Postcards from Toronto paradise

SHOWCASE: A selection of images submitted for the Toronto Postcard Competition. Entries close tomorrow. SHOWCASE: A selection of images submitted for the Toronto Postcard Competition. Entries close tomorrow.

SHOWCASE: A selection of images submitted for the Toronto Postcard Competition. Entries close tomorrow.

GOT a great picture of Toronto and surrounds stashed on a camera card or in a photo album?

Then Toronto Chamber of Commerce wants to see it, and quickly.

The Greater Toronto Postcard Competition seeks to find 12 original images that depict the best of the greater Toronto area – that’s Teralba to Wangi Wangi.

The images will be featured in a series of 12 postcards promoting the area.

But entries close tomorrow (Friday).

Toronto Chamber’s Brenda Hartmire said some beautiful entries had been submitted.

“I’m very pleased with the quality of the entries so far,” Ms Hartmire said. “And the variety is really good.”

There are categories for professional photography, amateurs, art and junior photography or art.

Meanwhile, voting for the people’s choice award was progressing well, Ms Hartmire said.

A selection of entries is on display in the shopfront at 25 The Boulevarde, at Toronto.

The competition is supported by the Lakes Mail.

■ Visit toronto老域名出售.au for entry details, or click on the “vote here” button to get involved in the people’s choice award.

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AD FEATURE: AIM Centre a one-stop shop

HELPING HANDS: From left, Louretta Dwyer, clinical trial manager at The AIM Centre; endocrinologist and diabetes specialist Claire Morbey; and receptionist Susan Jeffery are seeking Lake Macquarie volunteers for research to improve treatments for diabetes and associated complications.ABOUT one in 20 Hunter residents are diagnosed with diabetes.

Alarmingly, more than 60 per cent of the cases of type 2 diabetes could be avoided.

That’s where The AIM Centre, in Merewether, steps in. The AIM Centre is focused on your health.

The specialist team provides a holistic and integrated model of care for people affected by diabetes – including those at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

The AIM diabetes health and management centre is a one-stop shop. It provides clients with access to endocrinologist and diabetes specialist Dr Claire Morbey, as well as an on-site exercise physiologist, psychologist, dietitian and diabetes nurse educator.

The AIM Centre also runs a range of workshops to help adults and children to understand, manage and maximise their health potential.

In addition, they contribute to ongoing research aimed at improving therapies and treatments for diabetes and associated complications, such as cardiovascular and kidney disease, by conducting clinical trials on-site.

The AIM Centre is looking for volunteers.

If you would like to know more, phone 4963 2323 or visit the website aimcentre老域名出售.au.

Speak to your GP about a referral and the benefits of The AIM Centre’s specialised health care.

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AD FEATURE: Daily foot-care regime reduces health risks

CHECK-UP: Central Podiatry receptionist Amanda Searle gets her feet checked by Holly Khan. Picture: Jamieson MurphyUNCONTROLLED diabetes can cause problems throughout the body, but the feet are particularly vulnerable.

Diabetes causes high blood sugar levels, which can damage nerves and blood vessels.

Podiatrist Holly Khan from Central Podiatry, in Morisset, said this damage may reduce sensation and circulation to the feet, both of which can lead to pain, lack of mobility, foot ulcers, infections and eventually amputations.

“When you have diabetes you need to take very good care of your feet every day,” Ms Khan said.

Podiatrists are health professionals who are specially trained to manage lower limb foot biomechanics and treatment including diabetes-related foot diseases.

“People who have low-risk feet need to have their feet checked every 12 months and people with high risk feet should have their feet examined every three to six [months],” Ms Khan said.

“These check-ups will include looking at the blood flow to the feet, feeling and reflexes, unusual foot shapes, toenails, dryness, calluses, corns, cracks and infections.”

Ms Khan said there are a number of ways people can keep their feet healthy, such as washing, drying and moisturising them every day, and wearing clean socks or stockings without rough seams.

