Lake Bonney bridge finally complete after 98 years of construction

By Callum Regan

Barmera’s Lake Bonney has always been synonymous with the township and the citizens who reside in the houses that lay beneath the paddock sized puddle.
Atop that puddle, has always stood an unfinished bridge, in which the locals decided to label as a “jetty”.

As of today, like an absurdly overdue phone bill, the construction of the bridge has finally paid off; children and their elderly counterparts can now walk to the other side instead of miraculously tumbling off during those hot summer holidays.

Aerial view of the newly completed bridge (below this piece of text, I hope)

Riverland Council spokesperson Mr Lottawood has this to say:

“The reason the construction was delayed a number of times was due to lack of funding, however, installing the lights not too long ago helped attract investors from the RGB community. I can’t thank them enough for what they have done for us.”

The long bridge will also attract a new wave of fisherman looking to catch the highest quality fish that school in the centre of the lake, but I don’t think it’s for their dinner or the bragging rights!
In a conversation with a local fisherman, he confessed that it is for a photo opportunity that would be uploaded to Tinder! What a catch!
Yes, I meant the man.

Due to time constraints, I was unable to cross the entire bridge. If you think walking from the pub to Pitstop is a tough walk, this one will give you a real challenge. However, there are no dims sims on the other side of this voyage.

More to come with time.

The Small Town with Big Plans

Local Correspondent Pattrick Huber breaking ground with Chief Journalist Lance Charles.

One of the countries finest property developers Large River Property, has decided to announce their latest development prospect.

“We saw the success of Jane Eliza estate in the friendly town of Renmark and have chosen a similar approach” mentioned by the company’s spokesperson, Oscar Achilleas.

When questioned about their proposed location Mr Achilleas said “Our research shows that The Riverland’s wealthiest individuals really like to build their dream homes on sinking swampland below the flood line, it would be our honour to help them make their dreams a reality! The Cobdogla Swamplands have been completely under utilised, this area has significant potential to become prime real estate.” 

Current Planning for the Latest Property bundles in Cobdogla

The plans show that there is plenty of opportunity to secure a plot during the first stage. As the location is conveniently opposite Bruno Bay, latter stages will include the construction of a marina and further land development. This will provide Cobdogla with the much needed revamp that is well overdue.

Some of the locals displayed their concerns “I like our aging population, they keep the noise down, not too sure about the young and reckless moving next door…” Although most locals have welcomed the idea with open arms “This could be the revamp that all the empty store fronts needed, very exciting!” 

Subject to Council Approval. The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops. 

Cosi impersonator claims “not a big deal”, after caught dumping trailer-load of old car batteries and tyres in the Murray River

You may have seen him on television or online, ‘South Aussie with Cosi’ has been exploring the region for the last ten years, although now he is in the spotlight for a completely different reason. On Sunday 22nd of June, an Andrew ‘Cosi’ Costello impersonator was caught dumping a trailer-load of old car batteries and used tyres into the Murray River.

Maya Cameron was at the river while it happened, discretely capturing the scene on film.

“I was sitting down at the river by myself when I saw a car with a trailer pull up near the river. They started to back up the trailer towards the water, and the trailer was full of car batteries, tyres, and other scrap metal. I saw a man step out of the car and look around, luckily he didn’t see me. He had sunglasses on but I could tell it was someone that looks like Cosi, his car even had a ‘South Aussie with Cosi’ logo on the side. I quickly started recording on my phone as he emptied the entire trailer into the river,” Miss Cameron stated.

This Cosi impersonator was caught red-handed disposing of his rubbish in the river.

Illegal dumping carries a serious fine, as well as criminal charges. However, this Cosi impersonator claims “it’s not a big deal”, and that “everyone does it”.

“People are seriously overreacting to this, it’s really not a big deal. Growing up we would always take family trips to the river to dispose of old junk, I have a lot of fond memories from those times. It’s not like it’s bad for the river either, a lot of the junk turns into a home for the wildlife, yabbies love hiding in old car tyres. It really just is the modern generation looking for things to be offended by,” the Cosi impersonator stated.

SA Police are yet to release a statement on this incident.

The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops.

Tony Pasin releases EDM track in last-ditch effort to win over young voters

Tony Pasin has surprised his electorate today with the release of a bizarre new music track. Produced by Pasin himself, the short 1-minute track features vocals from Pasin, who is now under the alias of ‘Tony Bassin’. This shocking artistic endeavour comes after devastatingly low polling results for Pasin amongst the younger voters, with this being his attempt to win them over.

‘Tony Bassin’

“I knew something drastic had to be done.”

“The 18 – 24 age group has the lowest vote turnout of any demographic, I had to take advantage of it. Obviously my policies aren’t going to get the votes, so I turned to the one thing that can really speak to the youth; music,” Mr Pasin said.

“Many will remember PM John Howard’s time as a DJ, so this kind of thing runs in the liberal party,” Pasin continued.

With voting day coming up on the 21st of May, Mr Pasin remains hopeful that his foray into dance music will help push him through to victory.

The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops.

Truck Parks Outside Local Service Station Blocking All Traffic… Becomes a Hero

Journalist Pattrick Huber with the Star Truck.

Passing through Barmera, one of The Riverland’s finest towns, commuters will frequent the convenient service stations located on the national A20 Highway. Locals such as Jack Mehoff have questioned the safety on how some modes of transportation park their vehicles along this stretch of road, “You cannot see oncoming traffic whatsoever, someone must do something!”.

A potentially devastating hazard which many Riverland motorists have to endure.

