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Dorrigo Local News Items

courier sun logoDestination Dorrigo local news highlights are listed here.  For all the Local Shire News go to the Bellingen Courier Sun local news page.



How a town adorned with bras started conversations about breast cancer

Pink ribbons during Breast Cancer Awareness Month have become the norm, but one small farming community on the NSW Mid-North Coast has decided on a different tactic to get people talking — bras.

Bras of every size and colour have transformed the normally quiet and quaint community of Dorrigo into a sea of colour, following a light-bulb moment from local cafe owner Lyn King.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the death of Ms King's best friend from breast cancer.

"She was playing on my mind and I thought I'd do something nice," Ms King said.


A bright pink sign at the entrance to the town tells drivers to "Slow Down, Bras in Town", and almost every shop in the village has come on board with the idea.

Bras hang as bunting across shopfronts, trees are adorned with them, and even the local road signs have bras of every colour and size hanging from them.

Ms King said the spectacle had drawn tourists from the surrounding areas, as well as bra donations from women wanting to join the cause.

"We've got about 400–500 hanging and probably another 200 to hang up," she said.

"We're getting them sent from all over the place — Armidale, Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour."

Display a conversation starter
While the bras have become a fun talking point, Ms King said the fun led to some serious conversations, particularly with younger generations.

------ from ABC News -  ABC Coffs Coast By Fiona Poole and Melissa Martin
Posted earlier today at 7:05am



Dorrigo Celebrates Buddy Williams 100th Birthday

AUSTRALIAN country music fans could make some toe-tapping history when they celebrate the 100th birthday of the legendary Buddy Williams in the town of Dorrigo.

buddy williams dorrigo 02

The mid-north coast town will be hoping to become the 'Home of Buddy Williams' when it hosts a two-day spectacular celebrating the life and music of the famed singer-songwriter in September.

The Sydney-born Williams grew up in Dorrigo after being fostered out to a farming couple and got his first taste of county music when visiting neighbours in the region.

Learning how to play guitar, he was then later dared to sing on the streets of Coffs Harbour and, as they say, a star was born.

Williams would become the first Australia-born solo country recording artist in 1939 before going on to inspire generations with an endless catalogue of beloved songs.

Australian country music fans will celebrate legendary singer-songwriter Buddy Williams' 100th birthday in Dorrigo in September.
Australian country music fans will celebrate legendary singer-songwriter Buddy Williams' 100th birthday in Dorrigo in September.
Don Dorrigo and Guy Fawkes Historical Society
Now, the call has gone out to all country music fans to rally around the town and vote with their feet when the birthday celebrations begin on September 8 at the Dorrigo Showground.

The extravaganza, hosted by Don Dorrigo and Guy Fawkes Historical Society, will feature music, food, exhibitions and performances to delight the entire family.

A memorial plaque will be unveiled at the society's museum on Sunday and there will be an exhibition of Buddy Williams' memorabilia and a limited-number guided tour of the Dorrigo Railway Museum.

The two-day festival is an alcohol-free concert.

Contact Georgie Frogley on (02) 66572120 between 9am and 5pm for more information.

The 100th birthday of Buddy Williams

WHERE: The Dorrigo Showground
WHEN: September 8-9
COST: Adult $20. Concession card holders $15. School children $10. Family ticket will be considered.

Destination Dorrigo an ATDW Success Story

atdw logoDestination Dorrigo was recently published as an Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) Success Story.

The team at Destination Dorrigo Inc. were invited to submit a Case Study, to the ATDW, to identify the success of their on-line promotion of the events and attraction posted over the past year.

The case study was welcomed by the ATDW and has been published on the ATDW corporate website at:

Destination Dorrigo is calling on all Business & Community groups to make full use of this FREE service by the ATDW.

Black-hearted vegans attacking via Facebook

onward dorrigo"The "militant vegans" whose "hearts are just black" should be held to account when they attack primary producers on social media, one cattle stud operator says.

Over Christmas, three bull calves and one bullock were killed by lightning at the Onward Murray Grey Stud near Dorrigo on the NSW mid-north coast.

Onward owner Sue Francis said she found the dead animals while checking an electric fence for possible faults."

NSW Country Hour by Michael Cavanagh

Please read the entire story at the following link.




Dorrigo Images Promotion

destination dorrigo promote your townDestination Dorrigo is calling on the Dorrigo Community to submit a photo that shows the way you want people to see your town and/or your business.

