Brisbane Comedy Festival 2018

Bigger, funnier than ever before

Feel like you could use a laugh this weekend or any time during the next month? Who couldn’t right? So we're very happy to hear that Brisbane's annual comedy festival is back, and while it's often over-said about annual events  - this year- it really is bigger and better than ever before.
This year's fFestival boasts the city’s largest ever line-up of big Aussie names Aussie and huge international acts. Running February 23 - March 25 the funny men, women and groups from all over the world will bring their best gags to three venues across the city – Brisbane Powerhouse, Brisbane City Hall and SunPAC (just the other side of the city in Macgregor).
Although the opening gala featuring Brisbane favourite Mel Buttle as host, with big local names alongside Matt Okine, Luke Heggie, Becky Lucas, Demi Lardner and a surprise guest has now sold out, you can still get tickets for each of their own gigs (as we went to press), but it's best to be quick.


More Aussie acts to get your ticket buying finger ready for include household names Akmal, Fiona O’Loughlin, Wil Anderson, Celia Pacquola, Dave Hughes, Becky Lucas, Joel Creasey, Lawrence Mooney, Matt Okine, Zoë Coombs Marr, Nazeem Hussain and Tom Gleeson.
The Messenger had a chance to catch Lawrence "Moonman" Mooney doing stand-up last week. As Australia's foremost (only?) Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull impersonator, this is one not to miss.
Leading the pack of international laughter masters are Jim Gaffigan, who will kick off his anticipated Australian and New Zealand tour with his Brisbane debut, Irishmen Jimeoin and Des Bishop, Canadian DeAnne Smith, Englishmen Stephen K Amos and Jeff Green, who will be celebrating 30 years on the comedy circuit with a special show. Also on the bill is beloved Kiwis Cal Wilson and Urzila Carlson, Scottish star Daniel Sloss and American Rich Hall, making his long-awaited return.
With tickets selling fast, if you do happen to miss out on the big international acts or your favourite Aussie comedians we encourage to try some of the up-and-comers. If you've been to any recent local comedy, you'll already know it's of very high standards. Besides, everyone already knows, Aussies are funny buggers.
For those on a budget, the late-night gigs offer bang for buck with cheap-as-chips laughs at the adults only variety show After Hours , a popular festival fixture that promises a mix of local favourites and circuit stalwarts getting loose, trying new material and bringing back some old favourites.
Some of Australia's exciting new voices will tackle close to home topics such as crass takes of Aussie hip hop, absurdist sketches and sharp-witted improvisation. Logie-nominated comic Heath Franklin will earn a new legion of worshippers with his larger-than-life ‘Chopper’ parody in Bogan Jesus.


Of special note is a highly anticipated 90’s sitcom inspired show Yada Yada Yada by comic savants Gillian Cosgriff and  Jude Perl. Playing two shows only (Friday March 16 and Saturday March 17, Yada Yada Yada is a celebration of the best decade in television history - the ’90s Sitcom Special is a journey through what made iconic ’90s sitcoms 'all that'.
The 2018 Brisbane Comedy Festival runs Friday February 23 - Sunday March 25 at the Brisbane Powerhouse, Brisbane City Hall and SunPAC. For more info and tickets visit www.brisbanecomedyfestival.com or call 07 3358 8600.

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Bullying

How to deal with this complex issue

More than 817,000 young Queenslanders returned to school recently. Sadly, it's not always an exciting for our youngest. For victims of bullying, inside and outside of school, it can be a daunting return.
Bullying is a complex issue that can take many forms and as we've seen in the media in recent years, can have tragic circumstances.
While parents may feel it's an issue they have to tackle, and the student themselves feel helpless, recent bullying research shows the need for a greater, national, response to tackle this complex issue.

How should we, as parents and carers respond?

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CALLING ALL QUEENSLANDERS
Win Tickets!

