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Inner Western Courier Thursday Not Used Anymore : July 16 2008
INNER-WEST WEEKLY, Thursday, July 17, 2008 11 NEWS www.innerwestweekly.com.au Duo makes the break Noel O'Keeffe and Len Asprey prepare for the swim from Alcatraz Island (above) and after the swim with Elizabeth Kegode (top right) and The Rock (bottom right). LAUREN MURADA A GREAT escape was what two Inner West residents had in mind when they flew half way around the world to swim away from the infamous Alcatraz prison. Braving the cold and dangerous conditions, Len Asprey, 58, and Noel O'Keeffe, 41, swam 2.5km from Alcatraz Island to Aquatic Park in San Francisco on June 28 in Sharkfest '08. ''I know they had a few people going to hospital with hypothermia,'' Mr Asprey said, with the water temperature at 14C. They also faced sharks and sea lions while competing in the annual event. ''I want to signal to the com- munity that age doesn't matter and you can get out there and do something exciting and innovative,'' Mr Asprey said. The Concord resident finished his swim from the rock in 54 minutes, slightly slower than last year. ''I planned to try and beat last year's time but the conditions were worse. The water was chopped up and the current was strong,'' Mr Asprey said. Mr O'Keeffe, of Marrickville, said Sharkfest was his first major open water swim and he was pleased with his results. ''I thought it might've taken me an hour so I was very happy to come in at 51 minutes,'' he said. The two began training together in February after Mr O'Keeffe realised someone from his area was also competing in Sharkfest. They trained four to five times each week and varied between lap swimming and ocean swimming. Both men hope to train and compete again in the future, with new friend Elizabeth Kegode who they met in the US. Plan for civic centre on agenda THE development application for the $12.3 million Ashfield Civic Centre redevelopment will be con- sidered at the July 22 meeting of Ashfield Council. The application was on public exhibition until June 24 and has been assessed by an independent planning consultant. The proposed redevelopment in- cludes an expanded library, new customer service centre, refur- bished administration offices and a landscaped plaza. The public is invited to attend the meeting which starts at 6.30pm in the Council Chambers, Level 3, Civic Centre, 260 Liverpool Rd. Phone 9716 1800 or visit the Ashfield Council website at www.ashfield.nsw.gov.au Maniac out for revenge on Nick FIVE Dock's own wrestling cham- pion Psykotic Maniac was beaten in his last battle by Big Bad Nick, but he'll be the only one big and bad when they meet again this week to decide who really de- serves the Australian Wrestling Entertainment Title. The ''psykotic elbow'' and all the bone-rattling manoeuvres will be on display when Psykotic and 11 other top Australian pro-wrestlers get together to deliver two hours of action-packed, family entertain- ment at Canterbury-Hurlstone Park RSL at 2pm on Friday, July 20.Tickets cost $20 for adults, $12.50 for children. To book call 9559 0000.
July 9 2008
July 23 2008