Maybe dress it up in your favorite graphics program, and then send it to us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Or go to our Contact Us form and upload your image direct to our database.

We will be using these images as part of our next Destination Marketing Promotion through the website, as well as social media platforms, and will be closely monitoring feedback to analyse what Dorrigo followers appreciate about our area and businesses. With this knowledge we have ‘power’ to target increased visitation and investment in our area.


Consensus is killing your town

save our town 01Some thought-provoking words, to start 2018, from our friend Becky McCray.

"Everyone has their own view of your town. And that's fine.

You think your town should be promoted as an adventure base. Someone else wants to be old-timey hometown.

You want your town to have a microbrewery. Someone else doesn't condone drinking beer.

You want a greenspace downtown. Someone else wants a farmers market to fill that space.

These are all fine. Idea Friendly means you don't decide for anyone else. You work towards your ideas, and you let everyone else explore their ideas.

There is no vote. There is no consensus. There is no decision.

There are tests. There are failures to learn from. There are ideas no one gets excited enough to work on so they don't happen.

Instead of deciding for everyone which ideas are worth working on, you let everyone decide for themselves which ideas excite them enough to work on.

You could help, in fact. You help other people learn the Idea Friendly framework. You Build Connections between people and resources. You encourage everyone to Take Small Steps, try and test out their ideas in small but meaningful ways.

You're used to taking great ideas that excite you and watering them down until they're acceptable to enough people but not really very exciting any more. Then you try to make them happen.

With the Idea Friendly way, you're taking your first exciting idea and acting on it, letting people who are also excited join in. You're not worrying about those who don't agree. Let them go do their thing their way.

You might as well build the town you are excited to live in, because if you water down your ideas until you reach consensus, you'll be building the town that no one is particularly excited to live in.

Keep shaping the future of your town,

Ridgetop features in Owner Builder Magazine

c pool in sun

"The quality of the rockwork tells me I am in for a treat, and quantity of it tells me I am going to be in awe."

Ridgetop Hideaway has just been featured in the December/January edition of The Owner Builder Magazine.

"Inland from Coffs Harbour on the NSW mid north coast is the Dorrigo Plateau, a green and gorgeous region of farmed rolling hills punctuated by rainforest dells and surprise gorges and waterfalls. Its 731m elevation, rich soil and high rainfall have made it famous for its potatoes and dairying, as well as for its fabulous scenery, where the land meets the clouds, often merging. In fact, with around 2000mm per year, Dorrigo is the wettest town in NSW!"

Read the full article HERE.

Top 7 waterfalls in NSW

red cedar falls dorrigo waterfalls

Dorrigo we've done it again!!  Australian Geographic has voted three (out of seven) of the top waterfalls in NSW are in the Dorrigo area and part of the famous Waterfall Way Tourist Drive.

  • Red Cedar Falls, Dorrigo National Park
  • Ebor Falls, Guy Fawkes River National Park
  • Wollomombi Falls, Oxley Wild Rivers National Park.

Our natural environment is a real draw card for the Dorrign area!!

This breathtaking journey is the perfect way to experience the diversity of the changing landscape of the Great Dividing Range from the pristine coastal beaches climbing through lush tropical rainforest to the wide open plains of New England.

For more info on waterfalls and scenic drives go to our Self Drive Tours.

It's time to ban "Shop Local"

shop local destination dorrigoAt last someone who is tackling the 'shop local' problem in a better way.

I am an advocate for shopping locally, and keeping money circulating locally as long as possible.

Simply campaigning to convince local customers to shop locally, just because the businesses are 'local', is doomed to fail.

My logic behind this statement is very simple; If locals are convinced to shop locally, businesses seem to slip into a state of apathy. They are getting local business so they don't have the impetus to improve their service and/or product quality, to innovate or change within a changing world. This will ultimately result in customers moving away from the 'shop local' mantra, taking their money out of town.

Instead of 'pushing' customers through the front door, with 'shop local', we need to 'pull' customers in with a fresh and dynamic approach from business owners.

Once we have a group of businesses collaborating in this way, and offering potential customers 'value', then it is time to resurrect the 'shop local' campaign. This will work as there will be something to offer them other than the 'warm fuzzy feeling' of supporting local business.

Our friend, Becky McCray, has done it again with a great new approach to the 'Shop Local' idea.  Go to the following link to read more....

Urunga Visitor Information Centre to close - permanently

urunga information centre destination dorrigoReally hope that this is not the case...