“Protect your feet in a shoe which fits well (a thumb width longer than your longest toe), and keep your feet away from direct heat such as heaters, hot water bottles and electric blankets,” Ms Khan said.

■ Phone 4970 5447 or visit centralpodiatry老域名出售.au.

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String of local robberies connected

WANTED: A CCTV image of the man police want to speak to.

POLICE have released CCTV images of a man suspected of involvement in a string of local armed robberies, including at Rathmines.

Police said that between Monday, June 30, and Tuesday, July 8, a man armed with a large knife held up petrol stations and newsagencies in Rathmines, Belmont, Cardiff and Freemans Waterhole.

During the incidents the man threatened staff members with a knife, stealing cash and cigarettes before running from the scene, police said.

No one was injured during the robberies.

Police from Lake Macquarie Local Area Command were called to each business and established crime scenes, which were examined by specialist forensic officers. Detectives are continuing investigations and believe they are linked.

They are looking for a man who has been described as being of Caucasian appearance, aged in his 20s, about 180 centimetres tall with a thin build and blond hair.

■ Crime Stoppers 1800 333 000.

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Dora Creek bridge restrictive for some


SOCIAL DIVIDE: John Shoebridge said the steps leading to the bridge pathway made it impossible for some people to get to the other side of Dora Creek on foot. Picture: Jamieson Murphy

OLD SCHOOL: Locals say the bridge is long overdue for an overhaul. Picture: Jamieson Murphy

THE pedestrian path across Dora Creek Bridge effectively cuts the town in half, a local resident said.

John Shoebridge, 81, said the steps on Baker Street leading to the bridge crossing prevented less able bodied people from accessing local shops and the train station.

“Anybody with a stroller, wheelchair or walker has to somehow try to get up the stairs,” Mr Shoebridge said.

“I can walk up there at the moment, but in a few years I might not be able to.”

For people without a car, the steps are their only option to cross the waterway, he said, because walking across the narrow bridge roadway was not an option.

“It’s not just an inconvenience, it’s a social thing,” he said.

“There are not many other places in New South Wales where you can’t safely walk from one side of town to the other.”

Mr Shoebridge called the situation a disgrace and said a ramp should be installed on the southern end of the bridge.

“The work [Roads and Maritime Service] has been doing is excellent, the lighting is much better – but they’ve missed the point. A ramp would allow equal access for everyone in the community,” he said.

The bridge pathway is also in poor condition. The floorboards shake whenever a truck goes over the bridge, and the fence separates from the bottom of the path in many places.

Dora Creek Progress Association president Mark Mannile believed the pedestrian path on the bridge had not been replaced since it was built.

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Sky-high charges rile Warnervale skydivers

INQUIRY: Wyong Shire Council has increased charges to Australia Skydive Group.Picture: Ryan OslandWYONG Shire Council is under fire for imposing a massive fee hike on a skydiving company at Warnervale Airport.

Australia Skydive Group (ASG) chief executive Adrian Kennedy said the council’s fee had increased from about $1795 last financial year, to potentially $535,000 in 2014-15.

Mr Kennedy said the new fee structure had resulted in an “inconceivable” 297-fold increase for the club.

The new fee included “exorbitant new parking, refuelling and annual fees” and the scrapping of the former fixed rate.

The council said the new fee structure reflected the changing use of the airport, and the greater “impact on runway infrastructure associated with commercial skydiving operations”.

“The user-pay model was selected by council as the most equitable fee structure, with costs borne by the users rather than Wyong Shire ratepayers, with the fee structure benchmarked against other regional airfields prior to adoption,” a spokesperson for the council said.

Mr Kennedy said the “grossly inflated charges” do not exist at any other regional airport in Australia.

He said the plane used by ASG at Warnervale, the Cessna 208 Caravan, predominantly lands on the grass beside the runway, not on the sealed runway.

“There is absolutely no credible evidence to suggest that a skydiving aircraft will cause more wear and tear to an airport than any other type of aircraft,” he said.

