Skytrans Blog

Toowoomba Wellcamp Open Day – 24 November 2013

January 9th, 2014

November saw an incredible 18,000 people attend the first open day of the new Toowoomba airport.  Called Brisbane West Wellcamp, the new airport is approximately 16 kilometres to the west of Toowoomba’s CBD.

Visitors to the open day were treated to entertainment from the likes of Tania Kernaghan and witness to a spectacular blast of 500,000 tonnes of rock – the largest non-mining detonation in Australia’s history.

Skytrans was proud to be associated with the open day

Skytrans was proud to be associated with the open day

The blasted stone will be used to for further construction of the Wellcamp site.

Skytrans flew a Dash-8 300 aircraft into the half-finished runway and while not being the first aircraft to land, it was the heaviest aircraft to that point.  Five double return tickets were on offer as part of a competition run on the day and visitors were able to get on board and see a plane up close and it was one of the more popular exhibits on the day.

 

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Cunnamulla Library One Direction Competition

January 8th, 2014

At CMA Airport waiting to leaveThe Cunnamulla Library created a competition to encourage more junior and young adult members to attend the library to read, join the reading club and many of the after school/holiday activities we have. This helps keep the kids entertained, get them reading more, which will improve their literacy and therefore improving their job opportunities for the future. The main goal is to get more and more kids coming into the library to borrow books, join the reading club and after school activities, and we’re happy to say it’s working!

Two winners were flown to Brisbane to the State Library, museum, and to a One Direction concert as well! To be in the draw, there was six criteria they had to meet. Which were;Boarding Skytrans Flight

1. Be members of the library.

2. Be participating members of the library – i.e come to the library at least 2 afternoons a week.

3. Return library books on time.

4. Attend school regularly  – 85% of the time.

5. Be good at school – no suspensions, blue cards etc.

6. Write an essay on why they should be chosen to go on the trip.

Dress ups at State LibraryThe lucky winners were Natasha Widgell and Chloe Hatchman.

The trip was a very rewarding one where the girls had a chance to see more of the world outside of their home, Cunnamulla. As a result, Natasha decided to apply for a scholarship through Clayfield College Brisbane to realize her dream of becoming a Marine Biologist or a doctor. She was extremely fortunate in attaining this scholarship! Congratulations Natasha.

While in Brisbane, the girls visited the State Library and learnt more about our history, did a radio interview with Jamie Dunn at 98.9 FM as well as seeing One Direction live in concert!  Radio interview with Jamie Dunn

None of this would of been possible without the generous donation of two return flights to Brisbane from Skytrans, thank you!

 

 

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Girls, Girls, Girls

January 8th, 2014

QQD NOSE Skytrans gets it’s first all female crew… Captain Kelly James, First Officer Bridgette Howe, Flight Attendant  Ellee Storer and Engineer Joanna Kolokythas.

Photographs courtesy of Ray Wade. Thanks Ray!!!!

 

 

 

 

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Lockhart River Artists Continue to Shine

December 10th, 2013

Lockhart River Artists are continuing to shine in the contemporary art world across Australia and internationally. Three Artists Naomi Hobson, Irene Namok and Lawrence Omeenyo are garnering attention for their three very distinct representations of country and life in Lockhart River.

Irene Namok in the Lockhart Art Centre Studio

Irene Namok in the Lockhart Art Centre Studio

Irene Namok explores Kutini Country, the lowland rainforest that surrounds Lockhart River. Being situated between rain forest and spectacular beach, the environment around Irene has greatly influenced her artistic practice – bursts of vibrant colour that appear to leap off the painting undoubtedly reflect the beautiful tropical landscape.

In May this year Irene held a Sold out Exhibition “Looking Above, Looking Inside, Kutini Country” at Alcaston Gallery in Melbourne.  Alcaston Gallery has dubbed Namok to be “one of the most exciting artists to emerge from Far-North Queensland”.

Falls where Pikini Play after School by Irene Namok

Falls where Pikini Play after School by Irene Namok

Irene will be exhibiting in Singapore in January 2014.

Naomi Hobson has adistinctive and contemporary view of her traditional land and culture, Naomi Hobson is a rising artistic talent, and her work has recently been acquired by the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra.

Naomi held her first solo exhibition this year “I am Yikan” also at Alcaston Gallery

Archer River Road House by Naomi Hobson

Archer River Road House by Naomi Hobson

and has since been selected for the Togart Contemporary Art Award and the Gold Coast Art Prize.

The Togart showcases an eclectic collection of artists and artwork for public scrutiny in Darwin. It is one of the most prestigious art awards in Australia and brings together artworks from all cultural backgrounds to provide a snapshot of what is happening in the rich artistic environs of the region. It has an original signature which brings together both Indigenous and Non-Indigenous artists.

Lawrence Omeenyo, respected Lockhart River Elder and Artist was recently shortlisted in the 2013 WA Indigenous Art Award. Omeenyo’s work gained special mention from the judges “the judges were likewise impressed with the unique blend of material invention and conceptual sophistication that define Omeenyo’s glazed work.”

