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The 2018 Byron Bay Film Festival

Byron Bay Film Festival runs from October 12-21 at the Byron Community Centre and venues in Brunswick Heads and Murwillumbah. The BBFF2018 program and tickets – including 6, 10 or 20-ticket flexi-passes – can be booked online at BBFF.com.au.

The full program for the Byron Bay Film Festival is now available online, introducing a stellar showcase of over 155 films, including 21 documentaries, 15 dramatic features, 20 music videos and 68 shorts as well as an extensive selection of Virtual Reality experiences.

Chosen from nearly 1000 submitted works, the selection reflects the progressive, relaxed, yet engaged ethos of the idyllic coastal town, where surfing, the environment, music, art, health and social activism are key concerns of everyday life.
 
This year the span reaches from the surf off Sierra Leone to the limpid waters of Hawaii’s Kauai Island, from the smoggy bustle of downtown Manila to the infinitely clear and silent skies that dominate the night in Chile’s Atacama Desert.
 
Absorbing documentaries explore the hidden world of the internet’s “content moderators”, the ever expanding role of Artificial Intelligence in our lives, two very different ground-breaking Japanese artists, young Buddhist monks, and how dogs can help us to lead saner lives. The late Rob Stewart’s courageous inquiry into the horrific shark finning industry has particular relevance for the North Coast.
 
Local and talented young Australian documentary filmmakers are prominent alongside their international peers, with stimulating studies of men’s mental health, obsessive pop fandom, the importance of Aboriginal culture, and the crisis in the Kimberley – and the Latrobe Valley.
 
A standout film is Dying to Live from Frackman director Richard Todd, which looks searchingly at Australians’ seeming reluctance to donate their organs for transplant.
 
There are also Australian-made dramas showing that will launch their directors, writers and actors onto the world stage, although some, such as the creator of Jirga, Benjamin Gilmour, are there already, following the film’s sensational reception at the recent Toronto International Film Festival. The Byron screening is a sneak preview before Jirga has its theatrical release, and will be presented in person by Gilmour – now a Byron Shire resident.
 
Other dramas range from dark and almost surreal comedies from Latvia and Iran, romances blossoming within war zones (and an abattoir), and adventures from the Arctic to the south of France. A supernatural thriller, The School, is another product of a Byron Shire team. 


 
The festival also has what is perhaps Australia’s most comprehensive offering of virtual and augmented reality experiences on offer, plus workshops, panels, parties, and even a breath work meditation with visual accompaniment.
 
It’s a 10-day extravaganza of entertainment, learning and fun –Byron Bay’s most colourful and glamorous cultural event – and everyone is invited. Visit the website www.bbff.com.au and their Facebook Page for further details and tickets.

Brunswick Nature Sculpture Walk

SEPT 28TH - 2ND OCT 2018 

Over 50 nationally recognised artists installing works in the unique landscape of Brunswick Heads N.S.W.

The 'Brunswick Nature Sculpture Walk' invites nationally recognised artists to present works from the popular to the conceptually demanding.

Providing much needed opportunities for regional artists to engage with community and offer workshops and mentoring by interstate and local artists across different regions and states.

Visitors can engage with a range of sculptures and participate in art and environment workshops, guided tours and information from local environment groups such as Byron Bird Buddies, Landcare and Dune Care specialists.

Connecting Artists and Community through sculpture in the environment where all 'play a part & all like to play'. Workshops with artists, students and community, learn more at www.brunswicknaturesculpturewalk.com

SAMPLE FOOD FESTIVAL announce festival line-up for 2018

Sample Food Festival is proud to announce the line-up for the annual event, to be held on Saturday 1st September at Bangalow Showgrounds in the Byron Bay hinterland.

This year’s program, launched by long-time supporter of the festival and celebrity chef, Darren Robertson includes headliners, Shannon Bennett, founder of Vue de monde (Melbourne) and Zeb Gilbert, executive chef at Wasabi (Noosa) alongside appearances from Byron Bay Cooking School’s wellness chef, Samantha Gowing, and author and producer, Luca Ciano.

The one day event will celebrate the diverse and rich produce, chefs, artisans and producers Northern Rivers of NSW is renowned for. Since 2011, Sample has evolved into the largest gastronomic gathering in the Northern NSW calendar, attracting over 16,000 locals, travellers, guest chefs and food lovers alike.