“Under council’s fee schedule if our plane is used for a purpose other than skydiving, we would pay $13.64 for a landing. However, if we use the same plane for skydiving operations the charge is $145.44 because that usage now falls within the Adventure Sports category. It throws into question the credibility of council’s claims.”

ASG and the council are involved in a separate matter before the Land and Environment Court.

Please explainAUSTRALIA Skydive Group said NSW Opposition leader John Robertson had written to Wyong mayor Doug Eaton asking him to investigate the reasons for, and process behind, the fee increase.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the federal Minister for Small Business, Bruce Billson, told the Lakes Mail the government had referred the issue of landing fees for skydivers at Warnervale to the Australian Small Business Commissioner to examine.

‘‘While this is not a formal inquiry the commissioner can provide information and assistance to small businesses, including referral to the NSW Small Business Commissioner for dispute resolution services.’’

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Broadband grunt for northern Wyong Shire

FAST NET: Fibre to the node will be installed in the area between the M1 Motorway and Gorokan over the next 12 months. Picture: Glenn HuntWYONG Shire Mayor Doug Eaton has welcomed the announcement faster broadband will be rolled out by NBN Co and Telstra in the population growth area in the north of Wyong Shire.

Over the next 12 months, Telstra will install fibre to the node in the area between the M1 Motorway and Gorokan to deliver faster broadband to homes and businesses throughout Toukley, Gorokan, Kanwal, Hamlyn Terrace, Woongarrah and Warnervale.

“This has always been a problem communications blackspot area and this rollout will make a huge difference for our residents and for future growth,” Cr Eaton said.

“It is fantastic that the federal government has recognised the infrastructure needs of the growing population in this part of the shire in such a positive way.”

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Pioneer Park plan isdemocracy in action

AS ONE of the promoters of the proposed camp ground at Pioneer Park and as someone who has lived within about 1km of the location for over 45 years, I respond to the letter from Sandra Brown published on Monday, July 14.

It is interesting to be able to have a comment from a current user of Pioneer Park to add to the mix of the debate on the matter.

It is just a shame Ms Brown did not have her facts quite straight before sending in her contribution.

There are seven issues which deserve comment:

1. There is not now, nor has there ever been, any proposal to install a dump point at Pioneer Park. The preferred location for a dump facility, should one be created, has been nominated as being in the vicinity of the council works depot in Trewin Street.

2. There has been no agreement that camping would necessarily be free either. What is being proposed is a “no- or low-cost” facility where the cost to camp would truly reflect the facilities which would be provided.

3. Ms Brown goes on to complain that Pioneer Park was not established for the purpose of providing free camping for “transient” recreational vehicles and expresses concern that such a facility would “chip away” at the land space. Pioneer Park is around eight hectares in size, almost the size of a small farm, and to suggest that six or maybe even 10 RVs parking in a quiet corner overnight would diminish the amenity of the current users is laughable.

The rear, or northern most section, of the park has been maintained by council, but never used by the community, for anything, since the facility was first established by the Shire of Ballarat well over 20 years ago. The use of the park to provide a legal overnight parking area for RVs would only enhance tourism by providing a facility which is not currently available in Ballarat.

It will reduce the instances of illegal camping which can be seen across the city most nights and, despite Ms Brown’s contention to the contrary, at “no cost” whatsoever to the community.

4. To suggest that vandals will over-run the facility is to completely overlook the fact that there is currently no vandal activity to be observed on the vast area of unfenced open space surrounding the school which is opposite, so why would it occur within the park any more than it currently does?

5. There would be no conflict with regular dog walkers. In any event, more than 50 per cent of RV tourists travel with pets. Ms Brown seems to suggest that camping is proposed within the established car parking area and that locals will be deprived of a parking space.

Such is simply not so, the location of the actual camping area would be well to the north, to the rear of the park and away from the areas where the car park and established walking tracks are located.

6. The Campervan and Motorhome Club of Australia Ltd, which is the peak body for this type of RV equipment, now has 200 RV-friendly towns spread across Australia each of which features a location where a caravan park runs alongside a camp ground all survive in a harmonious fashion. The Pioneer Park proposal would link in with these existing highly successful facilities and might even eventually lead to Ballarat achieving an “RV-friendly city” designation.

