Milestones for two Dimboola footballers

TRUE ROOS: Dimboola players Glenn Ross and Allistair McKinnon will play their 300th and 250th club games respectively tomorrow. Picture: PAUL CARRACHERDIMBOOLA wants to honour two of its stalwarts with a win tomorrow against Horsham Saints.
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Glenn Ross, 39, and Allistair McKinnon, 31, will chalk up milestones.

Ross will play his 300th club game for Dimboola and McKinnon his 250th.

Roo coach Gary Davidson said it was a significant occasion for the club.

"It's a great achievement by both guys. Not that many players play that many games for one club now," Davidson said.

"Both have been very loyal to Dimboola and good senior footballers over their careers."

Ross made his senior debut for the Wimmera Football League club at 17 in 1991.

He has gone on to play 272 senior and 28 reserves games for Dimboola.

At a guess, Ross suspects he has played close to 400 games of football, having spent four years at Jeparit, Jeparit-Rainbow and Pimpinio.

McKinnon has captained the Roos for 10 years, making 239 senior appearances and playing 11 reserves matches.

He spent two seasons at Jeparit-Rainbow.

Both players are eyeing an elusive Dimboola premiership.

The Roos are third on the ladder and in a strong position to push for a grand final spot.

Ross and McKinnon both list the club's 2005 and 2006 grand final losses as their career highlights.

"It was pretty special to play in back-to-back grand finals but unfortunately we didn't win them," Ross said.

"This year we should go pretty close if all goes well.

"We're travelling not too badly but we can't get ahead of ourselves."

McKinnon said it was hard to reflect on his career while he was still playing. He said there was a burning desire to win a flag.

"You are never happy until you get to the end and reflect," McKinnon said.

"You are always trying to get better."

McKinnon said a win against fifth-placed Saints tomorrow was at the forefront of his mind.

"You don't like to lose any game and milestone games you tend to remember more," he said.

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Dancers get in the zone for Horsham concert

GETTING READY: Lexy Wade waits for her turn on stage during a dress rehearsal for The Dancers Zone. The Horsham dance school will have its concert on Sunday. Picture: PAUL CARRACHERTHE Dancers Zone students will don masks and wow the audience with their masquerade-themed dance concert on Sunday.
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The Horsham dance school was previously named LA Tap and Jazz.

Principal instructor Lynne Johns said students from two years old to adults would perform about 40 items in the concert.

She said the groups had been rehearsing since the start of the year.

"It's really cool. Everyone's excited for it,'' she said. "I'm really looking forward to the weekend.''

Ms Johns said there were two concerts, from 11am and 2.30pm at Horsham Theatre.

She encouraged people to go along.

"It's a great, entertaining day,'' she said.

"There's a variety of routines. There's modern music and not so modern music. It's such a variety day.''

Ms Johns thanked everyone who had helped prepare for the concert, including student teachers and people who helped with masks and costumes.

She gave Nadine Short special thanks for her work on the costumes.

Ms Johns said people could buy tickets at the door or at Horsham Centre Cinemas.

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Snow possible in the Grampians today

RAIN is likely to continue across the Wimmera this morning and snow is possible in the Grampians.
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The region received a good soak yesterday and Wednesday, with Bureau of Meteorology figures showing Horsham, Stawell, Ararat, Mount William and Nhill all recorded 10 millimetres or more between 9am Wednesday and 9am yesterday.

Warracknabeal had five millimetres in the same period, Hopetoun recorded four millimetres and Walpeup had three millimetres.

By 1pm yesterday Horsham had received a further 3.4 millimetres while Mount William received another six.

Bureau spokesman David Morrison said the bureau was expecting rainfall to total up to 50 millimetres in the Grampians and 30 millimetres for towns as far north as Horsham by the end of today.

He said the rain was moving in a thick band across the state and more was expected this morning as a cold front moved across the region.

"With the chance of picking up some good rain totals in the Grampians today the height at which snow is expected is down to 600 metres, so there is the possibility light snow will fall in the Grampians," he said.

Mr Morrison said showers were expected in and around Horsham during the coming days.

"There will be a few showers on Saturday and a shower or two on Sunday," he said.

"Beyond that Wednesday is looking quite okay because there will be a high pressure system over the area, which means clear skies, still conditions and frosty mornings."

Mr Morrison said conditions were tracking as expected for this time of year.

"In Horsham the minimum average temperature for the month so far is three degrees Celsius and the longer term average is 3.5 degrees," he said.

"The average maximum temperature for June so far is 14.9 degrees, and the long-term average is 14.5 degrees.

