Shine On

It definitely did for the 7th annual Olivia Newton-John Wellness Walk and Research Run (WWRR) held this year in the city. Mr Rosanna and I signed up for the run last year when it was held at La Trobe University but pulled out due to sickness on the day. This year, I was joined by my colleagues in the Alumni and Advancement Office (below) as well as other staff members under the Team La Trobe banner given we are the event’s University and Research Partner.

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Me in the middle with my workmates

I caught the train in from Clifton Hill station which was full of WWRR runners and walkers including those in green wigs and matching tutus! I spied Olivia Newton-John herself (below) doing media as I entered the Alexandra Gardens so was able to get a shot up close although her minder was keeping a watch on those who strayed too far in. It was great to find my friends at the Team La Trobe tent where we were able to check in our bags before setting off on our 5km walk past the Shrine and on to the Botanical Gardens (Tan) track going anti-clockwise. There were various cheers squads and live entertainment to keep us amused along the way and yes, they did play Let’s Get Physical as well as songs from Grease during the warm up!

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While it was a bit overcast and cooler when I arrived, by the time we’d clocked half way around the Tan we were in full sun and after walking through the finish line and collecting our medals, I left the gardens in the heat of the day with the hot sun shining down.

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I have been out and about this past week celebrating birthdays with family and friends including a mid-week dinner at Spanish restaurant Nomada located just off Brunswick Street in Fitzroy. My friend Mel had tried to book Rice Paper Scissors and Transformer Fitzroy on my suggestion but I was happy we ended up at Nomada as the food was beautiful – lots of seafood and vegetarian options and delicious starters including cuttlefish on mash, fresh oysters, eel on toast tapas, prawns or slow cooked lamb with a delicious broccoli, quinoa and lime salad finished off with freshly cooked churros donuts sitting in a hot chocolate sauce – delicious! There was a bit of break in between due to two big tables of diners including ours but I would definitely go back again for a meal.

Closer to home, I finally had lunch at Stix & Stones in Lower Plenty (above and below) on another beautiful sunny day and it was also very good. The Adventure Playground is closed and apparently in the early days, you could sit outside with a picnic rug but it’s now the main internal dining space and alfresco tables and stools outside. Mr Rosanna and I actually shared a number of starters including the salt and pepper squid and pork belly along with a Greek salad and fries. We also shared the sticky date pudding dessert and the service was great – we were very much looked after by the lovely team there. I only had two small criticisms – the 90s rock music was a little loud (we had older family members with us who struggled to hear) and I wish they had real not fake indoor plants but all in all, it’s good to have a place like it located so close to home. And for those lucky enough to be seated outside amongst the gum trees, it makes for an atmospheric natural dining environment.

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It’s all happening in Lower Plenty as Shine On: A Night of Networking and Inspiration is being held at the Rosanna Golf Club on Wednesday 20 November from 7 – 9.30pm. Jules Lund is the keynote speaker and host and outside of his TV and radio commitments, he has founded TRIBE – a tech empire that connects social media influencers with leading brands. Tickets are now on sale and I’ve already got mine for the event which is being run by Banyule Business.

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