Working with Gold Coast Airport as presenting partner for 2018, Gold Coast Airport Chief Operating Officer Marion Charlton said the airport was pleased to partner with the biggest one-day food festival in the Northern Rivers. “ We are excited to increase our sponsorship support in northern New South Wales, which is a key tourism growth area for the airport,” she said. “Sample Food Festival has become a landmark event on the region’s calendar, and we are proud to be part of its continuing growth story.”

Festival Director, Rose Taylor said “Every year we have visitors going through Gold Coast Airport to attend the festival from around Australia and overseas, and we’re thrilled to have them on board as presenting partner. This year holds an exciting array of makers, chefs and restaurants and I can’t wait to showcase the best of the region for festival-goers - whether they’ve travelled locally, or from far and wide!”.

Look forward to $5 and $10 tasting plates showcasing the menus of 26 regional restaurants, including Harvest, No Bones and Balcony Bar & Oyster Co., over 100 market stalls, designers and producers, live music and children’s activities, while cooking demonstrations from attending chefs will come to a head at the TAFE Celebrity cook off. To help cleanse the palate over the day, award winning Byron Bay brewery Stone & Wood will serve a range of beers, alongside offerings of local wines and Husk Distillers spirits.

As part of the lead up to the festival, Sample and Le Cordon Bleu will also offer a season of events, including one-day food photograph & styling and food & wine writing workshops hosted by Fran Flynn (local photographer and designer) and Justin Bergman (The New York Times, Time magazine, New York magazine and Monocle). Guests may also attend the Fabulous Ladies Wine Society Dinner, hosted by Jane Thomson (Thompson Estate) and Rebekah Richardson (Irvine Wines) with food by Byron at Byron, Bangalow Hotel Dining Room and Luca Ciano.

Friday’s opening lunch will be catered for by none other than Shannon Bennett and his Vue de monde team. Always the hottest ticket in town, this year’s menu, designed by Shannon using local produce, includes canapes, three courses, matched wines and Stone & Wood beers.

Sample Food Festival presented by Gold Coast Airport:

Date: Saturday 1 September, 2018

Time: 8am until 4pm
Location: Bangalow Showgrounds, 1 Market Street, Bangalow 2479
Cost: Tickets upon entry are $5 per person and children are free

Pre-festival events:

Food Photography & Styling Workshop with Fran Flynn presented by Le Cordon Bleu Thursday 30th August 10am – 5pm at The Byron at Byron

Fabulous Ladies Wine Society Dinner with Jane Thompson and Rebekah Richardson, menu by the Byron at Byron’s Executive Chef Matthew Kemp and Gavin Hughes, Chef Consultant, author and producer Luca Ciano and Bangalow Dining Room’s Executive Chef Michelle Wright Thursday 30th August at The Byron at Byron

Eat Your Words Food & Wine Writing Workshop with Justin Bergman presented by Le Cordon Bleu

Friday 31st August 10am – 5pm at The Byron at Byron

Sample Festival Lunch by Shannon Bennett & Vue de Monde Team Friday 31st August 12pm at the Bangalow Showgrounds, under the marquee

Visit www.samplefoodevents.com for more information as well as tickets for the Sample season of events leading up to the festival.
 

Take part in the annual Whale Census

Cape Byron Lighthouse Sunday, 24th June, 7am to 4pm 

The census is organised by ORRCA and relies on volunteers to get outdoors and record how many whales are spotted. This data is used to help understand more about whale populations and their migration along the NSW coast.

There will be ORRCA and National Parks volunteers at the Cape Byron State Conservation Area, the perfect spot to join in the annual Whale Census. Spot whales from the iconic Cape Byron Lighthouse or take in the sights along the Cape Byron walking track.

Learn more at www.wildaboutwhales.com.au
 

The Byron Bay Cookie Company Gift Shop is now serving Coffee!

The Byron Bay Cookie Company Gift Shop is now serving coffee!

Find us at the corner of Ewingsdale Rd and Bayshore Dr in Byron, on the main road into town, and grab a FREE cookie bite of your choice with any coffee purchase!

Proudly serving locally roasted Zentvelds Coffee.

Byron Bay Industrial Estate: 
Unit 1, Ozigo Complex, Corner Ewingsdale Rd & Bayshore Drive, 
Byron Bay NSW 2481 

Tel: 02 6685 6925

(BP station, at the entrance of the Arts & Industry Estate) 

Store is open 7 days a week, from 10am - 6pm.