"Unfortunately with the new highway by passing the centre, it has become obsolete. The enquiries have dwindled to virtually nothing and only for train and bus tickets; some days it could be zero.

Urunga needs a vibrant Information Centre. The Council have over 100,000 hours of volunteers experience in Urunga, at their disposal.

The (Council) administration however believes Urunga doesn’t need an Information Centre any more. They are so keen to let the present space, that they’re going to ask the new business to keep a few pamphlets.

Is this the typical attitude of the administration?

We have at the moment the ideal site in Urunga for an Information/Visitor Centre – the old bank building on the corner of Bonville and Bowra Streets....."

Read the full article from the Courier Sun HERE

13 incredible places that actually exist in Australia

And much as Aussies would like to keep these hideaways our own little secret, showcasing the country’s diverse attractions to the world is central to Tourism Australia’s strategy, according to managing director John O’Sullivan.

“There are just so many incredible places waiting to be discovering across the length and breadth of the country and it’s always great to read the many positive comments as we share some of these hidden gems with our followers,” he says.

Here are 13 of the most amazing snaps from around Australia that wowed the folk at Tourism Australia - and us!

1. Crystal Shower Falls, Dorrigo National Park, NSW

dorrigo waterfalls crystal showers

Read about this spectacular site as well as the other 12 amazing places. HERE

First Bundle Launched on the ATDW

Content Flow Infographic White


We have had a large number of responses to our last e-news about the Bundling projects.

To answer a number of questions we have put together the following:

The project works like this:

  • Individual listings are loaded to
  • Within this site we have built functions that can 'categorise', or Bundle, similar listings. In this case the category 'Boutique Shopping'.
  • This bundle has a specific link within the website, ie
  • We then add a listing onto the Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) 'Boutique Shopping in Dorrigo' with a link back to the bundle on
  • Once the ATDW listing is approved the warehouse software distributes this to state, national, and international websites and databases.

The net result is that Dorrigo can present and distribute Bundled attractions to the world!!!

Our bundles will be listed on the following websites and databases:

  • | Destination NSW’s primary consumer website attracts over 22 million visits a year.
  • | This international website, has market and language specific versions for the following countries: Hong Kong, China, Korea, Japan, United Kingdom, North America, New Zealand, Singapore, France, India, Malaysia, Middle East, Italy and Germany.
  • | Tourism Australia’s website delivers information to customers worldwide, and is the primary call to action in Tourism Australia’s international tourism marketing and promotional activities.
  • The Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) | A centralised database of more than 35,000 Australian tourism product and destinations, supplying NSW product to 70 plus websites including

Destination Dorrigo Inc. has developed this initiative as part of its Destination Marketing & Management functions.

We trust that this has made the Bundling idea clearer for you. We realise that it is a complex process but by simply having individual businesses supply us with some text and images we can leverage the ATDW greatly for the benefit of our town.

If you would like to add content to you can upload your text & images from the Contacts link.

'Like' us on Facebook if you think that this is a good idea.



Reminding artists and artisans of The Dorrigo


Creative Mountain Arts Exhibition   “Ahead in the clouds”  

April 13 to 23       Opening night 7pm Wednesday April 12

Including Youth Art & the popular Shoebox Sculpture competition

Great prizes! Don’t miss out! Create and enter.

Information:   Sandra 66574120

Dorrigo - Featured Town

highway travellerDestination Dorrigo Inc.'s partnership project has seen Dorrigo as the Featured Town on the '' website.

Our website has seen a significant increase in referral traffic from the Highway Traveller website.

Many thanks to Kevan Stannard for this 'much needed' exposure for our small village.!

Peter Kenyon Visits Dorrigo

peter kenyon dorrigo 

Dorrigo had a very important visitor to town on Saturday 3 December, although on a fleeting  stop on his way to other places.

Peter Kenyon, one of the world’s leading authorities on Asset Based Community Development and driving force behind the highly influential Bank of IDEAS (  was wandering the early morning market, seeking an early morning caffeine fix, when he was recognised.  Peter, has been involved in community development for almost 30 years. He  has given key note lectures and been involved in many and varied programmes and initiatives to revitalise and empower in 1600 small, medium and large communities in 58 countries throughout the world.