"Horsham has received 36.3 millimetres of rain for the month so far, exceeding the average rainfall for June by 0.2 millimetres. With rain expected over the next few days that figure will be higher."

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Shed rules upset Ararat Rural City Council

ARARAT Rural City Council has urged the Building Commission to withdraw draft guidelines which require owners of large farm sheds to install extra features such as toilets and disabled access.
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Director of council services Neil Manning said the commission had not specifically directed building surveyors on how to classify farm sheds in the past.

"Building surveyors had their own way of doing things and previously, building surveyors would say it might be a big shed but it's only a hay shed so it does not need anything else like toilets," he said."So they classed it as an ordinary shed.

"Now the direction is, these sheds must comply with these specific classifications. They don't define how large is large.

"They say they should not be treated as Class 10a sheds, which are ordinary garages or farm sheds, but they should be called either warehouses or factories, which are Class 7 or 8.

"That means a whole bunch of extra things are required; they must have disabled access, potentially disabled toilets and ordinary toilets, for what could just be a hay shed.

"We are writing letters to the commission and politicians.

"We are not happy with the draft; it should be withdrawn until things are sorted out."

A Wimmera business owner, who declined to be named, said the draft regulations would have 'horrific implications' for the farming community.

He said he was planning to fight the issue and hoped to seek a further ruling on the classification.

The commission sent a Draft Practice Note to industry which explains existing classification principles under the national Building Code of Australia.

A commission spokeswoman said the commission was not proposing the reclassification of farm buildings, but was clarifying classifications for farm buildings which had existed since 1990.

"The responsibility for the classification of a building falls to the building surveyor issuing the permit, either municipal or private," she said.

"It is the responsibility of the surveyor to decide what facilities are required in the building according to the classification they have determined.

"Typically, a small hay shed would be classified as a Class 10a building and would not require toilets, exit signs or other fire safety features.

"However, some farm buildings are extremely large structures and are also workplaces, and are therefore required to comply with the classification requirements for that type of building.''

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VFF applauds register for foreign-owned land

VICTORIAN Farmers Federation vice-president David Jochinke has welcomed the Federal Government's decision to establish a register for foreign-owned agricultural land.
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But he said the decision was just one piece of a much larger puzzle.

The government will establish a working group to investigate what ownership interests should be included in the register and how the register would interact with existing state and territory land title registers.

The VFF annual conference in April agreed to establish a comprehensive register of all agricultural land and water assets owned by foreign persons or enterprises.

Members also voted to reduce the threshold trigger for assessment by the Foreign Investment Review Board for foreign purchases to $5 million.

Mr Jochinke, who farms at Murra Warra, said the VFF wanted a register to get a better understanding of how much Australian land was foreign owned.

"We don't want to jump at shadows, because we realise Australia has been built with foreign investment," he said.

"We are pleased with the decision but that is just the first part.

"The second step is once we have gathered the information, what thresholds are we going to use. It comes down to a framework for what we and the government want the Australian agricultural landscape to look like."

VFF president Peter Tuohey said a register was long overdue.

"A register is not about reducing foreign investment, it's about gauging the level of investment in real time," he said.

"The VFF will take a strong interest in this working group and provide information and comment to support the establishment of the register."

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Horsham Hornets aim to break mid-season rut

HORSHAM Hornets co-coach Damien Kilpatrick is confident the side can turn its lacklustre form around against Western Port tomorrow night.
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The Wimmera Roadways Hornets slipped to third on the Big V division two ladder following their 75-70 loss to ladder leaders Craigieburn Eagles in a top-of-the-table clash on Saturday night.

The Hornets' four losses have come against fellow top four sides Craigieburn twice, Melton and Keysborough.

Kilpatrick said Horsham knew its best basketball was capable of beating the competition's best sides.

"As long as we finish in the top four, we know we can still challenge them," he said. "We've had four losses from 14 games. In three games we played terrible basketball but only lost by two or three points."

Kilpatrick said the Hornets, who flew out of the blocks and won their opening seven matches, were in a rut.

"The problem at the moment and what we are trying to resolve is playing as a team and playing for four quarters," he said. "All players are out of form and we're still only losing by a couple of points.

"If we find form we'll be all right but we need to find it now."

Kilpatrick said it was vital the Hornets clinched a win away against the Steelers tomorrow night.

The sixth-placed Steelers are coming off two losses, including dropping a game to bottom-placed Pakenham.

Kilpatrick said the Hornets could not afford to be complacent.

"They will be pretty angry and upset and we are in a form slump at the moment," Kilpatrick said.

