This week is NAIDOC week, celebrating the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The theme of this year's celebrations is 'Always Was, Always Will Be', which recognises that First Nations people have occupied and cared for this continent for over 65,000 years.

Check out this list from Hobsons Bay Libraries of books and films from the online collection that celebrate the amazing culture and history of our First Nations people.


Art, Craft and Other Things to Keep You Busy

DIY Jewellery Trays

Jana Kunnert demonstrates a range of techniques for making lovely jewellery dishes using imprinting with different leaves and grasses.

The video covers a selection of different design ideas using acrylic paints and some other simple items such as washi tape.


Laneway Learning

Promoting itself as offering 'cheap, fun classes in anything and everything', Laneway Learning has an eclectic mix of online courses available covering everything from arts and crafts and cooking, to philosophy and Burlesque. Check out the links below for a sample of what is on offer. 




Snowman Gift Box

This crochet snowman bag is a cute gift wrapping idea or simply a fluffy bit of festive cheer to display around the house. You could also fill him with chocolates or other small fun things to use as a stocking stuffer.

There is no video with this pattern, but it is super easy to follow. 


2020 Spring into Summer Series

This free program from the City of Maribyrnong offers a range of 4-week health and wellbeing programs and this year there is a big selection of programs being delivered online.

There's a different activity on each day of the week starting on Monday 23 November.


Handcrafted Christmas Crafts

Super quick and easy images to paint for your festive crafts, these images would suit greeting cards, gift tags and labels for handmade items.

The video shows how to make four variations on a classic Christmas scene using watercolours to give your cards some variety.


Happy Birthday Mickey Mouse

Altona-Laverton Historical Society

November 18, 1928 is the birthday of Disney’s most famous character ‘Mickey Mouse’.

Mickey was the star of Steamboat Willie an American animated short film directed by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks. It was produced in black-and-white by Walt Disney Studios and was released by Celebrity Productions.

The cartoon is considered the debut of Mickey Mouse and his girlfriend Minnie, although both characters appeared several months earlier in a test screening of Plane Crazy

Steamboat Willie was the third of Mickey's films to be produced, but was the first to be distributed because Walt Disney, having seen The Jazz Singer, had committed himself to producing one of the first fully synchronized sound cartoons. Disney understood from early on that synchronized sound was the future of film. Steamboat Willie became the most popular cartoon of its day. 

The film has received wide critical acclaim, not only for introducing one of the world's most popular cartoon characters, but for its technical innovation. In 1994, members of the animation field voted Steamboat Willie 13th in the book The 50 Greatest Cartoons, which listed the greatest cartoons of all time. In 1998 the film was selected for preservation in the United States' National Film Registry for being deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant." 

Happy Birthday Mickey. 

Garden Gurus Tips

Building a Climate Resilient future: Permaculture 101


An introduction to the principles of permaculture and how they can be used in your garden to create a balanced sustainable environment.

Session will also look at how these principles can be used to improve resilience in the face of a changing climate. 

Saturday 28 November, 2pm-4pm 


Edible weeds and flowers in your garden

Many of the plants we commonly consider weeds are actually nutritious and tasty greens that you can use in the kitchen.

Check out this handy guide from permaculture group Milkwood for information on some of the common plants that could be saved from the compost and used in the kitchen.


Gifts from the Kitchen

Continuing our theme of a homemade Christmas, this week’s recipe is about trying new flavours and ideas. This syrup is for gingerbread lovers (and that would be me!) – a teaspoon or two could be stirred into coffee or tea, drizzle over pancakes or yoghurt. It could also be used as a glaze for chicken or pork chops.

I have an eclectic collection of bottles at home – ones I’ve saved that would look great with a label to say what it is and what it can be used for. It is an inexpensive recipe to make and one that I can almost guarantee will be the talk of the Christmas table!


Gingerbread Spiced Syrup

  • 2 cinnamon sticks (3 inches), broken into pieces
  • 16 whole cloves
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon whole allspice
  • 1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Place the first 5 ingredients on a double thickness of cheesecloth; bring up corners of cloth and tie with string to form a bag.
  • In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, water, honey, nutmeg and spice bag; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, until syrup reaches desired consistency, 30-45 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat; cool to room temperature. Discard spice bag; transfer syrup to airtight containers. Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.
Recipe from Taste of Home

Vicki Milliken - Merck Gets A Friend

In July 2019, with the blessing of my husband I took a break from my corporate career to pursue a passion to write. Merck Gets a Friend, a children’s picture book, started as an assignment for my creative writing course at CAE. The seedling of an idea was nurtured by children's author and course teacher, Rachel Flynn, and class mates, Sue, Judi, Courtney and Georgia. When the course ended abruptly after six months, I was at a loss. Should I enrol in a new course? Seek interest from a traditional publishing house? Or go it alone? Fellow Williamstown children's author, Stella Stamatakis, introduced me to a publishing coach, and I decided to pursue self-publishing.
Our golden retriever, Merck, was an easy choice for the story. He came into our lives in April of 2007. I’d never owned a dog before. Growing up our family lived next-door to an oil terminal. The combination of heavy vehicles and the lack of a front fence meant a budgie was a better choice for a pet. So, when my husband Andrew and I made the decision to get a dog I was very excited. We named him after Eddy Merckx, the pro-cyclist – dropping the ‘x’.

