Voice of Real Australia is a regular newsletter from Australian Community Media, which has journalists in every state and territory. Sign up here to get it by email, or here to forward it to a friend.
From an ecologist's concerns to a woman's campaign to promote sustainability in a niche industry to a 40-year-old cold case and lawnmower racing. Then there's the tragic tale behind what, on the surface, seems a photo simply oozing fun. Settle in and have a read - or at least bookmark some great Sunday reading.
BALLARAT COURIER: Michael Beattie's photo holds a dark secret
Nestled on a wall of a small gallery in Lydiard Street is a photograph of a teenage boy riding through a burst water main in Sebastopol on March 10, 1987. The boy in the black and white image seemingly without a care in the world - which has prominently featured in publications promoting the Ballarat Foto Biennale - is 13-year-old Michael Beattie. But the image of smiling boy lies. READ ON
NEWCASTLE HERALD: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a big problem in more ways than one
More than 80,000 tonnes of plastic is believed to be floating in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. That, if you're wondering, is the equivalent of 500 jumbo jets. A Newcastle-based ecologist has raised major concerns about a project that aims to clean up. READ ON
MANNING RIVER TIMES: Making honey and saving a native species from extinction
You mightn't know it but native bees pollinate a larger percentage of our food crops than European honey bees do. And like many of our native animals, the native bees are facing an increasing number of threats - so much so, populations are declining. Enter Chelsea Hands. Let reporter Julia Driscoll explain ... READ ON
THE EXAMINER: Beyond the backyard, Tasmanian lawnmowers pick up speed
Emerging from the sharp right-hand corner through billowing dust, Shirley Wiggins appeared to have the ride-on lawnmower under control. Though on later reflection, she felt she was being overly cautious. Reporter Matt Dennien immersed himself (literally) in the world of mower racing. READ ON
THE BORDER MAIL: 'The x-ray didn't pick it up': Bernie's breast cancer message
Bernie Hurley listened to her GP - she turned 50, and went to do that screening for breast cancer. In December, the Albury psychologist had her first free mammogram and nothing of concern was raised. But only a month later, she found a lump in her breast. READ ON
MANDURAH MAIL: Cash for clues in 40yo mystery will hep, says grieving brother
From potentially case-cracking information, to the heartbreak of the family left behind, reporter Carla Hildebrandt wraps up Australian Community Media's true-crime podcast Annette: Cold Case Unlocked. The four-part series has examined the suspicions and secrets surrounding the September 1980 disappearance and death of 19-year-old Annette Deverell.LISTEN TO THE LAST EPISODE HERE
Enjoy your Sunday.