The Hornets' line-up will remain unchanged until centre Stuart Robinson returned from overseas and teenage guard Darcy Tucker becomes available after Vic Country under-16 commitments.

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Medal hopes for St Brigid’s College aerobics teams

PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT: Energisers rehearsed in front of their St Brigid’s College peers on Thursday ahead of the Schoolaerobics State Championships in Geelong on Sunday. Picture: PAUL CARRACHERST BRIGID'S College will send three teams to the Schoolaerobics State Championships in Geelong on Sunday.
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Energetic Stars will compete in stage two and Enerjets and Energisers in stage one open.

The Stars won the stage one state title in 2011 and have won their six competitions to date.

The Stars are made up of year 11 students, the Energisers of students in years eight to 10 and the Enerjets of year seven and eight students.

St Brigid's College co-coach Amanda Wik said all three teams were realistic chances of earning a call-up to the Schoolaerobics National Championships in Sydney in August.

The winning state championship team from each section earns automatic entry to the nationals, while judges use their discretion, taking into account team scores, to invite other teams.

"All the teams have trained really hard since the preliminary finals five weeks ago," Wik said.

"We are hoping all teams medal and progress to the national championships."

Wik said teams were quietly confident.

"The Stars are extra nervous because they have won six out of six," she said.

Wik said the teams wanted to thank St Brigid's College, parents and sponsors.

"They've made this all possible and it's been a fun journey to get to the state championships," she said.

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A dog’s life: Runaway pooch’s tale

AVAILABLE FOR ADOPTION: Horsham PAWS member and foster carer Guin Cleminson with a dog she is fostering. The dog needs a permanent home. Picture: PAUL CARRACHERTWO Horsham foster carers have encouraged other people to take on volunteer work for animals.
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Guin Cleminson and Verity Drysdale are both Horsham People for Animal Welfare and Support members and foster carers.

Miss Cleminson said her involvement in the group led her to become a foster carer.

"I adopted a dog and two cats through Horsham PAWS and I'm a paying member each year,'' she said.

"They asked me if I'd be interested in being a foster carer. It's really good.''

Miss Cleminson said she had enjoyed her experience as a carer so far.

"Just knowing you're giving a little dog a better life, even if it's only a temporary role, is amazing,'' she said.

"They respond so quickly to any attention, it's really nice.''

Miss Cleminson encouraged other people to consider becoming foster carers.

She said it was ideal for people who could not commit to a pet for life.

"It wouldn't be a 10-15 year commitment,'' she said.

"People considering getting a pet for their kids could do fostering.

"They could see if their kids are helping to take it for walks and looking after it properly.''

Miss Cleminson said she also enjoyed being part of the community.

Miss Drysdale said she had been foster caring for months and loved every moment of it.

She said through fostering an animal, she learnt what it liked or did not like, and its temperament.

"I can tell the new adoptive parents about what the dog is like, which helps,'' she said.

Miss Drysdale said her last foster pet, a dog named Patch, had been with her for six weeks before being adopted.

She said typically the process was much faster, with her first foster dog staying a few days before being adopted.

Miss Drysdale said it was important more people took on foster caring. She said it gave pound animals a second life.

"It gives a chance to rehouse as many dogs and cats as we can,'' she said.

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Weather warning for Wimmera sheep breeders

Take care of the flock.THE Bureau of Meteorology has warned sheep and lambs in the Wimmera are at high risk as a rain band crosses the region today and tomorrow.
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The band will bring with it cold temperatures, rain and strong north-westerly winds.

The bureau has warned that sheep and lambs exposed to these conditions are at high risk of dying.

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CMI Horsham to close

The Australian Manufacturing Workers Union said it will work to secure employee entitlements.CMI Horsham will close, with 29 employees to be made redundant.
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CMI Industrial receivers and managers McGrathNichol announced this morning that after a review of operations and an unsuccessful sale campaign, it would start the wind down of CMI Industrial's Horsham foundry.

The process is expected to be completed by July 6.

Receivers failed to find a buyer for the Horsham CMI site.

Administrator Keith Crawford said the financial outlook for the business was not strong enough to support continued trading.

Australian Manufacturing Workers Union assistant state secretary Leigh Diehm said the union had done everything possible to keep the site open, but without a buyer for the company it had proved impossible.

Mr Diehm said the union would fight for workers to receive all entitlements.

"We have to remain positive that the other CMI sites currently under administration that a buyer can be found,'' he said.

"This is truly devastating for those workers who have undergone this period of tremendous uncertainty and will now find themselves without work.''

For more see Friday's Mail-Times.

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