Silas Hobson and Lawrence Omeenyo at the WA Indigenous Art Award

Silas Hobson and Lawrence Omeenyo at the WA Indigenous Art Award

Lockhart River Art Centre acknowledges and thanks Skytrans for providing reduced airfares to Lockhart River Artists travelling to their exhibition openings.

 

 

 

 

 

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Pormpuraaw Artists Go Walkabout in Canberra

December 10th, 2013

The Pormpuraaw Artists and Cultural Centre took six artists, Elliot Koonutta, Sid Bruce Short Joe, Patricia Coleman, Rhiannon Edward, Christine Holroyd and Marlene Holroyd to Canberra in October 2013.  Paul Jakubowski the art centre manager and trainer Theo Tremblay played tour guide.  People were afraid of the cold but quickly saw the benefits to all that free air conditioning. We spent six full days visiting important cultural sites such as tent city, parliament house and the war memorial. School children from all over the country were visiting our nations capital at the same time. I was glad our mob was having the same opportunity.

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Sid Bruce Short Joe tells about his uncle who made these law poles in the National museum

I believe it is important for artists to get out and travel and experience new things. An artist needs to see and collect ideas and techniques. We went to every art museum, art school and art studio available to us. To visit an artist’s studio can be especially important. It shows how artists work; how they think and put “it” all together to complete a finished work. We went to the mint, commercial galleries and the National museum. Here we were able to see artifacts from our area made by descendants.  Tina Baum the head curator of the National Art Museum Indigenous Section brought us into the back achieves and pulled out large canvases for us to view.  It was a great privilege. We thank her, Theo Tremblay and many others who went out of their way to share their resources and time with us.  

I think visiting the Canberra School of Art was a real eye opener for many of our artists. The school is filled with individual workspaces and studios. One artist might be working with shaped plywood. Another might be making bronzes. A different artist was working with tissue paper dipped in wax. All the painters had different styles and mediums. It demonstrated that anything goes with art. Artists need to experiment to find what works for them to make it uniquely their own.

One of the most important cultural sites we visited was “Tent City” which has been manned since 1972. This is where aboriginal brought attention to land right issues. They planted their flag bringing national attention to their plight.  Our people understand the cultural significance of this place for all Australians. It was important to go there.

Going walkabout has always been an important part of aboriginal life style and culture. In the old days walkabout was for gathering food and knowing country. Our trip to Canberra was not to collect tucker but to collect ideas and experiences. It was a way of experiencing art and its application; to “connect” and share experiences. ???????????????????????????????

Arts Queensland sponsored our trip and Skytrans gave discounted airfare assistance; thank you for your support.

 

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1 Camera 1000 Smiles Aurukun

December 5th, 2013
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Photo by Ethel Giblet

Thank you Skytrans for the generous support you provided for the photography program we ran in Aurukun in the September/October school holidays. This program was an enormous success and couldn’t have happened without the return flights provided by Skytrans for the photography teacher, Ricardo Piscioneri.

Geraldine Wolmby, Ric Piscioneri and Ruth Bowenda. Photo by Rowan Marpoondin

Geraldine Wolmby, Ric Piscioneri and Ruth Bowenda. Photo by Rowan Marpoondin

Aurukun children, teenagers, community members and organisations all benefited from this program with 40 young people participating in the photography sessions over the 2 weeks with hundreds and hundreds of photos taken!

Photographer, Ricardo Piscioneri also passed on his thanks to Skytrans for their generosity and support.

Thank you for enabling the children of Aurukun to have this experience of learning photography.

Children's Shadows. Taken by Chelsea Peemuggina

Children’s Shadows. Taken by Chelsea Peemuggina

Words of thanks written by Tess Keam from 1 Camera 1000 Smiles Aurukun

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Augathella State School P & C Trivia Night

December 4th, 2013

November 2013 saw Augathella State School P & C hold their trivia night again. The night was well attended, however due to the continued drought, numbers were down. Still, all who turned up enjoyed the excuse for a bit of frivolity and also competed well not only in the trivia side, but in the auction, and were more than happy to donate their hard earned cash for the multi draw raffle. All in all, a very satisfying result. One which the P & C are extremely happy with, and are hopefull it will make their supporters feel proud that giving a bit makes a huge difference to kids in Augathella.

All funds raised are spent in the most careful way to ensure the greatest benefit possible to the school and children. It is to be a big year for the kids at the school this year, as a trip to Canberra and seeing the snow is going ahead, which will be a first for many of the children who attend.

Skytrans assisted with the donation of flights to raise much needed funds towards the school, like trips to the snow. Augathella State School P & C appreciate the generosity and look forward to continuing the relationship this year as do Skytrans.

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Traditional Dance finds new expression in the Contemporary

December 3rd, 2013

There is a strong and proud tradition of song and dance in the remote community of Lockhart River on Cape York Peninsula. Lockhart River dance embodies traditional stories, history and cultural truths that are vital to the passing on of culture. Seven of Lockhart’s young people and three Elders showcased and transformed this tradition in Melbourne in September as part of the Wilin Spring Intensive program.

