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Byron Shire
September 21, 2023

Alive and wild again 

Latest News

Tweed Council seeks businesses to join it’s rail trail ‘Connect Program’ 

Paying for the maintenance and providing an engaging visitor experience for the Tweed section of the Northern Rivers Rail Trail is a key aspect of Tweed Shire Council’s (TSC) Connect Program. 

Other News

Response to NRRC

The NRRC, shoving it down unwanted throats, just like despots. Sadly, I take the view that planning changes are inevitable....

A record collector’s dream

Record collectors and sellers will fill the Bangalow Moller Pavilion this weekend for the inaugural Northern Rivers Record & Music Market. Stall holders from Queensland and New South Wales will present over 10,000 vinyl records and CDs from pop to hard rock and more for collectors to add to their record stacks!

Interview with The Cat Empire

The Cat Empire have unveiled a brand-new era for the band, with legacy members Felix Riebl and Ollie McGill breathing new life into the band’s DNA as they welcome a wonderful collective of musicians.

Cycling race in Lismore this weekend to raise money for Westpac Rescue Helicopter

Whether it is getting on the track or watching the cyclists there are plenty of ways to get on board with the Lismore 2023 – Byron Bay Cycle Club Road Race this Sunday 24, September in Lismore’s CBD.

Partial closure of Wollumbin Street bridge from Sept 25

Tweed Shire Council is urging motorists to plan ahead and seek alternative routes between the CBD and South Murwillumbah for up to four weeks from 25 September when essential works to upgrade the town’s main sewer main are undertaken.

Young farmer forging ahead

Despite growing up in Sydney, James Daaboul says he has always been drawn to the idea of living on the land. A couple of years ago he turned that dream into a reality, leaving behind a stable job as a set builder and carpenter for greener pastures in the Northern Rivers.

Vicki in her ‘Barbie trailer’


By Vivienne Pearson

Vicki Veranese is back, refreshed and ready to offer her raw food to all.

After closing her Byron Bay retail store, Alchemia, Vicki was in need of rest and rejuvenation.

‘I was burned out but now I’m renewed and finding my niche,’ says Vicki. ‘The joy is back and Alive and Wild has matured along with me.’

Vicki first discovered raw food when diagnosed with Grave’s Disease. And it wasn’t just the health benefits she loved. ‘Raw food is great food porn,’ she laughs. Since learning the ins and out of raw food, she has offered her knowledge and food in various guises and, even now, Alive and Wild is multi-faceted.

First up is Pantry Boxes – a collection of nut cheeses, crackers and sweet treats to supplement whatever fresh food you have gathered. ‘You might have all this fantastic produce from the farmers market, but what do you put it on?’ was the question Vicki asked herself when creating the boxes.

Then there are picnic platters. For a special occasion, dinner or party, these will meet all your savoury and sweet raw-food needs. Platters can be dips and cracker based, sushi or wrap laden, and/or salad fuelled.

If you want to try Vicki’s food, or are simply keen to say hello after not seeing her since Alchemia closed, head to the Byron Artisan Market. Each Saturday evening in Railway Park, Vicki sets up with her commercial-kitchen-grade trailer. ‘It’s my Ken and Barbie trailer fantasy come true!’ she says.

You might be fortunate enough to come across Vicki’s catering at events – Temple Byron are among those who recommend her – or you could go on retreat with Vicki to benefit not only from her knowledge of food but her consciousness school. ‘I’ve written a book and have a YouTube channel,’ says Vicki.

She also offers an initial range of dental products, developed in conjunction with her husband, Jon, a dentist. Jon is also front-of-trailer at the market. ‘He loves it; he understands the food and is great with people,’ Vicki says.

Vicki describes her food as being so nutrient rich that you don’t need to eat much. I tried Vicki’s macadamia nut cheese on a selection of crackers, pizza base and onion bread, and she is right – the ‘brie’-sized wedges I cut were overly enthusiastic. I also tried a festive-season perfect dessert – a Boozy Tart. The name is no joke: ‘Normally, when you put brandy in cooking, the alcohol is cooked out,’ Vicki says, with her hearty laugh. ‘But this isn’t cooked!’

Alive and Wild: www.aliveandwild.com. Byron Bay Artisan Markets – every Saturday evening October–Easter, 4–9pm. 

Boozy tart

Alive and Wild platter


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