In today's episode we learn about disability parking, the Chinese Gardens, the Valorant Open, Gallery Shop and the third song from Art as an Act of Optimism project funded by the Regional Arts Development Fund, featuring local artist Michaela George.
Local news highlights include the Bundaberg-Gin Gin rail trail, Queensland Walks Week, Ocean Crusaders and increased local snake activity.
Dana Maggacis 0:07
Hello and welcome to the weekly Bundaberg Now podcast. I'm Dana Maggacis from Bundaberg Regional Council. Today we have another interesting programme with news and information from across the Bundaberg region. Soon we'll hear about disability parking in the region, the Chinese Gardens, the Bundaberg Library Valorant Open and more. But first, here's Michael Gorey with the news headlines.
Michael Gorey 0:36
Thank you, Dana. Making news this week Transport Minister Mark Bailey has announced $9.5 million in funding towards the Bundaberg – Gin Gin Rail Trail project. Bundaberg Region Mayor Jack Dempsey has welcomed the support. He says the Rail Trail will contribute to improved health, tourism, business growth and community connections. Bundaberg Region residents are encouraged to step out during Queensland Walks Week. Physical and mental health benefits can be achieved by walking every day and anyone can be involved. Here's Mayor Jack Dempsey.
Jack Dempsey 1:12
This week as a Council in the community, we're actually encouraging everybody to get involved in Walk Week and please go to the website – register. Join with family and friends and other members of the community to get out and enjoy the beautiful environment that we have right across the Bundaberg Regoin.
Michael Gorey 1:31
Ocean Crusaders were busy last week clearing rubbish from the Burnett River and creeks in Bundaberg. The charitable organisation collected over 1800 kilos of litter on their first day along Kirby's Wall, including 43 tyres and two fridges. Volunteers are welcome to join the cleanups. Now we hear from one of them, Maura Harvey
Maura Harvey 1:53
Oh God no, this is not my job. Normally I'm a GP, but I'm a volunteer with Ocean Crusaders, and it's just the best holiday you can ever imagine. You get a workout in beautiful country you get to be with fun people who are passionate about what they do. We make a difference in the environment, and we get to enjoy the beauty of nature.
Michael Gorey 2:13
Finally, beware of snakes as they become more active in warmer weather. Local snake catchers are fielding more calls in recent days. They say that people should leave snakes alone and call for assistance if one gets into a house or building. Residents are encouraged to keep their yards free of rubbish. If anyone feels threatened by a snake call a licenced snake catcher. Back to you, Dana.
Dana Maggacis 2:37
Thanks, Michael. Today I'm joined by Councillor Tracey McPhee, representative of Division Four and Community Services portfolio. We're here to chat about something happening within her division and portfolio that she's passionate about, and is of great importance to our community. Thanks so much for joining us, Tracey. Can you tell us a little bit about what's happening?
Tracey McPhee 2:56
Thanks for having me this morning, Dana. Recently, there have been a couple have major changes in and around disability parking and I thought it was a great time to bring residents attention to it. So from the first of August just gone, there have been two major changes. Firstly, residents with a vision impairment are now able to apply for a disability parking permit. And secondly, the maximum penalty for parking in a disability park without a permit has gone up to four penalty units. This means that Queensland Police can now issue a ticket for $533 if you're parking without a permit.
Dana Maggacis 3:32
So from what i've heard Bundaberg has already implemented some great accessibility with disability parking in the CBD. Can you tell us a bit more about this?
Tracey McPhee 3:40
Yes, Bundaberg Regional Council have been doing some great work implementing rear access disability parking. So these particular parks are for people that have their wheelchair come out the back of the park they need an extra long park. There are four these parks in and around the CBD area and all up we have over 60 disability car parks in our CBD so we're actually above the recommended ratio of accessible parks to normal parking. And I must say Bundy residents seem to be quite respectful and law abiding when it comes to parking in disability parks without a permit. Parking infringements for this offence represent less than 3% of our total infringement. So that's great. However, it still does happen and I would just really encourage drivers, even if you're only parking for a couple of minutes to think about our residents who really do need to use some of these parking spaces.
Dana Maggacis 4:29
And since being elected as Councillor you've worked hard to create action to further improve these facilities across our region. Recently, you've had a project from one of your requests completed. Can you tell us a bit more about that one?
Tracey McPhee 4:41
Yeah, before I tell you a little bit about that, Dana, I just want to share that I'd really love to see Bundy add another feather to its cap, being an accessible community and a friendly place to visit for those with disabilities. I recently listened to a short clip from Sue Salthouse, and she's the Senior Citizen of the Year in the ACT for 2020 and part of her vision is that all barriers to participation are removed or reduced as far as possible in every community around Australia. And I know that's a huge vision. But we can all take small steps towards this. And we can take a small step by simply beginning the conversation. And that's what I've done. So after chatting with a resident who frequent specialists at the Friendlies Medical Suite in Crofton Street, it was brought to my attention that there's no on street disability parking. And after chatting with Council staff, they visited the area and came back with some options. I'd like to commend the team on how quickly it happened and their willingness to help solve this issue. This is going to make a big difference to the lives of many people living with a disability.