7. Ms Brown should desist from criticising the councillors of the City of Ballarat for they have taken no decision “one way or the other”. All councillors have done, thus far, is to instruct their officers to “review a formal request for the creation of a facility” lodged by a group of local residents who are supported by the club to which they belong and report back to council.

This, Ms Brown, is democracy in action.

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Blues on the board Bombala boys secure first win of the season

Vinnie Papalii, for the Bluetongues, palms off his Batemans Bay Reds opponent during Saturday’s clash.THE Batemans Bay Reds travelled to a cold and windy Bombala on Saturday to take on the Bombala Bluetongues who were in search of their first win for the year.

The Reds won the toss but from the kick off Bombala were keen to get early points.

Some good pressure from the Bluetonguesforwards had the Reds struggling to make ground with ball in hand.

The Bluetongues’ strong defence soon forced a knock on and from the scrum the Bombala forwards were making good metres.

A nice inside ball back into the ruck from halfback Dane Cottrell saw No 8 Ray Kading (Village Ford) score, which Dane was able to convert – score 7-0 to Bombala.

Batemans Bay had the next run of good metres gained.

A short inside ball from the Reds 5/8 saw the big lock crash over, which was converted – 7 all.

From the kick off, Bombala had started well but were looking though they had not come out to play just yet, with a lack of the use of the shoulder in defence the big Bay forwards were making the gain line too easily.

From the lineout the Bay went to their big lock at the back of the line who ran through some poor defence to score under the posts, easy conversion, score to the Reds, 14-7.

A penalty to Bombala at the breakdown with the Red forwards sealing off the ball gave the Bluetongues a lineout just outside the 22.

A great rolling maul saw the Bluetongues drive the Bay Reds a full 23 metres.

The Reds tried to illegally pull the maul down, but it was too late and Andrew Boreham playing at no 6 (Dungaree Past Co) peeled off the maul and crashed over the line – converted score 14 all.

However this collapsed maul saw Steve Bonnett have to leave the field injured, replaced by Kincaid Lunn.

The Bay were next to score through some pace from their young backline – score 21-14 to the Reds.

The first half was a bit of a see-saw with both teams trading trys.

Bombala were next to score.

Bombala’s front rowers Haywood Fraser and Vin Papalii made good in roads into the Bay’s defence, backed up by our loose forwards in Slade Newton, Matt Gould and debutant Glenn Martin.

Chris Anderson at 10 used his inside backs William Beale and the returning Rhys Crouch to bust through the Bay backs and take the game further into the opposing half.

Another strong run from Ray Kading at 8 (Village Ford) saw him crash over to bag a double, unconverted, the score was 21-19 to the Reds.

The restart to Bombala put them right back on attack and they were again making decisive ground through a tired and cold looking Bay Red team.

William Beale was quick to control the game and directed the Bluetongues forwards and backs well.

A huge run from Rhys Crouch, who as usual was hard to stop one on one, meant Bombala were close to scoring again.

A ball out to Vin Papalii playing at No 1 (IGA Bombala) saw him throw a huge dummy and punch straight through the line to score, which converted gave Bombala the lead again – 26-21.

That brought the first half to a close, with a quick change of ends to avoid the chill, Bombala now had the wind at their backs with the downhill run.

The Bluetongues received the kick, however were unable to take the ball and the knock on gave the Bay a scrum 30 metres out.

A hard running front rower from the Reds was proving the difference at this point, and with each ball carry he was peeling off some real territory for his team. Being on the front foot gave the backs room to move and having sucked in some of the Bluetongues backs to the breakdown the Bay had the overlap and were able to score out wide through their young winger – unconverted score was 26 all.

Batemans Bay claimed the restart however their captain was then sin binned for 10 minutes after he led with his forearm to Bombala’s Matt Gould’s throat while carrying the ball.

The penalty kick for touch gave the Bluetongues easy metres to the lineout.