To an unmissable game of Queensland Great vs Queensland Great - A Night with Cameron Smith and JT

On February 23 there's a footy event that will make your maroon blood glow brightly, it’s the clash of Queensland great against Queensland great, at a place where history is forged – it’s the Cameron Smith and Johnathan Thurston Testimonial Match at Suncorp Stadium.
Players like Cameron Smith and Johnathan Thurston come along only once in a lifetime, and when they do, it’s reason to gather. And gather we will when League legends Smith and Thurston will be recognised for their incredible contribution to Rugby League in a special testimonial match to be played ahead of the 2018 season.
Smith’s Melbourne Storm will take on Thurston’s North Queensland Cowboys at their beloved Suncorp Stadium next year. It will be the first time the teams have faced each other since the 2017 NRL Grand Final, in which Smith’s Storm won 34-6 over a Cowboys side playing its second Grand Final in three years, after losing co-captain Thurston to a season-ending shoulder injury in Origin II.
It will also mark the start of Thurston’s final year in the NRL. The match will provide fans with an opportunity to pay tribute to two living legends, and will also be a chance for both Smith and Thurston to thank the fans who have supported them throughout their careers, ahead of what is set to be a memorable season for both.
Proving they're legends off the field as well, Smith and Thurston have announced three charities as official partners for the event, they are the Cowboys Community Foundation supported ‘NRL Cowboys House’, Ovarian Cancer Australia and Prostate Cancer Foundation. Both players’ dedication to Rugby League is matched only by their commitment to giving back to the community so they are thrilled to be able to support these charities with a portion of ticket sales being donated to all three.
So, if you know what it feels like to bleed maroon, and are proud to call Queensland home, then this is the one game you must witness in 2018.
Tickets are available via Ticketek.com.au or 132849. The match will also be broadcast (exclusively) on Fox Sports or you could ...

WIN TICKETS

The Messenger has two double passes to the Cameron Smith and Johnathan Thurston Testimonial Match at Suncorp Stadium. And we want them to go real, maroon blooded, fans.

There are two prizes to win, each with two tickets valued at $29 for the Friday February 23 match at Suncorp Stadium, with kick off at 7pm. The total prize pool is worth $116.

To win a night a with Cameron Smith and JT email comp@northlakesmessenger.com.au
with "I bleed maroon" in the subject line, before 5pm Friday February 16, 2018. Be sure to include your contact details so we can let you you've won.

Good luck!


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WIN! The Manganiyar Seduction

One of the most original and mesmerising live performances on earth is headed for Brisbane... and we'vetickets to win


Unless you've travelled to see this show, you won't have seen anything like this before. The Manganiyar Seduction is a visually activated, musically energised masterpiece, and it's coming to Brisbane for the very first time.

“rapturous... jaw-dropping... buoyant... Compelling...tranquil...”
...is how the production was described by the The New York Times, adding to the chorus of superlatives attributed to the show all over the world. Now, The Manganiyar Seduction will be performed just twice at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre on March 1 and 2, 2018.
During the show, forty musicians are seated in 36 red-curtained cubicles arranged in four horizontal rows stacked on top of the other. The concert begins when a single cubicle lights up and the first singer begins his song. Soon another cubicle lights up and then another - creating a dramatic and astounding crescendo of song and music, mesmerising and transporting audiences to another world.
As the ensemble grows in number and the sound gathers momentum, the skin-pricking climax is heralded by an sumptuous light show as all the pods glow and pulsate along with the musical rhythms in an extraordinary original concept, brilliantly executed.
The Manganiyars are a caste of Muslim musicians wpredominantly settled in the districts of Jaisalmer, Barmer and Jodhpur, in the heart of the Thar Desert, a vast northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent. They traditionally performed for Kings, however over the years their patrons have shifted from Kings to people who could give them a meal. It was in the 1970s that ethno-musicologist, the late Komal Kothari, discovered them and gave them into contemporary performance spaces.
Their repertoire includes ballads about those kings and also Sufi poems written by various mystics. They have songs for birth, marriage, feasts and more, and even though they are classified as folk musicians, their traditional music is classical and it clearly indicates the roots of classical music in India. It is the combination of raw folk with the complexity of classical music that makes them so special.
Director Roysten Abel has reversed the usual practice of using music for theatre, and instead, uses theatre to create magic in music. He describes what he calls, his First Seduction.
“While directing a play in Spain in 2006, I was accompanied by two Manganiyar musicians who formed part of the company. They would follow me and play music in all the places I went, most of the time overlooking the decorum of that space. I would wake up and sleep to their playing over the course of a fortnight, during which time a strange psychological event took place. Having left for Germany to direct another production, I realised that I missed the music so I would call them and ask them to sing over the phone. I was totally seduced.”
“Returning to India filled with inspiration, I wanted to translate this seduction into a physical realm. For some reason, my experience made me think of a red light district, bordering on the burlesque inside my head, heart and body. I thought of windows in Indian palaces where women folk would view ceremonies or processions while unwittingly becoming the subjects of voyeurism themselves. For me, these windows came alive with musicians.”
“I went to Jaisalmer and auditioned a thousand musicians, from whom I selected 45. The Manganiyars were not accustomed to rehearsals and I was attempting to translate an experience into a piece of theatre. We got into the process of understanding and trusting each other over a three-year period before arriving at The Manganiyar Seduction. But even after hearing it a thousand times, it still has the power to seduce me.”
The Manganiyar Seduction will be presented twice only in Brisbane, on Thursday and Friday, March 1 and 1, 2018 at 8pm at the QPAC Concert Hall (adjoining Southbank).
Tickets start at $99, with family priced group tickets available starting at $249, and are available now via
www.qpac.com.au or by calling 136 246.