Interstate truck driver now local hero Trent Ch, who periodically visits the headlining service station decided to take matters into his own hands by parking across the entire entry/exit. We were given the fantastic opportunity to have a chat “On my previous visit, I overheard some nearby residents speaking about safety, in regards to truck parking nearby their local servo. I had to do something!” said Mr Ch. “This is how I will park every time I visit and I encourage my fellow comrades to do the same!”.

A Fantastic Idea from Vigilante Truck Driver Trent Ch.

Statistically, one hundred percent of the time that a truck is parked in the wrong location, it becomes a hazard to motorists who need to see where they are going. Thanks to Mr Ch’s stroke of genius, not a single vehicle can go past, avoiding the area of concern completely!

The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops.

Sturt Highway upgrade: Barmera intersection to receive multimillion dollar makeover to improve efficiency

Road works have officially begun. The intersection east of Barmera on the Old Sturt Highway is set to receive a complete makeover, with the SA department of Infrastructure and Transport dedicating a whopping $30m towards the project. The aim of the project is to increase efficiency and make it easier to navigate, as the current intersection has received numerous complaints about the complexity of it.

“The current intersection is far too complicated – it’s a safety hazard.”

“We have to face the facts here, the current intersection is too complex for Riverland drivers to understand,” SA Infastructure and Transport spokesman Roy D Workes claims.

“When you’ve got a T-intersection, that’s already trouble, then you take into account the turning lane that goes towards Monash, and that only results in more chaos and confusion.” Mr Workes continued.

The proposed redesign aims to simplify the current intersection, making it quicker and easier for vehicles to navigate. SA Infrastructure and Transport have released a concept image to show the new design.

‘Simple and efficient’ – The new redesign aims to improve the flow of traffic.

With the work already underway, residents can expect the redesign to be completed by mid-2023.

The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops.

Our Lady of the River kicks off Easter celebration with sacrifice to the River Lady

“O lady of the river, take this sacrifice to the watery depths, and spare us from your wrath.”

The Easter weekend is upon us, and while most Riverlanders are celebrating with chocolate eggs, this small Church in Berri has a rather unique way of starting the holiday.

“It is a sacred tradition that dates back to the 1950’s.”

“While our church was built on the foundation of appeasing the River Lady, it wasn’t until the devastating flood of 1956 where we realised her true power.” Head Priest Walter Monza said.

“After seeing the damage that our region sustained from the floodwater, we knew something drastic had to be done, and so we began the annual tradition of delivering sacrifices into the Murray River to ward off the River Lady’s wrath.” Priest Walter continued.

But who exactly is the River Lady?

The church believes the River Lady to be a powerful entity that lives beneath the Murray River, controlling the flow of water. This ‘River Lady’ must also be given offerings, generally human or animal sacrifices, in order to prevent her from creating rising water levels and flooding the land.

“While we don’t fully understand her or her motives, we do know that since we began the tradition of feeding her, she has not unleashed her wrath to the degree of the 1956 flood, and because of that we know what we are doing is working.” Priest Walter said.

The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops.

Police asking for public assistance after iconic Big Orange stolen overnight

Berri residents are in shock after an overnight heist has resulted in the town’s famous Big Orange landmark being illegally removed, and its current whereabouts being unknown. Weighing in at an impressive 15 tonnes and with a height of 15 meters, moving the structure is no easy feat, and SA Police are currently investigating at the scene to better narrow down how exactly it was stolen.

The site of The Big Orange after it was stolen.

“This was not a spontaneous theft. This was a extremely thought-out and choreographed operation.”

“Our top priority right now is working out how exactly it was removed. Once we have confirmed that we can start to track down where it was taken.” SA Police spokesperson Sgt. Biggs said.

“It is possible that the thieves loaded the orange onto the back of a truck and drove away with it, and we are currently searching the area for suspicious tire imprints in the dirt.”

“We are urging members of the public to come forward if they’ve seen or they know anything regarding the theft of The Big Orange.”

The Berri Council is yet to make a statement regarding the theft.

The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops.

Riverland residents growing concerned after 2022 brings record number of grape spills on the roads

‘Dangerous’ and ‘preventable’; Those are the two words that a majority of Riverland residents have been using in the past few weeks when describing the numerous spillages of grapes across our busy roads. With the busy harvest season here, farmers are looking to maximise profits, and as a consequence trucks are being overfilled and insufficiently secured, resulting in spillages around every corner.

“It is completely preventable.”

“This should not be happening, especially not at this frequency and severity.” Head of the Greater Riverland Area Produce Experts, Mark Spiller said.

“We’ve noticed in recent years a sharp increase in grape spillages, it’s at the point now where the council’s inaction to resolve this issue is going to cause serious road accidents. We need to address this issue now, and swiftly implement an alternative system of transporting produce, these dangerous trucks are not a long-term solution.”

Many concerned local residents have suggested the idea of a rail network as a safe and more efficient alternative, but the local councils are yet to respond regarding the idea.

The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops.

Berri Primary School adds forklift licence lessons to 2022 curriculum after receiving PM’s approval

Berri Primary School has anounced today their plans to introduce new forklift licence lessons for the 2022 curriculum, after Prime Minister Scott Morrison lowered the national forklift licence age to 12. With the change approved through parliament, it’s expected that most Riverland schools will follow suit.

The forklift license lessons will begin as early as 2nd grade, where the basic concepts of forklift operation and safety will be taught, but students will have to wait until 6th grade before they are allowed to operate one, with the school hoping that all students will move onto 7th grade with a full forklift license.

With funding help from the Berri council, the school has obtained a total of three forklifts, and is converting part of the oval into a simulated forklift environment, where students will be able to practice standard forklift operations safely.

The Riverlanderer will update as this story develops.