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Leanne StallwoodKCCI Dumps Peanut Festival
& Kingaroy Christmas Carnival
March 24, 2009 - The Kingaroy Chamber of Commerce and Industry announced today that for financial reasons it could no longer organise the annual Kingaroy Peanut Festival or Christmas Carnival.

"This potential outcome was discussed with the South Burnett Regional Council CEO (Tony Hayward) and Lifestyle and Culture Director (Eleanor Sharpe). The door is now wide open for community based groups to take the lead in organising the Kingaroy Peanut Festival," KCCI President Leanne Stallwood, (right), said.

Read the full statement on the KCCI website
Two New Town Radio Stations Hit The Airwaves
March 24, 2009 - The South Burnett has two new radio stations with the launch last Friday of Our Country Wondai (88FM) and Our Country Murgon (87.6FM).

Owner Michael Monk said his aim was to make radio more relevant to the local area and each of his new stations would be branded as that town's local station. Coverage will be north to Goomeri, west to Byee and south to Wooroolin.

Michael said KFM (96.3FM) Kingaroy and KFM (87.6FM) Nanango would move to the new Our Country branding within three weeks to be then followed by 88FM Gatton and 87.6FM Laidley.

The Our Country stations are operated from Michael's studio at Wondai, an office in King Street, Kingaroy, and a portable facility in the Lockyer Valley.
UAVs Test Avoidance Strategies Near Kingaroy
March 23, 2009 - Kingaroy Airport will be playing a major role next month in a series of UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) tests being carried out by Boeing Research and Technology Australia and the Australian Research Centre for Aerospace Automation (a joint venture of Queensland University of Technology and CSIRO).

The tests will involve a modified Cessna 172R and the CSIRO's unmanned helicopter which will automatically be kept from colliding by computer-based separation systems.

They follow successful tests with a "virtual" aircraft and the unmanned helicopter near Kingaroy earlier this year. In this earlier test, computers in Seattle successfully averted a virtual "collision". More information, see Insciences.

The tests are part of a project aimed at developing automatic separation systems to help integrate UAVs into busy airspace.

Latest State Election Results:
March 21, 2009 - Latest election results, courtesy of the ABC, indicate little has changed locally in the South Burnett with sitting members ahead in primary votes:

  • Nanango - win to Dorothy Pratt (Independent) on ALP preferences.

  • Callide - easy win to Jeff Seeney (LNP)

Conceding defeat to the ALP in the overall State poll, LNP leader Lawrence Springborg has resigned as party leader.
Make Your Way To Murgon Tomorrow!
March 20, 2009 -The main day of action at the annual Murgon Show will be on tomorrow from 6:30am at the Murgon Showground.

This year's Show features horse and cattle events (including a Bazadaise Stud Cattle Feature), a huge dog show, musical entertainment, ute muster, line dancing and a rodeo from 6:00pm (with fireworks about 8:30pm).

Admission is $12 for adults, $10 for pensioners, $6 for high school students (with ID cards) and $3 for primary school students. More details? Phone the Murgon Show Society on (07) 4168-1427.

And don't forget to vote in the State Election tomorrow!
Tourism Amalgamation Still Being Assessed
March 19, 2009 - Discussions whether to amalgamate the tourism regions of the Southern Downs and Granite Belt with the South Burnett are still progressing, according to a report in yesterday's Warwick Daily News.

Mr Kim Henshaw, from the Southern Downs and Granite Belt Tourist Association (SDGBTA), told the Southern Downs Regional Council on Tuesday that the potential benefits of an amalgamation were being assessed by local tourism authorities and a "game plan" should be known within a month.

"Discussions are underway now and providing nothing radical happens after this Saturday's State Government election, we should have an idea of how we market ourselves in the future soon," Mr Henshaw said.

Mr Henshaw also said the SDGBTA would experiment with a digital advertising campaign this winter as traditional print media marketing campaigns were becoming increasingly expensive and "less relevant" to sectors of the market.

