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Byron Bay News

More playground equipment being added at Gaggin Park for all to enjoy

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More playground equipment being added at Gaggin Park for all to enjoy

More playground equipment being added at Gaggin Park for all to enjoy

Two brand new pieces of accessible playground equipment, a wheelchair-accessible carousel and bird nest swing, are being installed at Gaggin Park playground in Suffolk Park this week.

The new equipment is the final stage of Council’s upgrade of the Suffolk Park playground which features an accessible car parking space, accessible toilets, pathways and bubbler, alongside the already popular Fire Engine climbing equipment.

The latest improvements were made possible thanks to $75,000 from the NSW Government’s Everyone Can Play program fund and a further $135,000 investment from Byron Shire Council.

“We are really excited to be installing this fun, safe and age appropriate equipment that’s for everyone, of all abilities,” Council’s Director Infrastructure Services, Phil Holloway said.

“Integrating a more inclusive design into our park upgrades is the objective of the Everyone Can Play funding and it’s what we’re doing at every opportunity now, right across the shire. Our aim is to create spaces where everyone has a chance to participate and have fun.”

For media enquiries contact Council’s Media & Communications Team on 6626 7320.

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Byron Bay News

Creating value for your business through kindness

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'Kind Business: Values Create Value’ by Dr David Cooke.

Creating value for your business through kindness

 

By Samantha Elley

To put the words ‘Kind’ and ‘Business’ together in a title may seem like an anomaly for some, but that is what first time Byron Bay author, Dr David Cooke, has done with his new publication.

‘Kind Business: Values Create Value’ is to be launched this week at The Book Room Byron

“I spent 35 years in the corporate world and don’t think I was a natural fit,” said Dr Cooke.

“So, when I found myself in the last eight years as CEO of a Japanese tech company, I knew I could put my stamp on my corner of the corporate sector and do things a little bit differently.”

Dr Cooke’s way of doing things differently included engaging the people in his organisation and getting their feedback on ideas for the business.

“I found it really helped our organisation to thrive,” he said.

“We are a commoditised sector of the technology industry, selling printing and scanning hardware, and while there are many companies out there selling the same products, we were known as a good company, as we treated our people and our customers kindly.”

What Dr Cooke saw was his business grew and ‘defied gravity’ in what has essentially become a declining industry when it comes to printing.

“We just engaged with people and treated our customers honestly and openly, as it seemed the right thing to do, and lo and behold, we flourished,” he said.

When Dr Cooke retired, he knew he had to write a book on his experiences and Kind Business was born.

“If you design your business to be responsible, treat people and the community well and honestly, you will find commercial value in your business,” said Dr Cooke.

This book is a must read for entrepreneurs, emerging leaders and business executives and can be purchased online or through local bookstores for $29.95.

The book is to be launched at The Book Room Byron, 27 Fletcher Street, Byron Bay on 11th July, 6pm. Bookings can be made here.

 

For more Byron Bay news, click here.

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Explore the Theme ‘Rising’ for Climate Conversations 2025

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Installation view of the 2023 Climate Conversations project ‘Mending & Tending: Art that works for Nature’, 2023. Photo by Jaka Adamic.

Explore the Theme ‘Rising’ for Climate Conversations 2025

 

Byron Shire Council invites expressions of interest from artists to explore the theme ‘Rising – the growing urgency and consciousness to meet climate challenges.’

“We are thrilled to announce ‘Rising’ as the theme for Climate Conversations 2025,” said Sarah Harvey, Gallerist at Lone Goat Gallery. “This biennial initiative invites Northern Rivers artists to collaborate with the community, exploring ways to adapt, reorganise, and evolve in response to climate change through the arts.”

Harvey emphasised the timeliness of the theme: “With soaring temperatures, swelling oceans, and escalating natural disasters, Earth’s fragile equilibrium is at risk. ‘Rising’ embodies the necessity to embrace our roles as environmental stewards and to unite in collective action.”

Artists are encouraged to submit innovative project proposals that engage the community and align with the theme. Selected artists will receive a $5,000 fee to develop new work, up to $2,000 for public program delivery, and a one-month exhibition at Lone Goat Gallery in 2025.

Climate Conversations, an initiative by Lone Goat Gallery and Byron Shire Council, encourages artists to undertake climate-related projects. Proposals that incorporate creative collaborations and participatory activities to stimulate important community discussions about climate change are highly encouraged.

“Projects with a strong community focus will be given special consideration,” Harvey noted. “Our goal is to support artists in fostering new ways of thinking and talking about climate change through art.”

