News

It must be Christmas!

RINGING IN CHRISTMAS: Pat Kennedy will be lighting up his West Ballina home from December 1.
RINGING IN CHRISTMAS: Pat Kennedy will be lighting up his West Ballina home from December 1.

IT just wouldn't be Christmas in Ballina without the Kennedys and Motbeys lighting up their homes.

Pat Kennedy has been lighting up his 3 Riverview Ave home at West Ballina for so long that he now isn't sure if it's been for 18 or 19 years.

But he has been lighting up his home long enough now that adults who visited as children are now turning up with their own children in what has become a Christmas tradition for many.

Pat has never been worried about power bills - his award-winning light-up has always been about the kids.

But he has installed LED lighting throughout his display, as well as solar-powered ropes of light.

He has about 75,000 lights in his display, which will be turned on December 1, and switched off at the end of that month.

"It's been magic for me," the 75-year-old said of his display.

Around the corner in Oakland Ave, West Ballina, Rob and Maree Motbey use their light-up to collect money for the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter and the Ballina State Emergency Service unit - a cut-out of the helicopter will adorn the roof of their home when the lights are turned on December 1.

They started decorating their home at Christmas for their grandchildren, but then decided to make it a fundraiser for the two rescue organisations.

Rob is a former tow-truck drive and Maree is a volunteer at the helicopter op shops.

They have raised $18,000 for the helicopter in 11 years and $7000 for the SES unit.

Currently, the SES is fundraising to build a new shed at its Ballina headquarters.

The Motbey family will be lighting up until December 28.

They use LED lighting and solar power, but consider any cost to themselves to be like a donation to both causes.



Plans floated for Ballina trawler harbour

Dredging has been finished at the Ballina trawler harbour.

Ballina mayor wants to make river big asset

He served his country but died a lonely death

BEFORE: A photo of Walter Derrett's grave taken in 1934 and printed in the Northern Star.

One of the saddest stories Tales from the Grave has uncovered

Busy year for busy bees restoring neglected duck pond

From left, Mark Bailey and Derek Goodwin of South Lismore Duck Pond Landcare with the Mayor of Lismore Isaac Smith.

South Lismore Duck Pond wins grant to continue much-needed work

Local Partners

Wonderland star hits the big time in America

HE MAY not be James Bond, but Bundaberg lad Michael Dorman has hit the big time in a lead on Amazon web series Patriot.

Living End, Grinspoon stars hit stage for American Idiot

Chris Cheney of The Living End stars in the Australian production of Green Days musical American Idiot at Brisbane's QPAC Theatre.

TAKE a look behind the scenes of Green Day's American Idiot musical

Northern Rivers gig guide

PIRATE FLAG: The Hussy Hick's latest single is a crowd favourite that echoes a sentiment of political scepticism. Hear Pirate Flag at Tintenbar Upfront, Tintenbar Hall, tomorrow 7.30pm. $20.

What's on this week in local entertainment

Samuel L Jackson dismisses La La Land ahead of Oscars

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in a scene from the movie La La Land.

Hollywood actor and Oscars voter says Denzel should win top gong

Former Family Matters stare accused of child abuse

Reginald VelJohnson, left, and Darius McCrary arrive at the TV Land Awards on Sunday, April 19, 2009 in Universal City, Calif.

Darius McCrary has been accused of child abuse

Bindi Irwin's birthday tribute to her dad

Bindi Irwin

Bindi Irwin has paid tribute to her dad on his 55th birthday

Stunning home blends South Pacific beauty with Orient style

Immaculate residence with two outdoor living areas

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!