"We know more people are researching and booking holidays through the internet so we are going to launch a predominately digital campaign this year," he said.

Footnote: The "Autumn in the South Burnett" insert, (above), in the new South-East Country Club publication - which arrived late last week - could be a good argument for always checking the internet first before booking any holiday ... dates are wrong for the Nanango Show (should be April 3-4 not April 4-5), Burrandowan Races (should be May 9 not May 10) and the Nanango Races (should be May 23 not May 22).
Is The GFC Affecting Your Business?
March 18, 2009 - The Wide Bay Burnett Area Consultative Committee is seeking any information (factual or anecdotal) about how the global financial crisis is impacting regional Australia.

The WBBACC is preparing a regional response to the Federal House of Representatives' Standing Committee Inquiry which is reporting on the impact of the financial crisis on regional Australia.

Submissions can be sent to Cameron Bisley by email or you phone him on (07) 4121-7099.

More information, including how to make a direct submission to the inquiry, is available on the committee's website.
Do You Know The Names
Of All Your Customers?
March 17, 2009 - Do You Know The Names Of All Your Customers? Well, if the answer is no, then some of your customers are probably visitors to the area. This is the message that a tourism forum being held in Wondai today is hoping to spread.

The Tourism Futures Forum has been organised by the South Burnett Tourism Association in conjunction with the South Burnett Regional Council. It will run from 9:00am to noon at the Wondai Memorial Hall.

The forum invites local businesspeople to have an input into how the South Burnett tourism industry can grow and how the SBTA and SBRC can work with businesses to set the future direction of tourism in the South Burnett.

For more information, phone Lynn Smith on (07) 4171-6803.
Test & Tag It @ TAFE
March 16, 2009 - Kingaroy TAFE has organised a "test and tag" appliance safety testing course which could help South Burnett businesses save money ... and lives.

Electrical teachers David Penny and Kris Holmes will conduct short courses in testing and inspection of electrical equipment, beginning next month.

"The course is suited to those working in organisations that may be required to carry out in-service testing of their own electrical equipment to meet Occupational Health and Safety requirements," Mr Penny said.

Entry is limited to employees and employers who are required to carry out testing and inspecting of electrical equipment in a workplace. Cost is $300 (GST exempt). Courses will be held from 8:00am to 6:00pm on April 8, August 12 and September 16.

For more information contact SQIT on (07) 4160-4400.
Wine & Food in the
Park On Tomorrow
March 13, 2009 - The South Burnett's best-known wine and food event, Wine & Food in the Park is on tomorrow from 10:00am in Kingaroy's Memorial Park.

The wine marquee is a massive 54m long and will house a dine-in restaurant as well as wine-tasting (and selling!) stalls.

PCA is again sponsoring a South Burnett cook-off with displays by well-known Brisbane chef David Pugh (Restaurant Two) and foodie Peter Howard as well as local chefs Jason Ford (TAFE) and Brent Shorter (Kingaroy Hotel Motel).

On stage, there'll be live entertainment from Doc Span, Paul Greene, The Blues Excuse, The Rain, Josh Arnold, Too Ezy and the Kingaroy SHS Stage Band.

Entry is just $10 (under 18s free) and there is strictly no BYO.
Vote 1 for South Burnett Icons
March 12, 2009 - Do you think the Goomeri Pumpkion Festival is a true Queensland icon? Then vote!! Not at the State Election next week, but on the Q150 website.

Voting has opened to determine what's a Queensland icon (and what's not) for Queensland's 150th anniversary celebrations. Voters have until April 30 to choose from a shortlist of 300 finalists across 10 categories.

South Burnett finalists are:
  • Goomeri Pumpkin Festival (Events & Festivals category),
  • Bunya Mountains (Natural Attractions),
  • Eddie Gilbert (Sports Legends),
  • Matthew Hayden (Sports Legends).
  • Joh Bjelke-Petersen (State Shapers), and
  • the Bunya Tree (Typically Queensland).

