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BIG SCRUB IS BACK! - LIMITED RELEASE -

New Age Lager reminds us to preserve the beauty of our backyard... 

Set to quench thirsts as the weather heats up, Big Scrub - Stone & Wood's refreshing new age lager is back. Only brewed from time to time, Big Scrub will be going on tap and hitting shelves across the country mid October.

Protect your local rainforest! With only 1% left of the largest sub-tropical rainforest on the East coast, the remnants of Big Scrub serve as a reminder to preserve the natural beauty of our backyard, and are the inspiration for our Beers from our Backyard limited release.

Our Big Scrub is a new age lager. It’s different to traditional lagers by being dry hopped, using new world hops and it’s left unfiltered. It pours golden with a slight haze from extended cold maturation (5 weeks), with a luscious, creamy head. Big Scrub balances floral aromatics, spicy herbal notes and hints of citrus from the dry hopping. It has a dry, firm bitterness that makes for a moreish finish.

We are lucky to live in one of the greatest places on Earth, with an incredible hinterland that needs to be protected and appreciated. Big Scrub is our local rainforest, that once covered 75,000ha prior to European settlement. It was the largest area of subtropical rainforest on the East Coast of Australia, and is an important part of Australia’s rich biodiversity heritage.

For us, we are conscious of treading lightly on earth and are inspired by the incredible regeneration and restoration work of our local community, work that has helped save our local rainforest. Leading the charge is Big Scrub Landcare, a not-for-profit we continue to support, working together to raise awareness and actively preserve our hinterland.

Learn more about Stone & Wood + purchase online, visit www.stoneandwood.com.au.

Enjoy a Spring Break in Byron Bay

Winter is officially over – it’s time to celebrate.

Beat the summer rush and take a spring break in beautiful Byron Bay. Visit the region from September through November and experience warm and sunny weather, relatively quiet beaches, and the tail end of the whale season.

Spring Getaway in Byron Bay: 5 Places to Stay

Not sure where to stay? Here’s some springtime inspiration.

1. Byron by the Beach

Relax and unwind in the sunshine with the sweet sound of crashing waves at this stunning, open-plan holiday house. Situated a short walk from the centre of town, this 5-bedroom, 2-bathroom home features large French doors, air-conditioning, a BBQ, laundry facilities, an outdoor shower, and an idyllic verandah.

Quick facts:

  • 5 bedrooms: 3 queen rooms, one bunk room, one twin room
  • 2 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 8 or 10 if family with children
  • 3-minute walk to town
  • 1-minute walk to Belongil Beach

Learn more about Byron by the Beach.

2. A Byron Experience

Experience the best Byron has to offer this spring – enjoy A Byron Experience. This self-contained holiday apartment is tucked away in the centre of Byron’s bustling town. Private and tasteful, this two-storey home-away-from-home is encompassed by a luscious tropical garden, and features 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.

Quick facts:

  • 2 bedrooms: 1 king room, 1 twin room (can be pushed together to form a king)
  • 2 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 6
  • Located in the centre of town
  • 4-minute walk to iconic Main Beach

Learn more about A Byron Experience.

3. A Seventh Heaven

Soak up the springtime sunshine at A Seventh Heaven, a boutique, two-storey holiday apartment ideally situated in the centre of Byron Bay. This newly-furnished 3-bedroom home features a light, open-plan design, and a north-facing, sun-filled terrace overlooking lush gardens. Experience Byron’s gourmet eateries, or head to the beach – the choice is yours.

Quick facts:

  • 3 bedrooms: 2 queen rooms with ensuites, 1 double room
  • 3 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 6
  • Located in the centre of town
  • 2-minute walk to the beach

Learn more about A Seventh Heaven.

4. Beach Haven 7

Escape to Beach Haven 7 this spring, and experience penthouse living at its finest. Situated on the top floor of a small complex, this 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom holiday apartment is directly across the road from Clarkes Beach. Flooded with light, this comfortable holiday home features high-ceilings, an airy, open-plan living area, and a north-facing balcony.

Quick facts:

  • 3 bedrooms: 1 queen room, 2 twin rooms
  • 2 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 6
  • 7-minute walk to town
  • 1-minute walk to Clarkes Beach

Learn more about Beach Haven 7.