Again a drive saw the forwards pick off a solid 10 metres.

With several pick and gos from the ruck Bombala were driven back from scoring, however a third pick and go from Kincaid Lunn playing in No 2 (Bendoc Park Herefords) saw him squeeze over to score in the canteen corner – unconverted, the score was 31-26 to Bombala.

More sustained pressure in the Bay red zone from Bombala eventually led to more points.

A knocked down ball from the Bay which Ross Page playing fullback was able to pop off the ground to Andrew Boreham who found space down the blindside, threw a dummy and was over for his second – unconverted, Bombala led 36-26.

From the kick off ball kicked long into the corner and forced the Bay back three to kick for touch, giving the Bluetongues a lineout well into the opposition territory. Two quick hit ups in the forwards put Bombala on the front foot.

A wide ball from Dane Cottrell at half back to fly half William Beale who was then able to draw the inside defence and throw a cut ball to fullback Ross Page (HJ Brown Constructions) who ran through a big hole to score, converted took the Bombala lead to 43-26.

A frustrated Bay defence were being continuingly penalised for slowing the ball down and not clearing the ruck correctly.

A penalty 15 metres out saw halfback Dane Cottrell (Landmark Operations) take a quick tap which caught everyone by surprise and he was able to step his way to score under the posts, which he converted bringing the score to 50-26.

With only minutes to play the Bay got their hands on the ball and were throwing the ball around like the Harlem Globe Trotters in a last attempt to score.

A very hectic three minutes of rugby where the Bay kept the ball alive and had the Bluetongues back peddling eventually saw their winger score out wide on the final play, unconverted the final score was 50-31 to the Bombala Bluetongues.

A big thanks to the Batemans Bay Red team for travelling well and giving the Bombala boys a solid game of rugby, of which both teams commented on it has always been a good contest between the two teams over the last few years.

Points for Bombala this week were as follows:

3 points to Haywood Fraser (Linga Longa Cafe).

2 points to Raymond Kading (Village Ford).

1 point was shared between Andrew Boreham (Dungaree Past Co) and Dane Cottrell (Landmark Operations).

Players Player went to William Beale (Meadowbank Borders & Texels).

Commitment Cup went to Andrew Girvan playing in the second row (D & M Automotive).

Thanks again to all our sponsors this year.

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Bendigo to host the State Summer Games

COMPETITION: Cr Rod Fyffe, competitor Zachary Flint and manager Kevin O’Byrne. Picture: BRENDAN McCARTHYBENDIGO will host the 2015 Special Olympics State Summer Games.

The games are for athletes with an intellectual disability and will involve a weekend of competitions in numerous sports onApril 11 and 12.

Between 200 to 300 people are expected to compete.

Sports will include aquatics, athletics, bocce, cricket, equestrian, golf, softball and tennis.

Special Olympics Victoria state manager Kevin O’Byrne said the event offered a terrific opportunity for athletes to represent their local region.

“Certainly the games are very much a social event,” he said.

“It’s good not only for the athletes but also for the families and volunteers.

“(Competitors) aim to reach their personal best but it’s also quite competitive.”

He said the Special Olympics had a partnership with Victoria Police, and the games would kick off with a law enforcement torch run.

City of Greater Bendigo Cr Rod Fyffe said the games played an important role in creating an inclusive community, which showed that it valued people of all abilities.

Competitor Zachary Flint, who will represent Bendigo at the games in swimming and 10-pin bowling, said he was excited by the prospect of playing athis home town.

He said the event provided a great opportunity to make new friends and excel in his chosen sports.

“I meet new people and cheer everyone on,” he said.

“It gets more people motivated to get involved in sport.”

City of Greater Bendigo major events manager Terry Karamaloudis said the event would promote the city and provide a boost to the tourism sector.

“One of the great untold stories is we can only monitor competitors,” he said, adding that competitors often came to events with their families, enhancing the number of tourists flocking to the city.

“The event sector is a great vehicle for generatingnew traffic to Greater Bendigo,” he said.

“We’re delighted to showcase an important event like this.”

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