New matcha elixa from Byron Bay

Made in Byron Bay Australia and founded in 2017, Skinny Green Co is a 100% natural, premium cold blend tea, specifically formulated to boost energy, burn calories and detox the body. Natropathically blended, Skinny Green is free from artificial colours and flavours, delicious in taste and a powerful superfood drink that everyone will enjoy.

Available in two delicious flavours, Kiwi Fruit and Wild Berry, Skinny Green Co was created to achieve greater harmony within the body and a healthier society worldwide. Formulated and tested by nutritionists and naturopaths, this cold tea drink is specifically designed to bring you sustainable weight loss, increased energy and body detoxification. Priced at $34.95, Skinny Green is available Australia wide from leading retailers, cafés and lifestyle stockists, and online at skinnygreenco.com.

Every Skinny Green pack contains 20 x 3g sachets of organic matcha powder blended with Australian Bush Herbs, Grape Seed Extract and L-Carnitine. Australian made, recyclable packaging, sugar free and all-natural ingredients, simply mix with 350ml of cold water, shake and enjoy! For best results drink twice daily with food.

Matcha is made from the nutrient rich, young leaves that are hand-picked from shade grown Camellia Sinensis plants. Matcha is now recognised as the world’s strongest green tea and one of nature’s most powerful super foods. One cup of matcha elixir contains the nutritional content of 10 cups of regularly brewed green tea! And with more antioxidants, Skinny Green offers a natural caffeine alternative without the bitter green tea taste.

“When I drink Skinny Green, I feel energised for the whole day. I absolutely love matcha, but the bitter taste can be hard to enjoy. This is the perfect alternative. It’s natural, taste’s nice and helps me burn calories. I can honestly say I love this product.”

Elle Borenstein, Skinny Green Co customer, Byron Bay, NSW.

Boost energy, burn calories and detox the body. Skinny Green Co is a natural detox alternative, that taste’s great, is good for you, and will help you achieve your health and wellness goals.

STONE & WOOD PREPARES FOR PRE-SALE TICKET RELEASE FOR UPCOMING FESTIVAL OF THE STONE

Join Stone & Wood for a night that celebrates community, live music, good food and the release of their 2018 Stone Beer, all while raising money for Big Scrub Landcare. 

Sign up on the festival website: www.festivalofthestone.com to be notified when pre-sale tickets come online for Festival of the Stone happening Saturday 9th June, 3 – 10pm (Queen’s Birthday long weekend, NSW) at Stone & Wood’s brewery in Byron Bay.

Come along and kick back as the sun sets and the beer flows. Enjoy live music and food truck cuisine with your friends and family at the annual event that celebrates the release of their dark winter seasonal ‘Stone Beer’. 

Stone & Wood will be pouring their beers from their iconic beer truck Clyde and the newest addition to the brewery’s fleet Trevor the Troopie . The first kegs of 2018 Stone Beer will be tapped and available until the tap runs dry. Brewed eight weeks earlier, the beer honours the ancient techniques of brewing. By adding wood fired stones to the kettle to rouse the boil, the malt characters are intensified, which contributes to the beer’s roasted caramel aroma that’s balanced with a warming, full bodied cocoa flavour… perfect for a cold winter’s night!

All profits from the beer sales and tickets will go directly to national not-for-profit Ingrained Foundation, a separate entity of Stone & Wood that was set up to extend upon the brewery’s community program, which to date has donated $630,000 to a long list of not for profit partners. Stone & Wood will donate $1 per h/l sold to the Ingrained Foundation which along with proceeds raised from events such as Festival of the Stone will be used to partner and support local charities to create progress in their communities.

This year the Ingrained Foundation will donate proceeds from Festival of the Stone to Big Scrub Landcare. The brewery works closely with this local charity who focuses on restoration and growth of the Northern Rivers Big Scrub Rainforest.

Shannon Greenfields from Big Scrub Landcare says of hearing the news “It is simply fantastic that we are able to partner with Stone & Wood for their Festival of Stone. We are so proud of the work the team do to help our charity and continue to show in the community”

Family friendly, the festival is about bringing the community together. There will be a kid’s area ‘Malt Disney’ with tunes for the kids to dance along to, as well as crafts and entertainment from Spaghetti Circus.

