COULD we soon see the iconic image of Andrew Johns holding aloft the Newcastle Knights' 2001 NRL Premiership immortalised in a bronzed statue outside McDonald Jones Stadium? Well, it's become more likely.
Last month Topics brought you news about the campaign for the Joey statue and the GoFundMe page aiming to raise $50,000 to fund the project.
Paul Doorn, the chief executive officer of Venues NSW, has since written to the Andrew Johns Statue Supporters Group organisers, Newcastle solicitor Karlo Tychsen and businessman Andrew Hughes, acknowledging a Johns statue would be "an inspiration to many."
Mr Doorn wrote that the statue would be considered as Venues NSW continues its concept planning for the transformation of Hunter Sports and Entertainment Precinct.
Mr Tychsen, a "day one" Knights fan welcomed the response from Venues NSW and hopes it'll be the first step in a greater celebration of Newcastle's sporting legends at the stadium.
The Andrew Johns Statue Supporters Group has had 1473 likes on Facebook and 1150 signatures on their petition in seven weeks.
The group will ramp up its campaign on Saturday when McDonald Jones Stadium hosts the Legends Of League, by handing out pamphlets and erecting a banner.
While Johns' rugby league brilliance is without question, plenty of critics would argue his drug and alcohol scandals off the field should prevent him from being immortalised in a statue.
"All of our heroes whether they be sporting, or actors, political crusaders, they're people at the end of the day," Mr Tychsen said in response. "They're three-dimensional human beings.
"Andrew Johns was no different. He had his failings. I think what separated Andrew from a lot of other fallen heroes is that he owed up to them.
"I don't think anything off the field detracts from just how great he was on it."
KISS OFF PREDICTED
Naturally it created an outpouring of disappointment on Thursday when news broke that KISS would be cancelling their Newcastle Supercars show next Saturday, and their entire Australian farewell tour, due to Paul Stanley suffering from influenza and a throat infection.
Should we be shocked? Newcastle Herald columnist Deborah Richards wasn't.
More than a year ago "Nostradamus Richo" predicted that KISS' pledge to "rock and roll all nite and party every day" might take its toll on the sexagenarians.
"It's called the End of The Road Tour," Richards wrote. "I just hope it doesn't end before it starts. We are all getting older.
"But these blokes haven't exactly been sitting in an office for decades."
I'm scared to ask for Deb's thoughts on Elton John's forthcoming farewell shows at Hope Estate on January 11 and 12.
SPIN OUT ON WEATHER APP
Sure, we've experienced some crazy weather in the Hunter this week, but a tornado?
On Tuesday night just as the cool change was blowing in from the south we turned to our Weather Channel app on our iPhone. Apparently Newcastle was experiencing the full force of a twister.
Anyone with an iPhone knows the app is no Gavin Morris when predicting weather, and before Topics could run to the storm cellar the tornado threat had disappeared.
It turns out the Newcastle tornado wasn't an isolated incident. The Atlanta-based The Weather Channel has predicted tornadoes for Speers Point, Canberra and Newtown in recent weeks.
One week Phil Jamieson is performing in front of thousands with Grinspoon at the Newcastle Entertainment Centre, the next the charismatic singer is just like any other punter.
Jamieson was spotted at Wickham Park's Scene & Heard Festival last Sunday checking out Eskimo Joe. Jamieson made no attempt to look inconspicuous, wearing a beige suit, black fingernails, (no red wine), and sun glasses.
We also spotted former Triple J host, comedian and TV presenter Adam Spencer waltzing around the nostalgic music festival.