In his short time in town he recounted his previous visit to Dorrigo some 20 odd years ago.  At that time he was asked to audit and workshop where Dorrigo was heading and how to fix problems associated with the decline of the abattoir, restrictions in the timber industry, how to get visitors who were enthralled with the newly established Dorrigo National Park to come into town as well as other manifestations that were pushing Dorrigo in 'the wrong direction'.  High on the agenda of the community back then was the opening of the Railway Museum, the saviour to Dorrigo, and the establishment of industry  - "any industry".

Peter was disappointed to see that the Railway remained unopened, but, forever positive, he believed that Dorrigo still has a future. "Tourism is the key to Dorrigo" with the magnificent natural resources present in the World Heritage Dorrigo National Park and the multitude of other incredibly beautiful national parks and nature reserves of the area. Dorrigo is extremely fortunate that it has so many features that other communities can only dream about.

Dorrigo, however, needs more than tourism to survive. Dorrigo requires co-operation and collaboration within its business community. Apathy is what will finish Dorrigo. Referral marketing, where one business  speaks highly of another business and directs their customers to visit them, is crucial for survival.  Dorrigo requires a strategic plan that is actionable. Dorrigo needs a 'voice' that expounds the virtues of the resources that it has, so that it can grow in a sustainable and positive way. Dorrigo has many specialty and exciting businesses that can attract and hold the attention of visitors, to create a 'story' and an experience that will last. Any innovative and unique businesses should be encouraged, in any way, as Peter, a world expert in the field, believes that they are the key to the long term growth and survival of the town.

Directing business to Dorrigo

robyn simon stephen saunders

‘The Future of Business in Dorrigo’ was the topic for consideration at the last gathering of the Dorrigo Chamber. Perhaps better named ‘the ways and means of directing business to Dorrigo’, this was an interesting discussion facilitated by Robyn Simon (from ETC) and Dr Stephen Saunders, Section Leader for Industry and Destination Development at Coffs Harbour City Council.

Robyn highlighted the importance of businesses having a plan to succeed; only 40% of businesses do! She also emphasized the importance of an online presence and mobile compatible websites as well as the integration of as many different types of marketing tools as possible, such as social media, website presence and optimisation and presence with Google. Statistics such as 62% of Australians have a facebook account, 93% of Gen Y (16-34yr olds) access the internet daily, and that Saturday is the busiest trading day, but generally Gen X & Y favour visiting businesses on a Sunday, provide great clues as to where Dorrigo businesses should be directing their business planning efforts. Dorrigo’s major asset was seen as being a collection of independently owned shops, providing unique and interesting experiences.

Stephen emphasised the importance of taking notice of hard data and what can be learnt from this data to promote the Dorrigo plateau. Tourism Research Australia figures indicated a 21% increase in visitation for the Coffs Harbour LGA over the previous year with 3.2M visitor nights last year, the majority of which are domestic overnight visitors. The highly successful #createyourparadise advertising campaign has seen a marked increase in hits to the website with over 600 hits/day most of which come through mobile devices. The biggest driver to visitation is via Facebook, especially in association with video content. Traditional advertising means provides little when compared to the power of mobile devices targeting Gen X & Y and the millennials. Certain posts and information create more interest than others and the physical beauty of our environment, not unexpectedly, attracts a lot of interest. Coffs Harbour City Council is willing to promote interesting posts, putting $s into boosting posts which drive further visitation to the entire area. Stephen’s department constantly monitors social media. A further promotion of the hidden treasures of the Waterfall Way as an ‘infomercial’ (not a documentary) was discussed at this gathering. There will be an emphasis on experiences and operator offers and it is to be produced shortly.

Destination Dorrigo Inc. looks forward to collaborating with these efforts, as part of our ongoing Destination Marketing focus.

Dorrigo in top 50 small towns in Australia

To encourage local and foreign tourists in Australia to go beyond the usual landmarks and vacation spots, Discount My Flights Australia, a travel agency in Stapylton, drew a list of the top 50 small towns in the country. It lists charming destinations to encourage travelers to go beyond the beaten paths.

One town the agency suggest to visit when in New South Wales is Dorrigo which has a lot of spectacular waterfalls and National Parks which are World Heritage sites such as the Gondwana Rainforests. Gondwana has several outdoor activities such as white water rafting, canyoning/abseiling, bush walking and self-drive scenic tours.