Tickets are $30 via Eventbrite (going off last year, there won’t be any on the door!) and transport to and from the brewery will be available. To guarantee your alert for ticket pre-sale, makes sure you sign up at www.festivalofthestone.com.

Get Set for the 2018 Byron Bay Triathlon

The 23rd edition of the Byron Bay Triathlon is returning to town on Saturday,12 May. An expected field exceeding 1000 athletes competing in Tempta, Sprint and Olympic distances will be joined by 100 juniors, many of whom are competing in their very first triathlon.

The course, which includes a revised cycle leg and a run under the famous Byron Lighthouse, provides a unique setting for athletes of all abilities to compete.

Organisers are expecting a competitive field comprised of athletes from around the region and nationally. The Men's podium is shaping up to be a battle of the Northern Rivers, with 2017 Mens Open runner up Matt Slee from Suffolk Park back with the gold in his sights, as well as local favourites Harry Jones and Jack Orr. Holly Grice is also back to defend her 2017 title, facing strong competition from Courtney Gilfillan.

"We are pleased to once again organise the Byron Bay Tri," says Race Director Mike Crawley.

"The triathlon in Byron Bay is a celebration of the local area, athletes are able to relax in the morning, have a midday kick off, and celebrate into the night along the beautiful Byron beachside. It is the perfect end to the triathlon season."

"We are also excited to see so much enthusiasm from local businesses, offering promotions and incentives to athletes to welcome them to the community and increase economic benefits throughout town."

Local Byron accommodation houses are already seeing bookings increase, and event organisers are predicting an increase in registration with athletes still feeling the buzz of the Commonwealth Games.

Water safety is once again being managed by the Byron Bay Surf Lifesaving Club, with funds also being raised for the local Byron Bay Scouts and Byron Bay Cycle Club.

The event organisers thank local residents and businesses for working with the event despite any inconvenience caused by road closures from 11.00am to 3.30pm towards Suffolk Park; and until 4.30pm in the CBD.

More information can be found at www.byronbaytri.com.au.

Byron Bay's Most Popular Social Posts of 2017

Social media gives us more ways to highlight the region to all the people who love Byron.

Here are byronbay.com's most popular Facebook posts from each month in 2017 - a great snap shot / re-cap of the year. Please enjoy.

 

January, Circus Arts Byron Bay posted a video of their flying trapeze near the Beach in Byron Bay.

 

February, The Australian newspaper posted a nice little clip of dolphins surfing the local beaches.

 

March, our Byron Insider blog post on the World Naked Bike Ride in Byron Bay was hugely popular.

 

April, visiting photographer Remi Bedora captured this perfect shot of The Pass.

 

May, traveler with the Instagram name my_endless_summer posted this classic sunset over Belongil clip.

 

June, there are always plenty of buskers in Byron. Tom Banks took this short video.

 

July, whale season with Migaloo the white whale story featured in the regional newspaper The Norther Star.

 

August, a clear winters day at the beach captured by local riephiniji.

 

September, time-lapse moon-rise over the lighthouse by local photographer Rod Evens. This was our most popular post of 2017!

 

October, local shop Barefoot Blvd was quick to capture some heavy rain on Lawson Street.

 

November, Buzfeed Mates highlighted the popular Crystal Castle in this fun video clip.

 

December, drone footage of some summer fun in the surf by visiting interior designer derlot.

 

We are very active across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter - be sure to join us.

2018 Starlight Festival

Have a Byron Bay experience, discover your light and reconnect with your true essence at the Starlight Festival.

Join us for a festival of awakening and a celebration of infinite connection. This annual festival captures the essence of Byron Bay with a space for sharing information a bringing together of a community of like minded people. Starlight Festival is a diverse event, with live music, chanting, workshops and Yoga. It is the perfect opportunity to ignite your soul and celebrate conscious living.

The event attracts people of all ages and is a family friendly event. With renowned practitioners and specialists across a variety of fields including massage, yoga, natural products, beauty, sustainable goods, soulful food and healing. The Starlight Festival also offers connection with practitioners of ancient shamanic wisdom, soulful sound journeys and psychic knowledge.

Join us at the Byron Bay Starlight Festival in Bangalow from January 4th to 7th 2018 for four days of spiritual growth, enlightenment and expanding consciousness.

A&I Hall Bangalow
Jan 4th-7th 2018 
www.starlightfestival.com.au

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