5. Three by the Sea

Celebrate spring Byron style at Three by the Sea. This recently renovated, island-luxe holiday apartment offers two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a fully-equipped kitchen. The generous master bedroom features an ensuite bathroom and large, private deck. Enjoy a home-cooked meal al fresco, or head into town for a unique culinary experience. Take a dip in the complex’s heated pool, or take the short walk to picturesque Belongil Beach.

Quick facts:

  • 2 bedrooms: 1 queen room with ensuite, 1 twin room
  • 2 bathrooms
  • Sleeps 5
  • 15-20 minute beach walk to town
  • 2-minute walk to Belongil Beach

Learn more about Three by the Sea.

11th Annual Byron Bay Film Festival October 6-15

#CINEMAFORTHESENSES

It’s time to answer the siren call of Byron Bay – to its beautiful beaches and bush, and to the rich cultural feast that is the Byron Bay Film Festival (BBFF).
 
Now in its 11th year, BBFF spans across ten days in six venues, featuring over 175 independent films, and attracting filmmakers and film-lovers from all over the world; it is the Australia’s most loved regional film festival.
 
Last year the festival celebrated its milestone 10th birthday, with celebrity endorsements from some of the film world’s top names – including A-listers Idris Elba, Chris Hemsworth, and Tom Hiddleston, who said it was “certainly the best film festival in Australia”. The festival had its stamp on the international calendar, and as it has done every year, increased its international reach.
 
This year the festival launched with a stirring video made by acclaimed Storm Surfers director and now local resident, Justin McMillan, with Director of Water Photography Stefan José joining other Byron locals to help out.
 
The video captures not just the glory of surfing on this part of the coast, but the freedom to be found in the Byron landscape, and embodies the high-quality aesthetic of the festival, and lights up the sensory experience of both the unique Byron Bay experience, as well as the immersive wonder of film. It captivates and offers the viewer ‘Cinema for the Senses’ – the perfect taster of what festival goers might experience in 2017. View the trailer now, via www.bit.ly/2iA5jJ5
 
Once again there is a unique and diverse line-up from around the world. This is truly an international event, with documentaries, drama and comedy from some of the most remote corners of the earth, as well as the best from young Australian filmmakers and their contemporaries overseas. Find out more about the Young Filmmaker Award via www.bbff.com.au
 
Virtual Reality (VR) and other high tech of the moving image will be explored and shared. The Byron Bay Film Festival has been a pioneer and leader in the burgeoning Byron Bay innovation movement, which has created countless entrepreneurial and industrial opportunities for the creative industries and beyond. The Ncubat8 Program offers the opportunity for a young filmmaker to work on VR with a local industry professional. More information on this can be found on the festival website.
 
Move seamlessly from one world into another: dry off, brush the sand from your feet, and step into the infinite universe of the cinema, to be transported to another place and time.
 
Then there’s the parties, the meet-the-stars and film-makers events, the workshops, live music and action!
 
The Byron Bay Film Festival is illuminated with two dazzling red carpet gala events in the heart of town. Opening Night offers a chance for industry networking and a taste of the flavour of the festival to come, and features a highlight film screening. The culminating celebration event is an exciting night of recognition for filmmakers, the festival, Byron Bay, and the international film industry, and not to be missed. Early ticket purchases are recommended to avoid disappointment to these two popular events.
 
The 11th Annual Byron Bay Film Festival is held on Friday 6 – Sunday 15 October 2017 in multiple venues throughout Byron Bay and surrounding suburbs.
 
Program will be released over the coming weeks.

Tickets are on sale now via www.bbff.com.au
 

2017 Destination Byron Tourism Symposium Re-Cap

The theme Beyond The Byron Boom, How to Ensure Our Visitor Economy is Sustainable, allowed the local industry to come together for a one day conference at the Elements of Byron Resort and share some detail on how different sectors are working sustainably.

The event began with an introduction by Cr. Simon Richardson, who did an excellent job as MC with insight and humour, followed by Delta Kay's engaging Welcome to Country.

