the mouth. Wine to try: Stefano De Pieri Di Qualita Prosecco

Mince Pies or Christmas Pudding & Tawny The pastry of the mince pies offsets the richness of the tawny port, while the fruitiness of the wine goes beautifully with the dried-fruit flavours of this traditional dessert. Wine to try: Dorrien Estate “old Contemptibles” Barossa Valley Tawny 500ml

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