 

Win!

The Manganiyar Seduction is an incredible show and the Messenger is celebrating its arrival with two awesome prize packs.

Both prize packs, each with four A-Reserve tickets, are for the Thursday 1 March show, 8.00pm at QPAC Concert Hall. The tickets are valued at $114 each, for a total prize pool of $912!

To enter, email comp@northlakesmessenger.com.au with Manganiyar in the subject line and tell us how many cubicles are used in the show.

The two winning entries will each receive four A-Reserve ticket packs valued at $456, so you can take friends or family along.

Get your entries in before Thursday February 26 at 5pm. Correct entries will be chosen at random, don't forget to include your contact details so we can let you you've won.

Good luck!

Privacy: The Messenger complies with the Australian Privacy Act 1988 in safeguarding your privacy. Information submitted by you is used only for purposes of the competition. Your information is not kept on file, collated or distributed in any way.


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New Year, New You... right?

Weight loss myths busted

Here's a startling fact - around 2.3 million Queensland adults headed into the new year overweight or obese.

Every year, a lot of us make resolutions to increase our health while decreasing our waistlines (and other problem areas). But with so much, sometimes conflicting, information out there, how do we sort fact from fiction?
Thankfully Cancer Council Queensland is on the case with CEO Ms Chris McMillan helping us wade through the weight loss myths and misconceptions that could hinder people from losing weight effectively.
“You don’t need a revolutionary New Year’s resolution or dramatic change to your diet to lose weight, or to prevent yourself from gaining more weight,” Ms McMillan said.
“Eating more fruits, vegetables and wholegrains, exercising regularly and staying clear of common myths and misconceptions can make a big difference.
“We have debunked four myths to help get you started.
Myth 1 is that you need to detox after the festive season. The good news is – there is no need for a crash diet in early January because our bodies detox naturally. Our lungs, kidneys, liver, gastrointestinal, and immune system remove toxic substances within hours after we consume them. Instead, focus on limiting unhealthy options and exercising to lose weight.
Myth 2 is that you can eat what you like, as long as you’re exercising. While exercising will assist with weight loss, it’s not the only answer. It’s best to complement regular physical activity with a healthy diet for improved results.
Myth 3 is that you can’t eat carbs at night. Many fad diets push the idea that carbohydrate foods should be cut out to lose weight, especially at night. This is far from the truth. In fact, they’re actually good for controlling our weight. There is strong evidence that eating wholegrains is linked with lower body weight, a slimmer waist, and reduced risk of weight gain.
Myth 4 is that fat makes you fat. Although there are unhealthy fats like saturated and trans fats, not all fat is bad for you. Unsaturated fats are healthy fats and are an important part of a healthy diet. These fats help reduce the risk of heart disease and lower cholesterol levels and can be found in foods like nuts, avocado, fish and olive oil.
Queenslanders should opt for foods that are low in sugar, saturated fat and salt and be sure to include plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, grains, low fat dairy options, and lean proteins.
“The benefits to losing weight are an increased sense of wellbeing, greater health and reduced risk of a range of chronic diseases, including some cancers,” Ms McMillan said.
“Make a commitment to small changes for your health in 2018 – helping you to lose weight, and keep it off in the long term.”
IS BREAKFAST PROTEIN THE SECRET TO WEIGHT LOSS?
Another well-regarded official body, CSIRO has been looking at proteins for breakfast. Could eating more be the key to achieving healthy weight loss? The new Total Wellbeing Diet Protein Balance program focuses on shifting more protein consumption to breakfast.
The report, Protein Balance: New concepts for protein in Weight Management, affirms the benefits of the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet for weight control and reveals that the latest scientific evidence supports eating at least 25 grams of protein at each main meal to control hunger and enhance muscle metabolism.