The program started with Stephen Mahoney and Anthony Laver of Destination NSW, presented Projections and Updates, providing visitor statistics and outlining many of the services they provide to the region's industry and businesses. 

Vanessa van Uden, a past Mayor of Queenstown New Zealand, presented a real-life experience of Queenstown Avoiding Death By Popularity. She highlighted the importance of industries working together to come up with innovative solutions, such as using sewerage charges as a bed tax alternative by charging $612 per year for the first toilet, then $306 for each additional toilet. The larger hotels end up contributing over $100,000 per year.

Liz Price discussed the Strategic Master Plan for the Great Ocean Road, which until recently went without any central management. Liz highlighted the issues they face with a fragmented industry servicing 5 million (mostly day trippers) each year. 

The 140 or so attendees then enjoyed a Local Producers Morning Tea supplied by Nimbin Valley Dairy, Salum Australia, Brookfarm and Byron Bay Cacao.

The first panel discussion was Sustainability of the Events Visitor Economy, facilitated by Cr. Simon Richardson with Jane Magnus, Jen Murphy, Mat Morris and Chris Hanley. A mature industry pointed out that better regulation and better infrastructure would help the events industry. And, the importance of event managers sharing best practice improvements amongst themselves.

Before lunch, Anthony Laver, David Jones and Brenda Miley, facilitated by Cameron Arnold, discussed Defining Brand Byron. The consensus was it's the feeling of Byron that best defined the brand, as there are beautiful beaches, great restaurants, exciting festivals, etc. all over the world - but only one Byron Bay.

A quick lunch with time to stretch before Pam Brook facilitated the Heroes of Regional Tourism discussion with Tom Lane, Brooke Hudson, Sue Walker and Jasmin Daly. They each talked about change, collaboration and the importance of allowing staff to work to their own passion.

The program ended with Delta Kay, Vanessa van Uden, Liz Price and Carly Weiland discussing How Will Byron Tackle Quality vs Quantity facilitated by Jane Laverty. The lively discussion ended up with the idea that a quality service or experience will encourage the desired quality of visitor behaviour.

The attendees finished the day with a drink supplied by Brookie's Gin and Stone & Wood, and some networking.

Overall, the theme of people and collaboration ran through every discussion, with the best, simple idea coming from Delta Kay who suggested we all greet Byron's visitors with 'Jingi Walla' (Welcome).

Splendour in the Grass 2017

Warm blue sky days and cool clear nights made for an easy and enjoyable Festival. 

Splendour in the Grass 2017’s line-up of over 100 acts played to a capacity 32,500 audience across four main stages - The Amphitheatre, Mix Up Stage, GW McLennan Tent and Tiny Dancer - while the festival’s campground became a home away from home to 19,500 music fans.

The music, artwork, light installations, sunny days and excess glitter helped provide colour and movement across the whole festival.

Appreciative audiences for all performances added to the energy.

Fun bars and interesting food all around - my favourite were the Mary's Burgers. All up, another excellent Splendour - I can't wait for next year!

6 Places to Stay in Byron Bay with Fire Places

Byron Bay is a winter wonderland: clear water, bright blue skies, and mild temperatures. If you’re planning to visit during the colder months, get cosy Byron style at one of these 6 places to stay with fire places.  

1. Coco’s Cottage

Escape to your private home in the lush Byron Hinterland at Coco’s Cottage. The restored 1890’s self-contained holiday house feels a world away from the hustle and bustle of town, but is only a short drive from Byron’s world-class beaches, restaurants, and night life, and Bangalow’s unique collection of shops and eateries. At the end of the day, relax, unwind, and keep warm in front of the stunning fire place.

Learn more at www.byron-bay.com/cocos

2. Toolond Plantation

Take in the panoramic ocean and mountain views at the unique Toolond Plantation guesthouse. Situated on 100 acres of private bushland 20 minutes west of Mullumbimby, the self-contained holiday home accommodates up to 8 people and welcomes pets. Escape the chilly temperatures, and cosy up in front of the log fire.

