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Byron Shire
December 1, 2022

Cinema Review: Wide Open Sky

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Roller skating, skateboarding and more for Lismore

The ‘Lismore Urban Sports Precinct’ will deliver skateboarding, roller skating, BMX, scootering and sport climbing infrastructure as well as associated recreational infrastructure. 

Other News

Fostering local writing talent

Since 2001, the Byron Writers Festival Residential Mentorship has been inspiring writers on the path to publication. This year saw four writers spend a week in Possum Creek being mentored by Walkley Award-winning journalist and author, Sarah Armstrong.

Tallow wallabies

Further to Maggie Brown’s letter regarding the incident on Tallow Beach of a wallaby having to be shot by...

Floodwaters essential for ecosystem rejuvenation say experts

Along with the human, infrastructure and economic devastation wrought by recent floods, come environmental costs and even benefits.

A community approach to kids’ mental health

Is your local physiotherapist informed about the impacts of natural-disaster-related trauma on 8 to 12-year-olds?

Education shaping up to be a key battleground in NSW election

There is a teacher shortage and both the NSW Greens and Labor are focussing their efforts on highlighting the situation the NSW public education system is in as they campaign for the next NSW election. 

Vibrant and colourful seascapes

David Lane is best known for his vibrant and colourful seascapes, however his ability to capture colour and light...

It’s important to be reminded occasionally of how cinema can elevate and liberate simply by striking a chord that joins us all as human beings. Lisa Nicol’s splendid doco does exactly that.
As Philistine politicians continue to strip funding from arts bodies, national treasures such as Michelle Leonard carry on regardless in their efforts to repel the barbarians from the door. In Michelle’s case, she exposes children in remote and disadvantaged areas of NSW to the wonders of music and, through it, to their own limitless potential. Every year, driving from Brewarrina to Walgett to Lightning Ridge and farther, she auditions scores of school kids for her Moorambilla Voices choir. Those that make the cut are then brought to a camp where they receive intensive training and, critically, formal instruction, before coming together again for the annual Coonamble Festival. Nicol’s camera catches all of the fresh, eager faces, but introduces us more intimately to a handful of the youngsters and their parents. I loved the little Indigenous boy in his blue Origin jersey who has just been taught about music written on the page – ‘now I know all the sharps and… what are the others called?’; the boy who only wants to sing and dance – ‘we tried, but he was never gonna play rugby,’ his mum and dad concede – and who has discovered that there are others like him after all; the girl who needs to be the centre of attention and would like to be a famous country singer; and the inseparable sisters…
At the heart of it all, larger than life, is the exuberant Michelle, repeatedly stressing that learning is a tool that should never be neglected and encouragement the key that should never be ignored. Contrary to the decrees of many limp-wristed educationists, Michelle also insists that competition brings out the best in the boys. She is convinced, and you will be too, that anything is possible. Beautifully shot and edited, this is the sort of movie that moves you to tears of joy. Extraordinary.


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Firefighter injured battling large blaze in vehicle scrap yard

Fire fighters battled explosions and large blaze in a vehicle scrap yard at Trenayr, north of Grafton on Monday.

World AIDS Day – time to end transmission

Over 40 million people have died worldwide of AIDS over the last 41 years and ending the transmission of HIV is the aim of a specialist taskforce being set up by the Federal Government announced today on World AIDS Day 2022. 

Climate change a threat to local Gondwana rainforest mountain frogs

A new Southern Cross University study predicts that two species of mountain frogs located on the NSW/Queensland border are on track to be extinct by 2055.

Ballina council to kick-start waste reduction policies and projects

The Ballina Shire Council has voted unanimously to adopt a newly drafted policy aimed at waste reduction.