"The average Australian eats much lower amounts of protein at breakfast, so increasing breakfast protein may help to control eating later in the day," Senior Principal Research Scientist for CSIRO and co-author of the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet, Professor Manny Noakes, said.
"If you find it difficult to control what you eat, a redistribution of protein toward breakfast may be the answer to reducing your waistline without leaving you ravenously hungry and craving unhealthy foods."
The CSIRO report showed that for most Australians, protein intake was skewed towards the evening meal, with only small amounts eaten at breakfast. On average women consumed 11g of protein at breakfast, compared to the male average of 15g.
The report also found that older Australians consumed the least amount of protein at breakfast but needed more protein to prevent muscle loss.
"The scientific evidence supports a higher protein diet, combined with regular exercise, for greater fat loss. Eating at least 25g of protein at main meals can assist with hunger control," Professor Noakes said.
According to the report, Australians get over one third of their dietary protein from low-quality sources such as processed foods, instead of whole protein sources including lean meats, fish, eggs, legumes and dairy.
Adopting a higher protein, moderate carbohydrate, low GI diet is a nutritious way to lose weight and has been scientifically validated for some time, underpinning successful programs such as the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet.
Since launching in 2005, the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet has helped more than half a million Australians lose weight.
"Two in three Australian adults are either overweight or obese, which increases their risk factors for many chronic health conditions," Professor Noakes said.
"With a variety of genetic, lifestyle and personality factors at play, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach to weight loss, but there is a range of healthy ways to lose weight.
"If we're serious about addressing this issue we need to continue developing a wider range of scientifically validated ways for people to lose weight, which is something CSIRO has done successfully over the years.
"Introducing the new Protein Balance program for the Total Wellbeing Diet is another example of that."
The innovation to the Total Wellbeing Diet online program will provide a new approach to the timing of eating protein, which may make a substantive difference for people who want to kick-start a healthier new year.
The Total Wellbeing Diet Protein Balance program includes new recipes that provide 25g of protein into every meal and make weight loss a more nourishing and enjoyable experience.
Cancer Council Queensland's CEO Ms Chris McMillan put it very simply.
“Even if you make just one resolution this year – pledge to lead a healthier lifestyle.”
The Chief Health Officer’s report shows overweight and obese Queensland adults need to collectively lose 35.5 million kilos, an average of 15kg per person, to reach the healthy weight range.
More information about Cancer Council Queensland is available on 13 11 20 or cancerqld.org.au.
To learn more about the new Total Wellbeing Diet Protein Balance program and find out how much protein you need each day to achieve your New Year weight loss resolutions, visit www.totalwellbeingdiet.com


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Best. Summer. Ever.

a guide

Tthis year, we're keeping it (mostly) local with a focus on local food, fashion and travel. Inside the mag this week you'll find

Page 8

  • The Queensland Coast Degustation at Bacchus
  • Summer Sophistication at Olio
  • Queensland to a Tea at Stamford

Page 10

  • White label Noba - fab Bris-brand
  • SunSoaked Swim and Resort - Local high end togs
  • Ugly rashie - A Christmas Tradition

Page 12

  • Suite Summer Staycations
  • Flat Iron Valley
  • Buenos dias, bon Sol
  • Summer lovin'
  • Pacific tastes?
  • Rent an entire tropical island for less than $2k
  • All Abroad


Read Best.Summer.Ever.

Santa is coming to Town

(and she drives a red convertible)