Learn more at www.byron-bay.com/toolond

3. Elements of Byron Resort & Spa

Take you winter getaway in style at Byron’s newest luxury resort, Elements of Byron. Nestled on 50 acres of absolute beachfront, enjoy all the creature comforts in the privacy of your own villa. Some rooms come with an outdoor gas fireplace, otherwise head to the main pavilion for Fire Pit Fridays.

Learn more at www.byron-bay.com/elements-byron

4. Planula Retreat

Planula Retreat is a tranquil oasis located just over 3km from the centre of Byron Bay. This bed and breakfast style retreat offers a fully equipped kitchen, spacious living area, private rooms, and access to stunning tropical gardens. In winter, guests warm up by the fire.

Learn more at www.byron-bay.com/planula

5. Azabu Nature Guesthouse

With a gourmet breakfast served fire-side, a heated spa pool, and spa treatments available, Azabu Nature Guesthouse is one of the best places to rest and relax this winter. This luxurious guesthouse is located a short 5-minute drive from Byron’s beautiful Main Beach.

Learn more at www.byron-bay.com/azabu-nature-guesthouse

6. Victoria's at Ewingsdale

Victoria’s is a multi-award-winning guesthouse set among incredible landscaped gardens just a few minutes’ drive from the centre of Byron Bay. With ocean, mountain and rural views, and a log fire to keep you warm, this elegant getaway is ideal for the colder months.

Learn more at www.byron-bay.com/ewingsdale  

Sean O’Shea’s Byron Bay: A book of extraordinary photos

Sean O’Shea takes photographs and videos every day on the beaches and in the hinterland of Byron Bay. And in just the few years Sean has been posting them, these images have inspired literally millions of people around the world.

Sean is an artist not a businessman, so his friends have come together to help him curate a book featuring top quality prints of his iconic photos, along with personal and compelling stories about how he took them, written by Byron Shire author Kate Veitch.

People message Sean from Tokyo, Timbuktu, Rio, Rome, and hundreds more cities and towns just to say how watching his live streams from the Bay, and his incredible still shots, help them get through the business of their daily lives.

This book is for people anywhere and everywhere who want to see nature at its most beautiful, up close, in the company of the kookaburras, dolphins, palms and casuarinas of the Shire. It will be made to last, to keep telling its stories and passing on its messages well into the future -- and maybe it will even make our collective future just a bit less perilous.

As of the 21st of May 2017 our CROWDFUNDING website — www.pozible.com/project/sean-osheas-byron-bay —  will be ready to take people’s pledges. When we reach our target of $25,000 ($AU) we will print Sean's book — and everyone who has pledged will get the books, calendars and greeting cards they requested as rewards. We know it’s a big goal but it’s a bold book, and if we don’t reach our goal, no one will have to pay a cent.

We chose to finance Sean O’Shea’s Byron Bay online so we could stay free of the demands and high prices of mainstream publishers, and so we can discover just how many people here and abroad want a top-quality full-colour hard copy of Sean’s best work. We think there will be tens of thousands of them, judging by the extraordinary popularity of his social media posts.

Any of Sean’s fans who are able to pledge higher amounts can get extra rewards, even an outing in the Bay area with Sean and his camera!

If the crowdfunding hits our goal, the books, cards and calendars should hit the shops and be in the mail before Christmas.

There’s a great team giving their time and talent now to help Sean and me, his partner, create a truly exceptional book that celebrates our amazing northern rivers environment, and our equally extraordinary community.

To see Sean’s work online check out  www.seanoshea.com.au  www.facebook.com/SeanOSheaArt  www.instagram.com/seanosheaart

Mothers Day in Byron Bay 2017

Celebrate Mothers Day 2017 in Byron Bay. There are a number of special events happening on Sunday, May 14 at venues across the region. Check them out below.

Three Blue Ducks

Spend Mothers Day at Three Blue Ducks at The Farm in Byron Bay. Come for breakfast or lunch, and your mum will be treated to a special gift. If you can’t make it on Sunday, the Produce Store has put together some stunning present ideas. 

Book now and learn more at www.threeblueducks.com/byron/home-byron

The Byron at Byron

Celebrate Mothers Day in Style at the annual Mothers Day lunch at the Byron at Byron. With two delicious courses of your choice, a glass of Prosecco on arrival, and live entertainment by Sali Bracewell, Mothers Day at the Byron at Byron will be one to remember.