Dana Maggacis 5:40
Wonderful news, Tracey. Thank you so much for joining me today. Now, I'll hand over to Roana O'Neill from Parks, who is joined by Enya Xu to chat about the Chinese Gardens.
Roana O'Neill 5:51
Good morning, Enya, thank you so much for coming out to the Botanic Gardens today we're standing in front of the beautiful Chinese Gardens and I'm just amazed looking at this beautiful gate as you come through, can you tell us about the symbolism of what's on the gate?
Enya Xu 6:04
Good morning, Roana, I'm very happy to be here. Of course, I really love the big beautiful gate right in front of the Chinese Garden. If you look closely on top of the gate, and you can actually see the Chinese carvings on them. It says it's a pair of represent a dance of a dragon and a phoenix. So if you step backwards a little bit looking at the gate, you can actually imagine yourself seeing a dragon and phoenix facing each other – doing like a dance because dragon and phoenix are so symbolic in Chinese culture, it's like a totem for us.
Roana O'Neill 6:37
As you enter through the gate, I noticed that there's a beautiful Chinese character on the ground. Can you talk us through what that means?
Enya Xu 6:43
Sure, I can. As it goes through the gate, there's a really big red Chinese character on the floor like and it's actually the word says Yong, which is the name of the main river goes through the city of Nanning.
Roana O'Neill 6:57
Oh, wow. That's fantastic. Enya, there's a beautiful rock as you come into the Chinese Gardens on the right hand side just before you go over the bridge, and I know it's a very special rock. Can you tell us about the meaning of that?
Enya Xu 7:08
Sure, exactly. It is very special Roana and it came from Nanning. Originally, it was one big piece of rock and they cut it in half and half they wrote English words on it and the other half wrote Chinese. Its acutally meaning of we came from two continents, different cultures. But basically we are the same. We are united.
Roana O'Neill 7:29
The bridge is a stunning feature of the Chinese Gardens and there are a lot of carved items on there. Can you tell us what they are?
Enya Xu 7:37
There are carved items on both sides of the bridge that are the same and if you look at them, the four types of plants and we can see chrysanthemums, we can see bamboo, we can see orchids and we can see peach blossom. So these four type plants are actually traditionally we say they resemble the traits of a typical gentleman because it means honesty, being straight, being pure not showing off. So I think it's very important for the Chinese culture and in the middle of those bridges, just the words on there. I think it says the bridge of friendship.
Roana O'Neill 8:13
Oh fantastic. Enya when you get to the end of the bridge, you're met with a very impressive rock formation. Can you tell me about that?
Enya Xu 8:20
Yes, there's a really really big rock at the end of the bridge and it was selected by one of the Nanning officials for the Bundaberg. It is one big piece of rock and example with a beautiful lady looking over the whole Chinese Garden.
Roana O'Neill 8:32
Enya there are a lot of plants that make up the Chinese Gardens and one of those special ones is the lotus flower. Can you tell us what the significance of having that plant here in the gardens is?
Enya Xu 8:42
Sure the lotus flower like we all can see them in some and it's so important Chinese culture because we always think lotus flower is represents like a lady's character of being pure. And the reason why we say that is lotus seeds will fall into the bottom of the river goes into the mud. But although it's very dirty in the mud when the lotus flower, when they come out, they're just so pure and beautiful.
Roana O'Neill 9:06
They are stunning.
Enya Xu 9:07
Yes, that's right.
Roana O'Neill 9:10
Enya can you tell us why we have Chinese Gardens?
Enya Xu 9:13
I think the Chinese people will really love gardens because for us it's mainly represents a harmony and a sort of balance between nature and culture. So in the garden, we try to put everything in it and then but also we have a bit of a human touch, but still we want to keep what originally is belong to the nature.
Roana O'Neill 9:36
Enya, at the start of the Chinese Gardens, there are four beautiful bells. Can you tell us more about them?
Enya Xu 9:42
Oh, we love bells. We do love bells. And at the end of every year, this Chinese New Year I think we go and some people would go to the temple and there the bell like people would hit the belt like you know, 100 and 100 times so make the sound, I think probably the resonance of the bell, it's kind of like history and the past and also it goes further away also carries the meaning of future and hope.
Roana O'Neill 10:08
Enya for people who haven't seen the Chinese Gardens, what would you say to encourage them to come and visit?
