Drink

Onward and Upward

The joy expressed by this visitor to the last Pyrenees Unearthed festival in our opening image, exemplifies the sense of relief we were feeling last week about the prospect of life continuing to return to “normal”. After a year we all want to forget, when so many of our much loved festivals and events were cancelled, it was a delight to see many of them returning to the fold in 2021. That was before we were thrown into lockdown once again. This newsletter was ready to post last week, then came the news of another lockdown. It was a shock,…

Who you gonna call!

This story about snake catcher Gianni Hodgeson appeared in our autumn 2020 issue of Secrets, which was caught up in the very early stages of Covid-19, so it didn’t travel very far. We thought it was worth posting here especially as snakes are still very active. Not many people like snakes, in fact most of us are scared witless just from the thought of accidentally running into one, or worse, finding one in the house or nearby.  However, there is one young man who absolutely loves snakes and is making a living by removing those unwanted visitors. Gianni Hodgeson, has…

Hello – We’re Back

We had a bit of a break over the Christmas/New Year period, but now we are back and getting into the swing of a more hopeful 2021. We are super excited about producing our first hard copy of Secrets since March, 2020. There have been a few attempts to publish earlier, but Covid restrictions loomed large making it unviable. However, it’s time to move on and we will be back soon with a new look and a new website – let’s get on with 2021. A Look Back As we move to a new era for Secrets Magazine, we thought…

Did someone say – go!

Twenty eight days of donuts and now I can fly – well at least with caution. Victoria you have done it. Twenty eight days of no new infections leads the experts to say that we have effectively eliminated Covid in the community. The sense of relief is overwhelming. We still have to be cautious, particularly as borders open, but we know what to do now and none of us want another lockdown. It may be small steps for awhile, however they are steps that are going forward. Enjoy Victoria – you deserve it.Image Donna Crebbin Speaking of Images Ballarat photographer…

Doughnuts say it all

Doughnuts have taken on a new meaning with the latest figures on Covid infections. No new cases for thirteen days (from today 12th Nov). This is the best news we have had for a very long time and what a wonderful way to round out the most challenging year we have probably all faced. Victorians deserve a huge pat on the back – we did the right thing and now we reap the rewards. Unlikely that life will be exactly what we knew, things have changed and we are probably facing a reset in how we live, work and play,…

The Drawbridge is down

Those of us who are fortunate to live in regional Victoria have empathised with our metropolitan cousins stuck in the longest and toughest lockdown in the world. We now rejoice with them that most restrictions on their lives has been lifted. To say they’re excited is an understatement. Reports on the first day are of large crowds in shops, cafes serving coffee from the early hours and (not so good) lots and lots of road traffic. The euphoria will settle and a new normal will prevail, which means that from 8th November, we will be welcoming city dwellers to our…

One Small Step

Six years ago – spring 2014 to be precise, our cover featured this great image by photographer Kyle Behrend, courtesy of Edgar’s Mission. This was one of, if not the favourite covers we’ve had in the more than fifteen years of Secrets Magazine. As we are slowly, albeit cautiously emerging from the impositions of Covid lockdown, it really is a ‘one step at a time’ process. If we remain sensible, considerate and vigilant, those steps will become, two, then three and we’ll soon be running once again. Where Art and Nature Go Hand in Hand Set in one of Victoria’s…

For the love of Grapes & Opals

Peter Fyffe, owner and wine grower of Glenwillow Wines is a man of many colours and passions.  He grows grapes, mines opals, lives in an underground house and loves the wines that his grapes produce. The wines come from his vineyard at Yandoit, which Peter along with his brother and a few friends developed by scrubbing out a sheep paddock on the family farm and planting the vines.  The result, after twenty years of hard work is an award winning range of premium red wines recognised as a Bendigo Big Red.  As a Bendigo winegrower, Peter is part of the…

Art and Nature go hand in hand

Located in the foothills of Mt. Alexander with stunning views across the Sutton Grange valley stands Mica Grange a glorious 40 hectare property that is a must visit at any time of the year, but especially in spring. Owners Bede and Mary Gibson love their picturesque property and it shows in the beautiful gardens, which lend themselves seamlessly to the staging of the Mica Grange Spring Open Garden Sculpture Exhibition. The Exhibition opens on 24th October and runs for six weekends to 29th November including the Monday and Tuesday of Melbourne Cup week. Entry is very reasonable at $7 with…

Innovation a legacy of Covid

This pandemic lockdown has been hard, annoying, boring, scary and just a pain in the proverbial, so it is exciting and energising to hear of people being innovative and creatively moving forward. Many businesses and events have gone online and we mention a couple in this post – and that’s great for those that can, but it’s a bit difficult to drink a coffee over the internet. So we’re seeing clever and brave people opening new businesses, buying businesses and reinventing older ones. Our regional councils and tourist offices are also being clever and looking ahead . We can talk…

Bendigo Heritage Uncorked Festival Goes Online

One of Bendigo’s longest running wine and food festivals – Bendigo Heritage Uncorked – hosted by winemakers of Bendigo, has been very innovative by taking the celebrated festival online. For the first time in history Bendigo Heritage Uncorked is going virtual. The wine chat series, from unseen spaces within Bendigo’s historic buildings, will be broadcast live as individual events over six Fridays. Bendigo Heritage Uncorked – The Unseen Series is a reimagined online wine series to be enjoyed in the comfort of home. Each Friday, local host, Kathie Bolitho, chats to three winemakers from the unseen corner of a historic…

One Day We’ll Dance Again

And hopefully it will be sooner rather than later. The reducing numbers in active Covid cases is testament that the majority of Victorians support and are prepared to follow the directions of the Health Authorities for the good of all of us. Let’s keep up the good work and hopefully Christmas might just be a very merry one. Secrets in Summer Like everyone we’re trying to find our way through the uncertainty of today’s world. We’ve been throwing fifteen balls in the air and hoping to catch at least one. Just when we think we can schedule a “hold in…