Book now and check out the menu at www.thebyronatbyron.com.au/whats_on/mothers-day-byron-at-byron

The Balcony Bar & Oyster Co.

Come with mum to the iconic Balcony Bar & Oyster Co. in the centre of town this Mothers Day. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, all mothers receive a complimentary glass of Piper-Heidsieck and an exclusive take-home gift. 

Book now and learn more at www.balcony.com.au

Francisco's Table

Do something a little different this Mothers Day and head out to scenic Federal Hall for a lunch unlike any other. Hosted by roaming pop-up restaurant Francisco’s Table, guests will enjoy a variety of delightful shared dishes placed among your family, friends, and fellow foodies. 

Book now and learn more at www.facebook.com/events/1879880902257937

Fatbelly Kaf

Take a trip to beautiful Brunswick Heads with mum for a casual brunch or Banquet Lunch this Mothers Day. Held at Fatbelly Kaf, the banquet includes five light courses, with optional matching wine tastings. 

Book now and learn more at www.fatbellykaf.com

2017 Nimbin Roots Festival

From September 15 – 17, over 50 talented artists will perform in Australia’s counter-culture capital for the annual Nimbin Roots Festival. After selling out in 2016, this year’s festival is set to be bigger and better than ever with two new stages and one extra day.

The Nimbin Roots Festival offers authentic, original, and raw roots art and music in various venues throughout the town. The venues – including the outdoor Rainbow Power Stage and the historic Nimbin Bush Theatre – are located short distances from each other, creating a community of walking festivalgoers.

This year’s lineup will see a diverse mix of local, national, and international musicians and artists perform Americana, Bluegrass, Folk, Australiana, Old Blues, and world music. American group The War and Treaty will share their Gospel style tunes, while the brand new Aquarius Stage will showcase Nimbin’s finest.

The festival will kick off on Friday afternoon, with a special opening concert on Friday night featuring performances from local Bunjalung dancers. The festival will close on Sunday evening with the Australian Roots Music Awards.

As well as the musicians, the Nimbin Roots Festival has invited a number of visual artists to display their unique work in the festival gallery. Art installations, interactive artworks, and themed camping also feature throughout the festival venues and campsite.

The Abundance Village will host a number of exciting workshops, including yoga, philosophy, permaculture, live art, weaving, poetry, belly dancing, body art, and kids’ activities. And, a community market area will host up to 30 colourful market stalls where festivalgoers can pick up a piece of Nimbin to take home with them.

The Nimbin Roots Festival is proudly moving toward sustainable forms of energy to power the live performances and art spaces, with a number of venues using solar power.

Festival tickets include opening and closing performances, as well as entrance into all venues and participation in all workshops.

Buy tickets and learn more at www.nrfest.com.

Byron Bay Naked Bike Ride 2017

Join thousands of ‘biketivists’ around the world on a clothing-optional bike ride around Byron Bay on 12 March for the World Naked Bike Ride 2017.

The World Naked Bike Ride is the largest naked protest in the world, with events held in over 74 cities in 17 countries around the globe. The event supports a number of different causes, from environmental issues to body positivity.

Firstly, the protest aims to spread awareness of cyclists and pedestrians on the road. Participating biketivists advocate for bike-friendly roads and footpaths in our towns and cities to ensure the safety riders and walkers.

Secondly, the World Naked Bike Ride protests against the use of unsustainable fossil fuels, citing the damaging effects they have on our environment and the health of our planet’s population.

Finally, not only does the clothing-optional dress code garner attention, it calls for body acceptance, confidence and positivity from both riders and onlookers.

Join the protest this year in Byron Bay on Sunday, March 12. Meet fellow riders at 1.30pm at Railway Station, Byron Bay, before embarking on a liberating cycle around town. The protest will last around 30 minutes.

The bike ride will be short and easy. Riders of any fitness level are welcome to join. Finally, nakedness is not compulsory – go as bare as you dare!

Keep up to date with the event by joining the Facebook Group here: www.facebook.com/groups/8999913451/

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