A fun annual Christmas tradition that's been running for 12 years will hit the road this weekend, North Lakes' own Santa Run.
You may not know her name but tireless local Helena Grieg (pictured, and on our cover) has been hitting the streets armed with wrapped lollies bringing Christmas cheer to local kids for over a decade now.
What was once a very localised festive celebration in just a few streets has now grown to cover all of North Lakes, handing out a whopping 40-45 kilograms of wrapped sweets.
Long term residents may remember that the Neighbourhood Watch Santa used to visit on the tray of a flat bed truck. Helena was involved back then but when Neighbourhood Watch disbanded, Helena continued with the support of donations from generous locals and local businesses. Now the team of three people; Helena, Vicki and a Santa (yet to be named) do the run for two days in two cars.
This year's Santa Run is this weekend - Saturday 9th December and Sunday 10th December.
On Saturday in the little red car the team will drive the streets of Freshwater, Crestwood, Eastridge, Woodvale, Shearwater, Greengate and Woodside from 9.30am.
Then on Sunday they will cover all the streets adjoining Endeavour Drive and Bounty Boulevard, Bridgehaven, Hilltop Green, Edenvale, Parkview, Fairway Chase, The Outlook and Mode from 9.30am in both the red car and blue SUV.
The Messenger spoke to Helena ahead of the run. It's a big effort each year for the full time Childcare centre worker, but she persists for the kids.
"It’s a bit of community spirit and I just like seeing the kids smile. People are so happy to see us each year that it puts a smile on our faces too, that’s why we do it,” Helena said.
You'll hear them coming by the festive tunes playing on loudspeaker; tooting car horns and Santa's bell ring ting tingle-ing too. If you hear them and think it's too late to race out to join in (and grab some sweets) - it's not. Like Santa checking his list, the team drive down each street twice, once to to announce their presence, then doubling back to gift out the lollies. Children are of course asked to stay on the footpath at all times. Don't worry, you wont miss out.
If you're reading this before the run and want to help out, the team appreciate any wrapped lollies and cash donations (ssed to buy appropriate lollies). Lolly donations must be individually wrapped and the team suggest Minties, Redskins, lollipops etc.
"This run purely works on community spirit, we couldn't do it without the donations. If you could find it in your hearts to buy a pack of wrapped lollies in your grocery shopping and be happy to part with it , we would absolutely appreciate the support," Helena said.
You can get in touch with Helena via 0427 133 874 or by finding them on Facebook, where you'll also find more information about the run.
www.facebook.com/NorthLakesSantaRun


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Triple M’s Biggest Skin Check today

Free Pop-UP Skin Clinics at Jimmy Rods North Lakes, - Woolloongabba, Oxley, and City

December 1 is the official start of summer. Aussies like to spend a lot of time in the sun, probably too much. It's a good idea to get your skin checked.

So today from 9am to 2pm, Triple M will host the Biggest Skin Check with FREE pop-up skin clinics at Jimmy Rods North Lakes. If you commute but can duck out you'll also find them at Woolloongabba, Oxley, and the City.

The Triple M crew have called in the experts from Montserrat Day Hospital and Doctor Link to give everyone a thorough skin check and to answer any questions. PLUS the Queensland Reds players will be at each location from 1pm to 1.30pm.

Find the free skin checks here::

NORTH LAKES 9am to 2pm - Jimmy Rods - Tenancy 1208, Level 1, Westfield North Lakes, Cnr Anzac Ave & North Lakes Drive
Queensland Reds player Reece Hewat will attend from 1pm to 1.30pm

WOOLLOONGABBA 9am to 2pm - Jimmy Rods - Tenancy A1 at Ivy Terrace, 4 Gibbon St – Wallaby and Queensland Reds player QUADE COOPER will attend from 1pm to 1.30pm
CITY 9am to 2pm - Jimmy Rods Shave Saloon - Tenancy 4, Mezzanine Level, 480 Queen St Queensland Reds player Kane Douglas will attend from 1pm to 1.30pm

OXLEY 9am to 2pm - Jimmy Rods - Shop 3/133 Oxley Station Rd Queensland Reds player Sef Faagase will attend from 1pm to 1.30pm

Look for the Triple M & Montserrat signage will be out front at each location for high visibility and general event signage at each location. There will be private rooms or cubicles set up in each Jimmy Rods store to allow for privacy for each skin check.

Rock patrollers will be armed with refreshments for the queue, and Jimmy Rods will provide discount vouchers for attendees.


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Brisbane, Gold Coast among top holiday destinations for locals

food and dining, sun, island, beach most popular travel experiences

If you haven't made up your mindup about your Chritsmas holiday or wonder where all those jealousy inducing Instagram pics can be taken, new information from agoda reveals we don't have to go too far, Australians almost exclusively stay within the Asia-Pacific region over the Christmas and New Year period.
Agoda's recent Travel and Tech Study found 'food and dining' and 'sun, island, beach' were the two most popular travel experiences for Australian Millennials - and Bali offers all of the above. The popular Indonesian island has grown into a lifestyle destination that caters to the Millennial foodie lifestyle, with cheap yet stylish 'instagramable' cafes, bars and restaurants, set against the backdrop of a tropical island.


