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Ten-year-old’s Christmas card warns of Lake Macquarie shark

SHARK, THE HERALD ANGELS SING: A scene from Jada Voight’s Christmas card.
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THIS Christmas card byJada Voight, 10, of Cardiff South Public School, carriesagrimwarningabouta famous,toothy Lake Macquarie resident (no,not John Paul Young).

“Look out Santa! It’s Lake Macquarie!” warns Jada’s card, which won Charlton MP Pat Conroy’s annual Christmas card competition.

Aside from the tell-tale fins,Topics invites you to appreciate the floral detail inPulbah Island, andthe concern of the watching wildlifefor afrantic Santa. A career at Hallmarkbeckons,or one in newspapers.Jada’s winning design was chosen from more than400in the competition, which was open to Stage Twostudents from schools in the Charlton electorate.

Highly commended worksby Gabby Tzaros, of Wallsend South Public School, and Myles Smith, of Charlton Christian College, areonthe back of the official card.

“Each year I produce these cards and send them to lots of local people and community groups, as well as other members of Parliament and the Governor General,” Mr Conroy said.

“In fact, last week in Canberra I delivered cards to my colleagues and the Lake Macquarie shark was the talk of the Parliament.”

Topics wonders how manycardsMr Conroy, a serial ejectee from question time for heckling,gets in return.

Family far from losers Ali Pestell in The Biggest Loser finale.

NO, they didn’t win last night’s TheBiggest Loser: Familiesfinale andyes, they made us laughalong the way, but whatever your measure, there’s less of thePestell familythan there was.

The Bolton Point family who became famous formeltdowns shed a combined total of 151 kilograms onthe Ten show.

All are visibly healthier. Dad Terry, who blewout to 116kg“doing shiftwork, eating lots of takeaway”, is now 85kg.Sisters Mel and Jodielost nearly 42kg each, while firebrand Ali lost the greatest percentage ofthe family, more than 37kg.

In a sign that not every contestant balloonsafter leavingTBL, Ali hasbeen seenat the weeklyNewy Parkrun in Carrington. Which isrun at 8am on Saturdays. Fair effort, that.

Avalon down, not outIT’S been a groggy few days for Phil Avalon, the filmmaker from Merewether who gave Mel Gibson his big break.

Avalon, 60, now on the Gold Coast, was coward punchedatJupiters Resort and Casino last Friday.TheSummer City directorgot up and gave chase but his attacker escaped out the back of the casino with his keys and wallet. He’s recovering and police are investigating.

“These coward punches –frightening stuff,” Avalon told friends.

How Sidey drank all day Sidey was a publican of secret sobriety.

GREGORY Teudt, of Wallsend, read ofGeorge Sidebottom’s costly drinking session (Topics, December 8) and reckonsthe Sydney Junction Hotel publican,“Sidey”, must’ve been George’s son.

Sidey,a fixture at theJunction when Gregoryused to gothere in the ‘60s, was also named George Sidebottom. He’dbeen there so long that peoplereferred to the pub as“Sidey’s”, and he was famous for sharing a drink with the punters.

“He used todrink whiskey all day, and he never slowed down. Whenever someone wanted a drink with him, the staff knew to go and get Sidey’s bottle,” says Gregory.

“The secret was, it was reallyflat ginger ale in that bottle. That’s how Sideynever got drunk.”Sidey’s sounds likethe place to be, with a horseshoesaloon bar and a beer garden that filled until “you couldn’t move in there”.

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