It has entries both from the heavily populated states of New South Wales and Victoria, and the farther ones such as Tasmania and Western Australia which feature coastal sceneries that are out of this world, rugged wilderness and small town hospitality. In suggesting these small towns, Discount My Flights Australia points out that tourists who limit themselves to the capital cities and its attractions, such as the Opera House in Sydney and beaches of Melbourne, “are missing out on what truly makes the country tick.”

ref: International Business Times - AU EDITION | Thursday, September 22, 2016 As of 12:57 PM AEST

VW Spectacular

destination dorrigo vw spectacular 0124TH JULY-1ST AUG, 2016 VALLA VW SPECTACULAR
The Volkswagen Spectacular started in 1984 and has run over 32 years with 21 shows.  The initial event was held every year but this changed to a biennial event due to the large amount of work necessary to organise the event.

In 2014, the 20th anniversary, this event was held over 7 days and in excess of 750 cars attended. The 2016 event was held from 24th July to 1st August. Many activities were organised in and around the Coffs Coast including a visit to the lemon myrtle farm, Valley of the Mist bushfoods, the Bowraville Winery, the Big Banana, Honey place and a cruise  up the hill to the beautiful Dorrigo Plateau.

Fund raising events are an important part of the spectacular with the Nambucca RSL Club sponsoring one of the Charity Days  and funds raised  were donated to a local Cancer Association, whilst other events generously supported by Nambucca Real Estate and the Roberts family raised funds for Lions and Rotary local service clubs. The support of local businesses in Coffs Harbour, Nambucca and Macksville as well as the local council and schools and various voluntary organisations has meant that the Spectacular was another unparrelled success.

Destination Dorrigo Brochure Launched

destination dorrigo brochure banner 02Destination Dorrigo Inc. is excited to announce the release of our first, of four, Destination Marketing brochures.

The organisation has been working on a Destination Management Strategy since inception in September 2015. The internal destination development has seen the website,, populated with comprehensive listings including businesses, community groups, activities, events, images, attractions and history. This has been supported by an increasing foray into social media through and other media.

This internal audit of what Dorrigo has to offer, is now the basis for the next stage of the town’s destination marketing, external destination development, getting the word out to the wider community.

Together with our 'Web Marketing' efforts, Destination Dorrigo Inc. has released the first of four communication brochures. This first brochure gives potential visitors a broad introduction to what Dorrigo has to offer along with QR coded icons and directs visitors (and locals) to the most up-to-date information available about Dorrigo on a fully interactive, all inclusive, community based website. The result is brochure designed never to go out of date! What appears to be a very brave statement is supported by the ability to constantly update and maintain the most comprehensive database of information for Dorrigo ever assembled.

With current research indicating that over 80% of Australians own a smart phone, which are being accessed up to 440million times per day by the 18 to 75 year old population, it is certainly the go-to device for communication and information. ‘Smart technology’ continues to infiltrate the population at a rate of 6% p.a. and it is estimated that by 2020 the ‘technology takeover’ will be complete!!

Hence, the days of the traditional costly brochures and booklets are numbered, as they simply cannot compete with comprehensive all inclusive, current information.

Destination Dorrigo Inc. has also put in place a plan to fund the ongoing printing of these brochures, as well as ongoing web development, at no significant cost to the general business and community organisations of Dorrigo.

Destination Dorrigo Inc. sincerely thanks The Foundation for Regional & Rural Renewal for the funding to print the initial brochures and the following sponsors: Ray White Rural – Dorrigo, Red Dirt Distillery, Misty Threads, and Web Design Domain – web services, for creating and maintaining an innovative destination marketing strategy for the benefit of Dorrigo.

Collected Obsessions - Reviewed

dorrigo dramaCollected Obsessions...

The presentation by the Dorrigo Dramatic Club this month had its audiences being provoked into laughter associated with some deep thinking. Fourteen actors gave performances which were demonstrably enjoyed by the audiences who saw them, and the plays were enjoyed both for the dramatic skills displayed coupled with some nicely crafted scenarios.

This creditable production offered a chance to deftly and with a sure touch present a sometimes comedic yet ideological approach to some age–old human difficulties, and let the audience enjoy the dialogue and situation development, along with much added humour and incisive observation.
Anyone who did not manage to get to the performances missed a treat of well engineered stage craft from every facet of that concept.

Well done all concerned!

About Destination Dorrigo

Destination Dorrigo is a free directory website showcasing all there is to offer on the Dorrigo Plateau.  This site contains information on Accommodation, Local Businesses, Tourism, and our local Community Organisations as well as information on experiences and events which makes Dorrigo your destination. The website is an initiative of Destination Dorrigo Inc. and forms part an all-inclusive Destination Marketing Strategy. Click HERE to view our progress timeline.