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Person Of Interest, Chef Massimo Speroni

The celebrated flavour maker dishes on expat life in SEQ, what he thinks of the local produce and people and what's on the menu this Summer at Bacchus

Big name chefs are no strangers to us Aussies. We have some of best and freshest produce in the world which attracts some of the planet’s most celebrated flavour makers to our shores. Most of us can name a handful of these stars but we often have to travel south to sample their skill on a plate or worse yet, watch along on telly, our tastebuds perpetually unrequited. So it was big news for local epicureans, foodies and us regular mortals who like good food when the Massimo Speroni took up residence as Head Chef at the multi-award winning Brisbane restaurant, Bacchus.
Even for arguably Brisbane's best dining experience, this was a big get. Earlier in the year, fine dining specialist Massimo Speroni flew in direct from two Michelin-starred restaurant San Domenico in Imola Italy where he was Sous Chef. He immediately put his stamp on the local scene with a deft touch we've rarely had in residence locally. Now, nine months later Speroni is once again upping the ante with a creative update to the menu, just in time for summer. The refreshed menu stars Australian seafood, kangaroo, as well as new takes on Italian favourites and some intriguing ingredients.
32 year old Massimo's passion for fine dining began at an early age. Born in the Abruzzo region of Italy near the Adriatic Sea, Massimo was influenced by flavours from the north of the country and throughout the central region around Rome, where he grew up. At San Domenico as Sous Chef, he worked with famed chef (and owner of the establishment) Valentino Marcattilii. He had worked with Chef Marcattiliia as a junior and credits his former mentor for much of his flavour preferences now.


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What's driving Brisbane's high petrol prices?

In December 2014 the Australian Government directed the ACCC to monitor the prices, costs, and profits of unleaded petroleum products in Australia for a period of three years. The results have been released finding local prices exceedingly high.

and how to find the cheapest local fuel

Read the article

The cost of living a decent life

Newstart falls below the Minimum Income for Healthy Living standard - a standard designed to ensure that in addition to material consumption, it allows for a healthy level of social participation.


The Newstart Allowance received by people looking for work falls well below the minimum income required to achieve a basic standard of living – defined as a budget standard – according to a new report by researchers from UNSW Sydney.
The New Budget Standards for Low-Paid and Unemployed Australians Report, compiled by UNSW’s Social Policy Research Centre (SPRC) with support from Catholic Social Services Australia (CSSA), the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) and United Voice, found that the Newstart Allowance is below the identified budget standard by $96 a week for a single person, $58 a week for a couple with one child and $126 a week for a couple with two children.
A budget standard measures the basic costs to achieve a minimally adequate standard of living – a level below which no-one should be allowed to fall, the report authors say.

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BOUNDARIES DIVIDE AND TRAVEL UNITES

With all of the horrific incidents occurring seemingly weekly, not only does it leave us with a profound sense of sadness for the victims and their families, but also has us questioning how safe it is to travel – and to travel fearlessly at that. Cei Creighton Investigates

I’m going out on a limb here, and state quite openly that I believe as a whole that the world is a safe and wonderful place for travelers. I also say this having been the victim of a terrifying and violent hostage situation that lasted a number of days in the Solomon Islands. So I do feel qualified – qualified to understand your concerns, qualified to look after your travel arrangements, and qualified to keep a balanced perspective while guiding and advising you and never dismissing your fears.
Big news does not equal big risk!
The chances of being involved in a terrorist attack are slim. Very slim. According to the US State Department data, 24 Americans were killed overseas as a result of terrorism in 2014, a number that’s vanishingly small compared to the number of deaths in the U.S. from traffic accidents, heart disease, and other more mundane causes. Let’s look at the risk of terrorism in a cold, logical, statistical way. Your odds of being killed by a terrorist overseas or in the air are 1 in 20 million (Washington Post and Time). Your odds of being struck by lightning are 1 in 10 million (New York Times). Keep perspective.
If not now, when?
With only one life to live, we can’t afford to let these events dictate our plans. There are many who have waited years to take a special trip. There are dangers in our own backyard that are much more likely to impact us personally than any random act of terrorism. If your fears are insurmountable, go ahead and delay your trip a year. Europe will still be waiting to welcome you with open arms… there is no ‘Used by date’.
Refuse to be terrorised
Fear is the outcome terrorists want because it makes their atrocities even more successful, we want to support our friends in Paris, London and worldwide with our visits to show that the terrorists will not deter us. It's futile to "do something" to be safe from terrorism. It's so random and localized, it's impossible to anticipate. Keep on top of the news, but keep things in perspective.
Don't be shy about asking questions. In any city, the folks behind the hotel desk are a great source of information and they want you to have a safe trip. And assure those who will worry about you that you'll call home every few days. It's cheap and easy to call back to Australia from the US or Europe these days.