Merck was a mischievous puppy – aren’t they all! He loved reducing weeping cherry trees to match sticks; eating my tomatoes the minute they showed a hint of red – who said dogs are colour blind; and landscaping our backyard. Until he was six or seven years old, off lead excursions were always full of uncertainty. Well that’s not strictly true – I always certain he wouldn’t come when he was called, at least not the first or second time. And especially around water. He absolutely loved swimming. I remember one winter’s morning on Williamstown Beach – five degrees. He'd sprinted along the beach and plunged into the water. When I called him, he stood there, and refused to come out. I was so mad, I marched into the water, dressed in my runners, tracksuit pants and fleece, slipped the collar around his neck and squelched home!

When Merck was six, my husband’s sister died unexpectedly and Charlie, her West Highland Terrier came to live with us. Merck was a little put out and not at all sure what to make of the fact that Charlie had moved in and was competing for space, food, toys and attention.
Merck Gets a Friend is the story of how they became friends, although I have taken some creative licence. Unfortunately, Merck passed away before the book could be published, but I have no doubt he would have given it his paw of approval.

Where can you buy Merck Gets a Friend?
My website: (Australia only)
Book and Paper Bookshop Williamstown (Douglas Pde)
Or at Booktopia

Stuff to Keep the Kids Busy

Story Talks

Go camping in Queensland, play with frogs, and venture deep into the mysterious mangroves where danger lurks in this video series with famed storyteller Boori Monty Pryor.

Suitable for kids aged 6-12 and featuring Auslan interpretation, each video ends with an engaging activity to activate and inspire young creative minds.


Victorian Youth Week 2020

Hobsons Bay UP are delivering a series of programs in recognition of Victorian Youth Week 2020. 

This is a great time to celebrate the incredible young people in our community and the contribution they make. Programs are free for young people aged 12-25 who live, study and/or recreate in Hobsons Bay.


Wellbeing & Selfcare

Learn how to be happier

10 Days of Happiness is a free 10-day online coaching program which guides you through daily actions for happier living.

Each day you will receive an email with a task for the day. It is designed for challenging times, based on the latest research from positive psychology, neuroscience, and behavioural science.


Business Workshops Online


Finance Fundamentals

If you are making a profit but still struggling to pay the bills during tough times, then this two-hour workshop provides tips for improving your cash flow. Learn how to identify the key drivers of cashflow and focus on improving the performance of those drivers, manage stock, suppliers and debtors, and how to preare a cash flow forecast.

16 November 2020 at 6.30pm Via ZOOM


Navigating COVID-19 Support & Opportunities

Keeping your small business on track Online Workshop There’s no doubt that recent events have challenged many small businesses in Victoria. If you are having difficulties in making ends meet, or you are unclear about the steps to take in seeking financial support, this workshop is designed to help sole traders and small business owners in metro and regional Victoria. The workshop provides guidance to tackle the burning issues concerning people working in home-based, retail, hospitality and other affected small businesses.

Wednesday 25 November at 6pm Via ZOOM


Support Services Hobsons Bay and Surrounding Suburbs

If you, or someone you know, has been impacted financially by the pandemic or is facing issues to do with housing or family violence, there is a list of organisations that can provide support on our website.


Hobsons Bay City Council is also providing a range of support for individuals and community groups experiencing financial hardship. There is also a range of emergency relif and support available through Hobsons Bay Has Heart. See this flyer for details.



The Extreme Hardship Support Program is providing support to Victorians who:
  • are unable to access Commonwealth income support (including JobKeeper and JobSeeker) or the International Student Emergency Relief Fund
  • have very limited income, savings or community support.
  • and are a temporary or provisional visa holder, or undocumented migrant

Financial Counselling is a free service that can people assist in dealing with a range of financial issues including debts and fines, early release of superannuation, No Interest Loans, emergency relief and Utility Relief Grants. 


If you need support with something not covered in here, please get in touch with us and we can refer you to the appropriate service.
We acknowledge that we are on traditional lands of the Kulin Nation and recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. We acknowledge that sovereignty was never ceded, and we pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging, and, through them, to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
Copyright © 2020 Louis Joel Arts & Community Centre, All rights reserved.

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