Enya Xu 10:14
I think it is really beautiful Chinese Garden and I would really encourage everybody to come and visit it. It's not just belong to Bundaberg people, but it's also very important. It's a it's a very deep connection for the Chinese community living in Bundaberg as well. So I would also say to the other Chinese people living anywhere in Australia and come visit our beautiful Chinese Garden in Bundaberg.
Dana Maggacis 10:36
Thanks Ro and Enya. Now so for the gamers is amongst you, here's an exciting announcement from Stephen at the library.
Stephen Harris 10:43
Hi, it's Stephen from the library here and Daniel from Quantum Lounge. We're going to talk about the Bundaberg Library Valorant Open. So it's an event that's going to be hosted by Bundaberg regional libraries and Quantum Lounge. This is going to be occurring on Monday, the 24th of August 5pm to 9pm. So how are you Daniel?
Daniel Hicks 11:10
I'm good, thanks Stephen. Yourself?
Stephen Harris 11:12
Not too bad at all. So what is Valorant?
Daniel Hicks 11:16
Okay, so Valorant is a five man – first person shooter game. It's a little bit different to other five person shooters like CS-GO or Tarkov or anything like that, or even Fortnight where basically your five man team has a single objective, similar to CS-Go where they've got to plant a bomb or defuse a bomb depending on whether you're on the attacking side or defending side and your your players have different abilities. So someone can move quickly. Some of them are really good at putting out diversions. Others can even reveal opposition locations and using these abilities and your shots, basically you try and strategically move into a better position to either defend or attack and plant the spike.
Stephen Harris 12:06
Absolutely sounds brilliant. So when you know at these games are taking place can members of the public watch the games?
Daniel Hicks 12:16
Oh, definitely, definitely. So this is live live streamed on, on the Quantum Lounge Twitch channel. People can easily find that by going to Twitch TV and looking up Quantum Lounge and we'll be the first one there streaming.
Stephen Harris 12:29
Yeah, we'll advertise that as well on on the Bundaberg Facebook page, too. So for people who want to get involved, what what do they need to play?
Daniel Hicks 12:41
Not much, just a computer that can support playing first first person shooter games. So desktops are really good if they've got the right graphics system. Otherwise some gaming laptops will also support this no worries. Basically a computer, internet connection and I guess just a little bit of skill and ability to point and aim.
Stephen Harris 13:04
Exactly. That's all about pointing, aiming and winning. So tell us briefly just a little bit about eSports.
Daniel Hicks 13:14
Okay, so eSports is nothing new really, it's been going on since – what would you say – the early 90s it's been broadcast but even before that eSports is just a competitive form of computer gaming. It's no different to any other sport like soccer or football where a team is working together to achieve the same objective. eSports we just do it on a computer.
Stephen Harris 13:38
Cool that that is so great. So out there in in Bundaberg. If you are interested in getting involved with this Valorant, Valorant Open, you can contact Bundaberg Regional Libraries on 41304140 and we will give you any information that you need. So, I'm gonna say thank you to Daniel from Quantum Lounge and for coming in and having a bit of a chat with us. And it's bye from us at the libraries.
Dana Maggacis 14:16
Sure to be a fun event. Thanks, guys. Now I'll hand over to Tony and Rebecca, who are walking us through the gorgeous new gallery shop opening soon.
Toni Schuch 14:24
Hello, I'm Toni Schuch, and I'm the Marketing Support Officer at the Bundaberg Regional Art Gallery.
Rebecca McDuff 14:30
And Rebecca McDuff, the Gallery Director for Bundaberg Regional Galleries. Toni we've since we've been closed been having a few exciting things happening within our galleries and one of the most exciting has been the transformation of our gallery shop and I'm having this chat today with you on the podcast because you've been instrumental in having the in getting these changes to happen. So when people walk through our doors again, what are they going to actually see.
Toni Schuch 14:53
So the changes that we've made to the gallery shop are more in keeping with the age and the style of the building, we wanted to make it more a luxe or a luxurious shop. So we wanted our suppliers to feel proud to be to have their works in the gallery shop. So that's the look that we've gone for.
Rebecca McDuff 15:18
Actually, there are some things that I really love in there. Some bits of furniture that's been included in this in the new gallery shop look. So can you tell me a bit about some of the furniture that we've got in the shop now?
Toni Schuch 15:29
Absolutely. So that's a bit of a story and a journey. So when we originally did a mood board on what we'd like for the gallery shop, we thought that we would go back to the vintage look, and to source that we enlisted Waste Management. So we went out to the dump shop and we actually sourced quite a lot of the different wares that we've got in the gallery from there. We also sourced from local, a local family. And Susan, she was a window window-dresser at Buss and Turner. So we've actually incorporated some of her furniture in there as well. And yeah, you'll you'll see lots of different interesting old pieces that have been used in different ways.
