The Weekend Series: five things we are vibing in March
The month of March feels a little lost in no man’s land: the excitement of the new year is long forgotten and the sweet bingeing of Easter is yet to begin. But fear not, dear friends, for we have once again dutifully scoured the globe to bring you a taste of the best things happening this month. Think major moves in the war on plastic, Australia’s biggest ocean park and a new hashtag challenge.
Now we know inspiration can come from the most unlikely of places, but retro shag rugs inspiring baked goods? Mind-blowing. Brought to you by the baking goddess who created cacti cupcakes, NYE disco ball cupcakes and edible snow globes, ‘shag cakes’ boast an impressively textured buttercream frosting and as many colours as your parents’ interior design palette of the ’60s. LA-based stylist/designer/baker Alana Jones-Mann has been sharing her wonderfully wacky dessert experiments online since 2013 – take a peek here and here for the ultimate drool fest.
Image: Alana Jones-Mann
Budweiser partners with #SeeHer
There’s no doubt we’ve come a long way in recent decades to close the gender inequality gap. While it’s by no means a tight seal yet, the clever chaps at Budweiser have taken another positive step to help correct some of the wrongs of the past. If you’ve cast an eye over their print ads from the ’50s and ’60s, you’ll notice a common theme of subservient women obediently pouring beers to please their husbands. Now the brewing giant has attempted to make amends, updating three of its old print campaigns in partnership with the #SeeHer movement in honour of International Women’s Day to show women in more balanced and empowered roles.
Image: The Drum
Bacchus Brewing Co. nabs award
In other beer-related news, we were stoked to hear that our mates at Bacchus Brewing Co. took out the title of Champion Beer Utilising Desalinated Water supported by Seqwater at The Royal Queensland Food and Wine Show (RQFWS) Beer Awards this week. Their delightful Belgian Mocha Stout (draught) beat 36 other entries to nab the coveted award and a $10,000 education bursary. The clever Capalaba brewers are well known for their innovative dessert beers and this particular creation is available on tap right now at the brewery. Meanwhile, the classic German beer Burleigh Bock by Burleigh Brewing Company beat more than 300 entries to claim the title of Grand Champion Beer and a $5,000 education bursary. Find the full list of winners here.
Ban on single-use plastics
Convicts, MONA and Cascade Brewery – Hobart has been known for many things, but now it’s being praised as the first Australian city to ban single-use plastics. Earlier this month, City of Hobart councillors voted in favour of new by-laws banning single-use plastics, including straws, cutlery, cups and takeaway food containers smaller than one litre in volume that are sold directly to customers. Businesses will be given six months to a year to phase the plastics out, or face fines if they don’t comply. The ban is expected to come into effect later this year or early 2020, following public consultation.
Image: City of Hobart
Australia’s biggest water park
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and the state government have released the final draft of The Southport Spit (The Spit) Master Plan, showcasing an incredible community space and the country’s biggest water park. The plan will secure the future of 138 hectares of green space (just below London’s Hyde Park at 142 hectares), while 4000 sqm will be set aside for a restored littoral rainforest and new features will include a curlew habitat, underwater sculpture garden for divers, light rail extension to Sea World, super yacht marina, improved cycle and walkways through the dunes and even a selfie tower to snap the best shots of the Gold Coast skyline. Check out this video summarising the plan and have your say at a community drop-in session or by completing the online survey before the end of the month.
Over the past 12 years, we’ve found many weird and wonderful uses for hashtags. There have been historically significant movements, like #BlackLivesMatter and #MeToo, and there have been less, erm, significant tags that have still blown up on social media. But this month, a seemingly innocuous hashtag has kicked off a global environmental campaign. The #trashtag challenge reportedly went viral after a reddit user posted a photo of someone who had completed the challenge with the caption: “Here is a new #challenge for all you bored teens. Take a photo of an area that needs some cleaning or maintenance then take a photo after you have done something about it, and post it here.” The challenge has now spread across the world, from Mumbai to Malaysia.