A very exciting partnership between the Lockhart River Art Centre, IDJA Dance Theatre, and the Wilin Centre for Indigenous Cultural Development, Faculty of VCA and MCM, at the University of Melbourne is seeing one of the oldest continuing cultures reinterpreted in unique contemporary forms.

Lockhart’s young dancers engaged in a week-long program of learning contemporary dance, acting, puppetry, mime, voice and sharing traditional dance with local community members. Lead choreographer and 2013 Wilin Artist in Residence Jacob Boehme led the dancers through a process of reinterpreting individual and collective memories into mime and then applied the new contemporary dance techniques the students had learnt to the creation of new work. The result was the development of an exciting and unique dance theatre piece set to be showcased in Lockhart River and beyond in 2015.

Lockhart Elders have embraced these new forms of contemporary expression. Uncle Lawrence Omeenyo, Elder, song man and dancer said, “We have so many dances… we’ve been doing them for a long time, the star dance, dance about hunting and collecting sugar bag, catching bullock and branding them, and the one about Yanthimini – a greedy olfella. Now we are doing modern dance too”. It is through his invitation to this year’s four Indigenous choreographers to Lockhart River in 2014 that this program will continue and be shared with the wider Lockhart River community.

17-year old dancer Franziska Omeenyo said of the week-long Melbourne program, “I get fit and I get the joy of dancing, it’s how I grew up, I just love to dance.” Dance may also be helping to build resilience in Lockhart’s young people. “That’s how we’re comfortable doing whatever else is thrown at us, through dance,” said Omeenyo who has now auditioned and been accepted into the Aboriginal Centre for Performing Art (ACPA) in Brisbane where she will study in 2014.

The trip to Melbourne was also an opportunity to share Lockhart’s proud traditional dance culture with several audiences including at the opening of the Festival of Ideas.

Skytrans continues to provide discounted airfares to the Lockhart River Art Centre, helping to make programs such as this one possible.

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Creative Dev 1_Jorge de araujo_80 small

 

 

 

 

 

 

Images copyright and courtesy Jorge de Araujo Photography.

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Living with Lead Alliance Backyard Improvement Program

December 3rd, 2013

By making some fun and  simple improvements to their  back- yard, Skye Ross and her  family scored a family trip to Cairns courtesy of Skytrans.

The second year for the Living with Lead Alliance Backyard Improvement Program competition attracted more than 20 applicants.

The aim of the competition was  to encourage residents to minimise lead exposure by covering bare  soil areas that  are accessible to young children.

Winner Skye Ross and her partner Royce Taylor said they first heard about the competition from friends after they purchased their house in Healy.

The family had planned to make some yard  improvements and entered the competition.

Ms Ross said the yard was originally a mess of trees, paving, and bare soil areas which they removed and covered with  new synthetic turf, and filled the area with children’s play equipment.

‘‘We fenced it off so it  would be safe and once we installed the turf it is easier, we don’t have to move the play equipment to mow around it and it is green all year,’’  she said. ‘‘And there are no lead problems anymore.’’

Chair of the Living with Lead Alliance and State Member for Mount Isa, Rob Katter, said  it  was important for families with young children to minimise the amount of  bare dirt around their  houses.

‘‘Scientific studies have  found that  exposure to dirt  in Mount Isa can increase the  risk  in  the very young  of absorbing more lead into their    bodies, so it’s good to get those bare areas grassed, mulched or converted into garden,’’ Mr Katter said.

Article and image courtesy of Jasmine Barber from the North West Star.

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Dirranbandi Hospital Melbourne Cup Luncheon

December 3rd, 2013
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A young jockey in the making, Clarry Vaughan

The Dirranbandi Hospital Melbourne Cup Luncheon was held again this year with great success. Organised by the Dirranbandi Hospital Auxillary, this luncheon is the only fund raiser for the year and helps raise vital funds to purchase  items that assist with patient care and comfort.

In 2011 comfortable outdoor furniture was purchased for patients and visitors and an arch way for the memorial rose garden. In 2012 enough was raised to purchase a syringe driver to assist the staff as well as a new television for the waiting area for the patients.

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Attending the luncheon, Ada Rilstone

The day turned out to be one of our most successful events yet and enough money was raised to purchase a blanket warmer and television sets and brackets for three wards. Due to the change to digital  and getting the vast boxes the televisions were so old that they were only getting one channel which isn’t much help when you are in hospital.

Thank you very much for the support of the air tickets for the prizes for fashions on the field. The two winners this year were Kristen Murphy and Karina Wilson.

Race goers, Caitlin, Amanda McLean, Kaye Seville and Karena Wilson.

Race goers, Caitlin, Amanda McLean, Kaye Seville and Karena Wilson.

So again a big thank you to Skytrans for their continued support of the Dirranbandi Hospital Melbourne Cup Luncheon.

 

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