Love in the Vines – Better Marriages Australia Conference

Better Marriages Australia, NSW, is excited to announce details of our 2018 Better Marriages Australia Conference.

A photo of a table in the restaurant set with meal with a view of the vines of Highland estate Winery in the background

View from the restaurant over Highland Estate Vineyard

We invite you and your spouse to join us for a Weekend away in Orange.

Our theme for 2018 is Love in the Vines: Celebrating a Marriage worth bottling.


The conference will be held at the Highland Heritage Estate Winery, in Orange NSW on 8 September 2018.



Keynote Speaker

Head and Shoulders photo of Jenny Brown Founder of Family Systems Institute

Jenny Brown Founder of Family Systems Institute

Our Keynote Speaker will be Jenny Brown, Founder, and Director of The Family Systems Institute Australia, and Author of ‘Growing Yourself Up’. 

Jenny will present a Keynote Presentation ‘Growing through the Seasons’ (life cycle adjustments) and a Keynote Workshop ‘Nurturing the Vine’ (fun, romance, and sex).

There will also be six concurrent afternoon workshops from which you can choose, a conference dinner and an after dinner Keynote presentation.   

Full program details are provided below.

Saturday’s conference day will run from 9 am to 9 pm, leaving the Sunday free to go out and enjoy the vines in Orange, communicating what you want to apply to your marriage from that day forward.

How much will it cost to attend?

The conference cost will be $230 per couple, $200 for member couples (accommodation not included).

How do I register to attend?

You can register right here on this page using the form provided.  Just enter your first and last name and that of your spouse along with an email and phone contact in the spaces provided and then click the RSVP button.

Your registration details will be sent to our treasurer couple who will reply to your email providing a link to the page on this site where you can pay your couple registration costs by either Credit/Debit Card or by using your PayPal account.  

They will also request your afternoon concurrent workshop preferences which you can provide by return email to the treasurer couple.

We have a limit of 50 couples for the conference so register soon to secure your place.

Members Discount

Better Marriages Australia members receive a $30 discount off the cost of the conference registration compared to couples who are not Better Marriages Australia members.  If you are not yet Better Marriages Australia, members, then for just $30 a year you and your partner can receive a discount on all biannual conferences and annual workshops you attend while members, as well as other membership benefits, including access to additional couple resources through this website.

Visit the Membership section of this site to find out more advantages of becoming a Better Marriages Australia member couple and, if you wish, to pay your membership fee online through this site before registering for the conference.


Weekends are popular in Orange so book one of the many accommodation options as soon as you register.  You can either use the online accommodation booking provider of your choice or, if you prefer, check out the Orange Visitor Centre.

Conference Program

A full program for the day is provided below including more details of the Keynotes and all concurrent workshops.  You can also download your own PDF copy of our Conference Flyer which also includes the full program.

8:45 – 9:15 am   Registration

9:15 – 9:30 am Welcome and introductions

9.30 – 11 am         Keynote Presentation: Jenny Brown

Founder and Director of The Family Systems Institute Australia and Author of ‘Growing Yourself Up’.

‘Growing through the Seasons’  (life cycle adjustments)

Exploring the unique opportunities for growth in intimacy at each stage of the lifecycle. This will include ways to navigate the predictable challenges of the changing seasons of family life, from the honeymoon to old age.

11 – 11:30 am       Morning Tea

11:30 – 1 pm         Keynote Workshop: Jenny Brown

‘Nurturing the Vine’ (fun, romance and sex)

A workshop to consider some surprising ingredients to a passionate Marriage and how the fruits of fun, romance, and satisfying sex can be nurtured even through the pressured phases of life.

1 – 2 pm                Lunch

2 – 2:30 pm         Interview with Panel Couples

2:30 – 3 pm         Couple Dialogue

3 – 5 pm                Afternoon Workshop options: (coffee/tea available all afternoon

Connecting through Crisis and Stressful Times

Ways of maintaining a connection in life-affirming ways, through the stresses and crises of life.

Barry & Paula Davis


Smoothing out the rough spots in Your Blend

The unique differences we bring to our relationship can result in conflict.

Explore how we can manage that conflict in a way that makes it a source of relationship growth and deeper understanding of our partner, rather than creating distance between us.

Glenda & Simon Devlin


Growing Strong Vines. Identifying and Affirming the Strengths in our Relationship

Explore the skills and insights that help us grow our marriage, with particular emphasis on how to identify and affirm strengths, in each other and our relationship.

Paul & Noeline Drayton


Unpacking the Communication Tool-box

Fertilise your marriage by learning new patterns of communicating with each other. Practise ways of gaining deeper emotional connection through truly hearing each other. Discover your emotional allergies so you can be a team in helping each other to heal and grow.

Heather & John McAlpine



It’s true – always doing things the same way, inevitably yields the same results. Learn new strategies to help change and protect your marriage, by being intentional.

Anne & Rob Willis


Sex in the vines

‘Your love is better than wine’ Song of Songs 1:2

Are you a resident in your love life or a tourist? Let’s explore sex as a profound way of giving your entire self to your spouse.

Sanaa & Sam Labib

5:05 – 5:45 pm     AGM with canapés

5:45                       Wine Tasting

7 – 9 pm                Candlelight Dinner and Keynote:

“Things we are certain of’”

Exploring the spoken and unspoken values that underlie our relationship.

Paula and Barry Davis


Sunday                 Go out and enjoy the Orange vines.

Communicating what you want to apply to your marriage from this day forward.