Submission Details:

  • Theme: Rising – the growing urgency and consciousness to meet climate challenges
  • Support: $5,000 artist’s fee, up to $2,000 for public programs, one-month exhibition
  • Eligibility: Open to all Northern Rivers artists, art producers, and artist teams
  • Deadline: Expressions of interest are now open

Interested artists can apply via the Byron Shire Council’s website or visit here for more information.

Join us in this vital artistic endeavour to inspire, engage, and challenge our community towards a sustainable future.

 

For more Byron Bay news, click here.

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Byron Writers Festival 2024 Program Announced

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Byron Writers Festival 2024 Program

Byron Writers Festival 2024 Program Announced

 

Australia’s largest regional writers’ festival, the Byron Writers Festival, has announced its full program for 2024, scheduled for August 9-11. This year’s theme, ‘From the ground up,’ will be explored by 160 writers, including notable figures such as Trent Dalton, Richard Flanagan, Jane Harper, Melissa Lucashenko, Charlotte Wood, Bruce Pascoe, Bob Brown, Julia Baird, Nam Le, Ali Cobby Eckermann, Lynette Noni, Bryan Brown, Tony Birch, William McInnes, Chigozie Obioma, Caoilinn Hughes, Tayi Tibble, Meena Kandasamy, Louise Milligan, Kim Williams, Kerry O’Brien, and many others.

The festival, set in the picturesque Bundjalung Country in Bangalow, near Byron Bay, offers writing workshops, book launches, a children’s program, and events across the Northern Rivers region. Jessica Alice, the incoming Artistic Director, curated the 2024 program, emphasising the theme’s focus on community mobilisation and new beginnings.

International and Bestselling Authors

Among the international guests are Chigozie Obioma, a two-time Booker Prize finalist; Caoilinn Hughes, a significant Irish literary voice; Leo Vardiashvili, a UK-based novelist; Meena Kandasamy, an Indian activist; and award-winning Maori poet Tayi Tibble.

Featured Conversations and Panels

  • Trent Dalton in conversation with Julia Baird
  • Charlotte Wood and Ailsa Piper on grief and forgiveness
  • Richard Flanagan on his memoir Question 7
  • David Marr on colonial myths
  • Steph Tisdell on writing with humor
  • Crime Writers: Jane Harper, Candice Fox, Matthew Condon, Bryan Brown in conversation with Jennifer Byrne

Memoir and Music

  • Kon Karapanagiotidis‘s Greek kitchen
  • Priya Nadesalingam’s Home to Biloela
  • Nicky Winmar‘s stand against racism
  • Gideon Haigh on his brother’s loss
  • Rebecca Huntley‘s memoir Sassafras
  • Jim Moginie and Kate Ceberano on the music industry
  • Suzie Miller on her play Prima Facie
  • William McInnes‘s memories of Australia
Byron Writers Festival 2024 Program

L-R (Row 1) Tayi Tibble, Trent Dalton, Kate Ceberano, Bob Brown, Meena Kandasamy, Bruce Pascoe. (Row 2) James Bradley, Steph Tisdell, Richard Flanagan, Jennifer Byrne, Chigozie Obioma, Julia Baird.

Climate and Environment

Special events feature Bob Brown, Richard Flanagan, David Lindenmayer, Ali Cobby Eckermann, and Sue Higginson discussing environmental topics. Other speakers include James Bradley, Joelle Gergis, and Daniel Harrison.

Politics and Media

  • Nick Bryant, John Lyons, and Meena Kandasamy on the ‘Mega Election Year’
  • Kim Williams AM and Kerry O’Brien on the ABC’s future
  • Amy McQuire, Louise Milligan, Nick Bryant, and Julianne Schultz on press freedom

Northern Rivers Writers

Over 40 local writers are featured, including Daniel Browning, Mykaela Saunders, Jodi Rodgers, Isabelle Reinecke, Mindy Woods, Annika Johansson, Mandy Nolan, and Rhoda Roberts AO.

Feature Events

Evening events include ‘Bob Brown in Conversation’ with Jan Fran and the festival keynote ‘Gala: From the ground up’. Other events feature William McInnes, Steph Tisdell, Ali Cobby Eckermann, Jim Moginie, and ‘Electric Poetics’ with Tayi Tibble, Meena Kandasamy, Nam Le, Jazz Money, Mitch King, and Nicole Smede.

Young Adult and Kids Programs

YA fiction fans can look forward to appearances by Lynette Noni, Lili Wilkinson, Steph Tisdell, and Graham Akhurst. The Kids Big Day Out program on Sunday morning features presentations by Bob Brown, Kate & Jol Temple, Peter Carnavas, and Matt Stanton, along with StorySpace workshops.

Festival Dates and Tickets

Byron Writers Festival 2024 will take place from August 9-11 at the Bangalow Showground and various venues.

Tickets are now on sale now.

 

For more Byron Bay news, click here.

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