Here’s your headlines from around regional Australia and beyond. Scroll down and refresh for weather, road reports and more.
8.31am: That's a wrap for this morning. Remember to check in on your local paper's website for breaking news throughout the day.
8.29am: What do a green and purple dinosaur, a plane doing a nose dive and a bunch of ever-changing fiberglass cows have in common?
For visitors to the South Coast these kooky landmarks signal you are getting closer to your holiday destination.
We’ve collected a few, but if we’ve missed your favourite landmark, feel free to share it with us and we’ll add it to the mix. Email email@example.com
8.25am: Into fishing? You’ll be into this.
Twas the night before Christmas, and all was quite, except for the Australian Bass which were on the bite, especially during twilight.
This week I hit the Shoalhaven River at daybreak to chase some Australian Bass on surface lures. It wasn’t long before I was treated to some top surface action with bass and estuary perch smashing soft cicada lures. I ended up catching a dozen fish, including a couple of estuary perch around the 40cm mark. Find out more.
8.11am: For around 10 years Kevin and Wendy Lyons have not spent a single night of December away from their South Pambula home. Mr and Mrs Lyons are the faces behind one of the regions most well-known and highly frequented home Christmas light displays. But that’s about to change. Find out why.
7.58am: A warm and fuzzy one this morning.
7.52am: Had it not been for the alertness of two young North Wollongong Nippers and a post-patrol gathering of surf lifesavers, you would be reading a very different story right now. Read on.
7.45am: A 64-year-old Bombala man sustained serious injuries when he was attacked by a dog at the Bombala Caravan Park yesterday around 8.30am. Find out more.
7.41am: Two South Coast teens at the centre of a murder plot coordinated from inside a Sydney prison are only alive today thanks to the most unlikely of heroes - their would-be executioner’s hard-nosed cellmate. Full story.
7.13am: Cherry Flower Sheldon started fielding requests about her Christmas bus in August.
The Shoal Bus driver decked out her bus in festive cheer for the first time last year and she definitely hasn’t let her passengers down again this Christmas. See more.
Partly cloudy. Slight (30%) chance of a shower, most likely this evening. Winds W/SW 15 to 20 km/h becoming light in the middle of the day then becoming E 15 to 20 km/h in the early afternoon. Daytime maximum temperatures 25 to 30.
For those hitting the road this morning we’ve got a clear run so far. Good news for train commuters, there are no delays on the South Coast line.
DUBBO | Dubbo clubs grieve after death of Sam Fraser
Teammates and friends of Sam Fraser are struggling to come to terms with his death after he drowned while swimming at Churchies Reserve on Monday afternoon. More here.
NEWCASTLE | Hunter TAFE student bypasses Higher School Certificate to achieve study goal
COURTNEY Hardwick will never forget the disapproving looks and comments she received after she announced she was leaving her selective high school in year 10. Watch here.
LITHGOW | Lithgow's mental health resources at a crisis point
LITHGOW City council has held its first mental health summit. The summit took the form of a panel discussion, with Dr John Dearin facilitating the event. More here.
NSW | Police top brass Nick Kaldas and Catherine Burn criticised in bugging report
Former deputy NSW police Commissioner Nick Kaldas may face criminal charges for allegedly giving "false and misleading testimony" in a secret hearing over a police bugging scandal, while his one-time rival for the top job Catherine Burn engaged in "unreasonable" and "unlawful" conduct. More here.
ACT | Gunman holds up Calwell Club, stabs patron who tried to stop him
A club patron who wrestled a masked gunman to the ground was repeatedly stabbed and remains in hospital with serious injuries. More here.
Warilla woman handed good behaviour bond for using dead dad's money to pay for tattoos
A Warilla grandmother has been convicted of fraud after she withdrew money from her father’s bank account in the days after he died to pay for tattoos and Christmas presents. More here.
RUSSIA | As Russia's ambassador was assassinated, a photographer witnessed it all
WARNING: Some readers may find the photographs appearing in the story distressing.
When a neatly dressed man fired at the Russian ambassador to Turkey, a veteran photographer covering the "routine" event thought it was a "theatrical flourish". More here.
BALI | Police in Ubud detonate backpack containing fireworks with sign saying 'Bomb'
Bali police have detonated a backpack containing fireworks after it was found with a sign attached that said "Bomb" in the popular tourist village of Ubud this morning. More here.
GERMANY | Berlin stunned into silence after truck rams through Christmas market
"It doesn't sound like it was deliberate to me. It couldn't be, could it?"
The words of an American woman pricked my interest as I walked into my hotel foyer, having just arrived in Berlin from Amsterdam on Monday evening. More here.
1913 - Arthur Wynne published a new "word-cross" puzzle in the "New York World" in England. The name was later changed to "crossword."
1937 - Walt Disney debuted the first, full-length, animated feature in Hollywood, CA. The movie was "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs."
1968 - Apollo 8 was launched on a mission to orbit the moon. The craft landed safely in the Pacific Ocean on December 27.
1972 - In Chicago, IL, 10 people were killed when a Delta Air Lines flight was hit by a North Central Airlines flight that was trying to takeoff. Ten people, out of a total of 45, aboard the North Central flight were killed. All 88 people aboard the Delta flight survived.
Marg Callaghan’s house, garden and shed give the impression she has been handcrafting furniture for decades. So it’s difficult to believe it was only this time last year the 81-year-old completed her first piece.
“I just came out one morning and decided I would have a go at something,” she said. Read here.
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