"With only one life to live, we can’t afford to let these events dictate our plans"

Ultimately, assessing the risk of any endeavour and the decision to travel fearlessly is a personal choice, but travel is still a huge unifier - perhaps a more vital force for peace than ever. If you hate terrorism, the most effective way to fight it is to travel a lot, learn about the world, come home, and help our country fit better into this ever-smaller planet.
Always ALWAYS have comprehensive travel insurance, register with Smartraveller, heed all warnings posted on Smartraveller, get qualified advice and travel fearlessly!

Read all about it here

A tale of good politics

Boundary Road Interchange opens six months early, under budget and future proof

Living in one of the nation's fastest growing regions, none of us are no strangers to infrastructure news, in fact we're all so used it to now that even large scale projects are often met with barely a raised eye-brow.
But this one is different. This is a project that will significantly improve life in the region for locals and make things more attractive for visitors. It's a project that has been wanted for years and needed even before Costco, Bunnings and other developments arrived. With yet more development on the cards, and people flowing into the region, it couldn't have come soon enough.
It's different for another reason also. Anyone who had driven the old bridge recently, or sat congested in traffic waiting to cross, knows it was desperately needed so it was refreshing to see the levels of government, belonging to different parties, come together.

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New Ferry to Moreton

Starting next month, locals and visitors will be able to take a 40-minute journey across Moreton Bay to Bulwer aboard the Redcliffe2Moreton Express.

With the old barge service ceasing in 2008, they are now the only operator to offer this service in the Moreton Bay Region. Ferry services will depart from the Redcliffe jetty on Sundays at 10.00am and return at around 4.00pm (leaving Bulwer, Moreton Island at 3.00pm).
The first public trip will be on Sunday, 24 September, with tickets available for purchase online through visitmoretonbayregion.com.au.

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NBN access and concerns

As the National Broadband Network rollout hits the halfway point locals are warned about scams and false advertising claims

With the National Broadband Network (NBN) access now reaching 70 percent of local addresses, due diligence is required by consumers.
Federal Member for Petrie, Luke Howarth recently told us (Messenger, July 29 2017, available online) that 59,289 local homes and businesses are now service ready, with 28,339 already connected.
A great milestone in the largest infrastructure project our nation has ever seen, but the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and Scamwatch have both raised concerns about truth in retailer advertising and a warning about scammers respectively.

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To Prep or not to prep

Weighing the pros and cons of delayed start to primary school

Parents of pre-school children and infants often feel significantly stressed as they ponder the pros and cons of delayed entry to primary school in a vacuum of objective information.
Psychologist and education academic QUT's Dr Amanda Mergler, Senior Lecturer the Faculty of Education's School of Early Childhood and Inclusive Education, and co-author Professor Susan Walker, also of QUT, have published the results of a study into the factors that affect parents’ decisions about whether to voluntarily delay their child’s entry into formal schooling.
The study, “This is possibly THE hardest decision a parent has to make. Deciding when your child is ready to start Prep” (view online at www.earlychildhoodaustralia.org.au) found the issue was a “highly emotional” one that caused significant stress.

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North Lakes Australia’s Best Master Planned Community

Mother's Day is just days away. You love your mum so you really should have made plans to treat her by now... if you haven't, start freaking out! Just kidding, we've prepared a prime selection of top treats to make you look good.

North Lakes has been named Australia’s Best Master Planned Community 2017 at the prestigious Property Council of Australia awards.
Since its launch in 1999, North Lakes has been setting new benchmarks in innovative community design and features a diversity, scale and depth of facilities and services not previously seen in Queensland.
David Laner, Regional Manager for Stockland, said Stockland was thrilled to win the industry award recognising the success of North Lakes.
“We are very proud of what has been created at North Lakes and it is a great honour to have the community recognised by the Property Council of Australia in this way,’’ Mr Laner said.
The win for North Lakes follows on from its previous industry success, being named best Masterplanned Development in both the 2010 and 2016 UDIA Queensland Awards for Excellence.
North Lakes sits on a 1,036 hectare site beside the Bruce Highway, formerly used as farmland. Stockland has remained true to the original vision, which was for a new residential and economic powerhouse based in Brisbane’s northern corridor.

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