Highlands Rise and Shine | Tuesday, February 14, 2017

That’s a wrap fro today. Don’t forget to join us again tomorrow from 7.00AM.

The junior Lions kickstarted the rugby league season at the representative level recently. 

Six junior Mittagong Lions players played for Group 6 at the junior representatives gala day on February 4. 

The 2017 Barrengarry Conference dates have been announced. 

The first round of under-12 boys and girls competition will be played on March 5 in Moss Vale. Round two will be played May 28 and round three will be played on July 23. 

Organising a will is something Australians often put off, but estate planning can make a hard time a lot easier.

Carroll and O’Dea Lawyers partner Hanaan Indari, a wills and estates specialist, said several factors made estate planning more important than ever before.

$33 million- that’s how much weddings brought to the Highlands economy in 2015.

This area has always been a popular destination for weddings and the 2015 statistics prove it is a growing industry in the Southern Highlands.

Destination Southern Highlands group manager Steve Rosa said the region was fast becoming a premier  wedding destination in NSW.

A solar and battery seminar will be held in Mittagong on February 16.

Hosted by Simmark, Highlands residents will be introduced to the Tesla Powerwall 2 and be able to get personalised advice on their household’s actual energy usage.

► Settle in for an afternoon at the movies at the Community Technology Centre at Robertson.

Mr Personality? Or Mr Personality disorder? Find out in Woody Allen's madcap mockumentary about an identity crisis of hilarious proportions.

The Bea Cinémathèque Sunday Afternoon Cinema at CTC@Robertson will be held on February 19.

TRAFFIC:  All Southern Highlands roads are open and clear.

TRAINS: Commuters can expect a good service on the Southern Highlands today. 

WEATHER: A cloudy day with a slight (30%) chance of a shower this morning, winds SE 15 to 20 km/h becoming light in the late evening and a daytime maximum temperature of 22 can be expected in the Highlands today.

Here's a look at what the local weather is doing right now:

7.00AM:  Good morning and welcome to the Southern Highlands Rise and Shine. Over the next few hours we will be bringing you as much information as possible from across the Southern Highlands and nationally.

Weather, road conditions, breaking news, we will have it all - and we'd love to have your help! If there's anything happening in your part of the world, drop us a line! Email jackie.meyers@fairfaxmedia.com.au 

State of the nation

Need a national news snapshot first thing - well, we have you covered. 

Leadville, NSW: Family, friends and total strangers are emptying their pockets to help a young family who have been left gutted by weekend fires. More here.

► Cootamundra, NSW: Cootamundra producers have answered the call with hundreds of bales of hay heading to Central West regions devastated by bushfires over the weekend. Paul Manwaring and Andrew Glover are currently coordinating a fodder run to leave Cootamundra on Saturday morning bound for the small town of Coolah. More here.

Maitland, NSW: Young Maitland drivers are eligible to trial four new smart phone applications expected to replace log books for L-plate drivers in the near future. The state government chose Maitland, along with Sydney suburb Castle Hill, to host the trial and they are looking for 100 L-platers to test the new technology. More here.

Cessnock, NSW: Parishioners at Cessnock Baptist Church have been left saddened, but not defeated after their beloved church was engulfed by flames on Sunday evening. More here.

► Scone, NSW: Early this morning, on a property west of Scone, a wild dog that has eluded capture for six years all the while killing and maiming sheep was shot dead. Once the news of trapper Jonathan Randle’s success in destroying the legendary dog was passed onto landholder Norm Black, “Sofia Hill”, he cried tears of joy. More here.

► Strathfieldsaye, Victoria: CFA crews were called to a structure fire at a property in Saxby Drive, Strathfieldsaye, shortly at 6pm. A CFA spokesman said a double garage was “well alight” by the time firefighters from the Bendigo, Mandurang and Strathfieldsaye stations arrived. More here.

► Rushworth, Vic: Police have recovered the body of a young man believed to have drowned near Rushworth at the weekend. The body of the 21-year-old Rushworth man was found by police divers on the western side of the weir at Waranga Basin at 4.10pm, more than 48 hours after he went missing while swimming with friends on Saturday afternoon. More here.

Ballarat, Vic: A 14-year-old boy who racked up a half a million dollar crime spree across Ballarat has been released from custody after receiving a stern talking to from a magistrate. The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was told his ice-fuelled crime spree “exhibited truly shocking offending”. More here.

Mandurah, WA:  The man accused of murdering teenager Hayley Dodd appeared in Western Australia’s Supreme Court on Monday, where he again pleaded not guilty to the crime. More here.

National news

►  A combination of massive resources, unprecedented preparedness and good luck spared much of NSW from catastrophic bushfires over the weekend. More here.

► A "network of sexual perpetrators" used an Anglican church youth group to prey on young boys over a period of decades from the 1970s to the 1990s with church leaders failing to report allegations, a royal commission has found. More here.

► Sydney is facing a once-in-a-generation enrolment surge, a NSW Upper House inquiry into inner-city schools has heard, as the NSW Department of Education struggles to keep up with demand. More here.

► Islamic State has taken aim at several Australian religious scholars in its latest propaganda video, calling on followers to kill the sheikhs because they discourage violence. More here.

National weather radar

International news

► Jakarta: Animal welfare activists are calling for a ban on transporting dolphins by plane after filming footage that showed them being boxed into crates in a harness to take part in a travelling circus in Indonesia. More here.

Washington: Does the US have a traitor as its national security adviser? US President Donald Trump's pick of a wild conspiracy theorist as his national security adviser was always a time bomb, but who'd have thought that retired general Michael Flynn's credentials would become the stuff of national debate in the same news cycle as North Korea's seeming provocation of the new administration with another missile test? More here. More here.

On this day

1779 – James Cook is killed by Native Hawaiians near Kealakekua on the Island of Hawaii.

1849 – In New York City, James Knox Polk becomes the first serving President of the United States to have his photograph taken.

1876 – Alexander Graham Bell applies for a patent for the telephone, as does Elisha Gray.

1929 – Saint Valentine's Day Massacre: Seven people, six of them gangster rivals of Al Capone's gang, are murdered in Chicago.

1990 – The Voyager 1 spacecraft takes the photograph of planet Earth later become famous as Pale Blue Dot.

2005 – YouTube is launched by a group of college students, eventually becoming the largest video sharing website in the world and a main source for viral videos.

The faces of Australia: John 'the swagman' Cadoret

ONCE a jolly swagman worked at a Melbourne bank, tired of his office job, camped behind a desk.

So he packed up his things and he headed for the open road, 40 years on and he is yet to take a rest.

Born in 1954 in the Western Victorian town of Minyip, John Cadoret was in his early twenties when he decided to leave his shared flat and party life behind, simply because he wanted to.