In a year dominated by COVID-19, it was great to see other Canberra news still make headlines.
From stories of survival, community spirit, growth and development and a few eerie crawls, there was plenty to read about in a city that continued to thrive despite shutdowns.
Here’s a selection of the stories you clicked on the most in 2021.
10. LEGO fans are queuing up around the block to open the new Canberra store
It was a grand opening for Canberra’s first official LEGO store.
People waited up to two hours around the block to be the first in the certified LEGO store.
Hundreds of fans waited patiently in a queue that was reportedly up to a mile long, winding out of downtown and along Bunda Street.
9. The government pays out $ 37,000 in holes, but Taylah’s fight continues
Holes are always a big issue in Canberra and even more so with all the rain this year.
Nearly 40 Canberrans received payments for damage to their cars from holes, but Higgins’ wife Taylah Kolaric was not one of them.
She struggled to come up with a claim for over a year after driving through a cold mix that had been flushed out of a stretch of holes on Belconnen Way in Hawker, where she had painted her white FG Falcon.
After 65 years, it’s time to say goodbye to the old Batemans Bay Bridge
It was a sad farewell when the iconic Batemans Bay Bridge over the Clyde River was taken down this year.
The move ended many years of frustration for boat owners and motorists, but changed the face of the coastal city forever.
For the past 65 years, the sight of the vertical drawbridge has served as a welcome for residents and visitors who became synonymous with the city itself.
7. Gary’s life: study of snake tracking reveals the habits of the eastern browns of Canberra
Gary, a five- or six-year-old male eastern brown snake, snuck into our hearts in 2021.
The snake is one of five eastern browns captured during the summer, tagged and released as part of the ACT Snake Tracking Project in how the cryptic creatures use Canberra’s suburban environment.
“My five-year-old daughter called him Gary because she thought it would be a great name for a snake,” says Gavin Smith, a certified snake catcher, researcher and associate professor at the Australian National University.
Rebuilding the multi-million dollar market will bring a taste of Barcelona to the Belconn
Ambitious plans were launched to see Belconnen become home to a fresh food market that will envy other Australian cities.
The multi-million-dollar redevelopment of Belconnen Fresh Food Markets aims to transform the suburban shopping center into a craft food and entertainment area that will be the envy of Australia.
The project will transform the 45-year-old market into a 4,300-square-foot food mecca with indoor and outdoor dining, food demonstration areas, restaurants, bars and agricultural products from some of the region’s best farmers and fishermen.
5. ‘Bizarre’ centipede plague causes chaos in homes in NSW and ACT
Have you noticed any 100-legged uninvited guests in your house this year? If so, you are not alone.
Hundreds of people shared their close encounters with a plague of millipedes that invaded homes across Canberra and the NSW South Coast, Southern Tablelands and Central West.
A resident of Yass, near Canberra, said her family turned off their lights at night to prevent the millipedes from entering.
4. Have you been pinged on Northbourne Avenue? Here’s what you can do about it
Thousands of Canberrans were caught with lead feet in Northbourne Avenue and Barry Drive’s new 40km / h zone.
The 40 km / h zone has quickly become a real pain point for motorists – as evidenced by the 24,050 infringement notices issued from 5 July to 3 August.
It cashed in $ 1.6 million and caught more than 6,000 drivers a week, many looking for ways to reduce the financial penalty immediately or alleviate it completely.
3. “It’s not just his fault”: Dickson cafe owner calls for multicultural education after racist abuse
When a group of Canberra teens were filmed racistly harassing Dickson cafe staff, the owner used the incident to promote education, not hate.
The video taken by staff at the People’s Gallery in Dickson showed a boy abusing racist staff before spitting on the cafe’s outdoor table.
Cafe owner Vincent Chen said he did not want to visit hate among the children involved, but rather wanted to use the incident to educate the community about racism.
2. Teenage girl brought into the air to Sydney after an accident at Kambah Adventure Playground ‘very lucky to be alive’
A crazy accident at Kambah Adventure Playground in September led to a 14-year-old girl being flown to Westmead Hospital in Sydney with a broken spine.
Tahlia Floyer reached the end of the flying fox at Kambah Adventure Playground with such force that she rolled up in the air and landed on her head and neck, breaking three vertebrae.
The incident prompted her mother to call for a risk assessment of the popular flying fox equipment.
1. ‘I do not want anyone to die because of me’: COVID-19 ‘patient zero’ speaks out
The man, who is believed to have triggered Canberra’s current COVID-19 lockdown, spoke from his hospital beds to dispel rumors that he had brought the infection over himself by acting illegally.
Cedric Nyamsi, 27, was struck flat by the virus.
He told Regional media he is as mystified as anyone else about how he got it.