Rebecca McDuff 16:25
I also have to come in on the gallery sign because I love the new look of the sign. So when you walk in, you'll actually see these amazing rusted letters that have been installed on the wall. So Toni, tell us a little bit more about the inspiration behind that look.
Toni Schuch 16:41
So that was also in keeping the luxe look of the shop. And to do that we came up with the idea of some 3D patina looking letters and to make them glow we got them backlit and I it's probably the first sign of it's type in Bundaberg. We did source some quotes because we thought it would be a big project. But you can imagine that was quite expensive. So we actually found the lettering and then we got our trades people to actually organise doing the electrical side of it. And then the hard part was they had to actually mount it on a curved wall as well. So when you come in, you'll notice the beautiful sign. And yeah, there's quite a story and that was quite a big job for our tradies.
Rebecca McDuff 17:41
And they simply did an amazing job. I think that sign makes the shop and what I love is hanging in front of that there's a big builders ladder – long vintage builders ladder and has all this lighting hanging from it as well. So the whole look just as you said feel so luxe and you really just want to spend time in there and buy things and what also is exciting that we've got a whole new lot of suppliers as well. I saw that there was I think every day there's things coming in and I'm struggling myself not to buy everything as it comes in the door. What particular have you enjoyed seeing come in and new suppliers, Toni?
Toni Schuch 18:14
Yes. So we've, yeah, we've done a quite a bit of a change with our suppliers. So most of them are well, all of them are local artists. And they've all got a bit of a story or a connection to Bundaberg and also what they're making. We're going to promo and do bios about the artists and their works. So look out for those. They'll be on our social media, but we really want people to want to come into the gallery shop to buy something or to find something that's locally made and is of high quality. So yeah, we've got some new things. So we've got some candles that have just come in. We've got a lot of beautiful wares that are made from sustainable products now, which is lovely. We've got some
Rebecca McDuff 19:09
New jewellery lines I saw in there as well.
Toni Schuch 19:12
Lots of lovely jewellery, even knitted beanies, but they're a bit different so. And we're also going to be stocking some leather work, which we haven't done before. Just trying to think what else.
Rebecca McDuff 19:28
There's so much. It's hard to actually think isn't it exactly what we've added. But look, the shop looks so full. And I think like you just said, then I think what's exciting is that people will want to come into this as a retail space standalone to the gallery. And I think that that's our thing. We know they're amazing makers out there and we really wanted to give them a space that celebrated the work that they do. And I honestly I feel extremely lucky to work with a team that has such vision and has managed to pull together this amazing look because it has been you, it has been our tradies and it's also been our tech officer, Rachael, have all worked tirelessly to get this looking amazing. So for anyone who's itching to come in and buy something in our new looking gallery store, we reopened to the public on Saturday 29th of August at 10am. And that will of course be also the opening date to the public for our new exhibitions, Found and A Bridge Through Time. Look forward to seeing you here.
Dana Maggacis 20:20
Thanks, ladies. And to finish off today, we've got another great tune. The Arts and Cultural Services team have been working with local artists through the Regional Arts Development Fund to showcase their original work right here on the Bundaberg Now podcast. A total of 11 artists will be featured throughout the upcoming weeks. And this week, we'll hear from Michaela George,
Arts Bundaberg Advertisement 20:41
The Moncrief Entertainment Centre. Bundaberg Regional Galleries and Bundaberg Regional Libraries and together we're Arts Bundaberg. We love the arts just as much as you do, and whether you're a book lover, an art lover, or theatre lover, the Arts and Cultural Services of the Bundaberg Regional Council are connecting locals all in one place to keep up to date with the things you love. Jump online to artsbundaberg.com.au.
Michaela George 21:12
Hey everyone, its Michaela George from Michaela George Music and local band Electricity. And I'm the featured artists for this week for Bundaberg Now. You're about to hear one of the first songs I ever wrote called Misery. I wrote this when I was around 14 years old and it's about my situation at the time, and how I felt as a young teenager who wasn't able to live with my parents. This is also the first track featured on my EP Diamonds which are recorded at Pacific International Music in Hervey Bay when I was 18. I feel like my voice and songwriting has changed and matured since then, but this also holds a special place in my heart, so. Thanks for listening to and I hope you enjoy
Misery – Michaela George
Robert McLellan 24:55
Arts as an Act of Optimism the Podcast Series brought to you by the Regional Arts Development Fund a partnership between the Queensland Government and Bundaberg Regional Council to support local arts and culture in regional Queensland. Keep listening to the Bundaberg Now podcast to discover more talented artists within our region. To keep up to date with all things arts, jump on line to artsbundaberg.com.au.
Dana Maggacis 25:24
That's all for today. We hope you enjoyed the programme. Join us next week for more news and stories from across the Bundaberg region. Bye for now.