They're all up against tough competition, so start voting!
SBS Seeking Indigenous Talent
March 11, 2009 - Indigenous residents of the South Burnett involved in the media or film have been invited to apply for a TV Mentorship Award from SBS television.

The SBS Indigenous TV Mentorship Award will offer support, guidance and opportunities to emerging Indigenous talent in the Australian film and television industry. The winner will receive sponsorship to travel to local and international festivals, conferences or markets, mentorship and legal advice.

All entrants must have at least one credit on a completed production shown in film festivals or on community or national Australian television or be in the first two years of their principal role (for example as director or producer).

Applications must be received by email at or received by mail at SBS Indigenous TV Mentorship Award, Strategy & Communications, SBS, Locked Bag 028, Crows Nest, NSW, 1585 by March 27.

For further details, including selection criteria, terms and conditions, visit the SBS website.
Joint Partners To Fund Deeper Drilling At Booubyjan
March 10, 2009 - Mining company ActivEX Ltd has drawn up a new work program for 2009 for it Booubyjan Joint Venture.

In its quarterly report released to the Australian Stock Exchange on January 30, ActivEX said the work would focus principally on drill testing at significantly greater depths than previously attempted and had been costed at $650,000. This would be fully funded by Mitsubishi Corporation and Mitsubishi Materials Corporation.

ActivEX's joint venture is testing a variety of anomalous copper and gold targets in the Booubyjan area.
Calling All Local Apexians!
March 9, 2009 - Kingaroy Apex president Jodie Butcher is trying to track down all former members of the Kumbia and Kingaroy Apex Clubs for a grand reunion to be held next month at the Kumbia Hotel.

The idea for the get-together occurred after Jodie noticed the old Kumbia Apex Club Honour Board hanging in the hallway at the Kumbia pub.

The reunion will be held on Saturday April 18 from 6:30pm. Accommodation and camping is available at the hotel.

"I have been able to track down the names on the Honour Board but I want to invite anyone who was a member or a wife/partner of a member who may no longer be with us, to come along," Jodie said. "We just want to try and reach as many people as we can."

Bookings are essential for catering purposes. Phone Jodie on (07) 4164-4167 or send her an email

Andrew and Sue Wolski at the Kumbia Hotel have a special link to Apex. Andrew was a member of the previous Kingaroy club and Sue's father is Ray "Sug" Robson who was also a well-known member.
New Website For Speedway
March 6, 2009 - The South Burnett Speedway Club may not currently have a racetrack but they do have a new website.

The club is not racing at the Kingaroy Showgrounds this season due to safety concerns about the fence but members have been competing at a number of other venues including Maryborough and Gympie.

Negotiations about the club's local venue have been taking place with the South Burnett Regional Council and other organisations and an announcement is expected soon.

NB. The KCCI has advised that the free "Surviving Tough Times" seminar, organised by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland, which was to be held in Kingaroy on March 17 has been cancelled due to lack of interest. Recession, what recession?
Shoppingworld Celebrates Its Winners
March 5, 2009 - Congratulations to the recent winners at the Shoppingworld Business Awards:

  • Food Excellence Award Cellarbrations
  • Mixed Fashion Excellence Award - Millers Fashion Club
  • Health, Beauty & Fashion Accessories Award - Bou's For Men
  • Services Excellence Award - Heritage Building Society
  • Giftware, Variety & Technology Award - Network Communications
  • Major's Top Performer Excellence Award Best & Less
  • Specialty Chain Excellence Award - Donut King
  • Independent Retailer Excellence Award - Volume II
  • Marketing Excellence Award - Wendy's
  • Special Acknowledgment Award - Donut King
  • Encouragement Award - Eagleboys
  • Retailer Of The Year Award - Thorps Showcase Jewellers
Cougar Can Now Move To Next Stage
March 4, 2009 - Cougar Energy plans to start the Pilot Burn stage of its possible 400MW power station project near Kingaroy later this year following the announcement this week that the State Government had granted its application for Mineral Development Licence (MDL).

Cougar says the granting of MDL 385 confirms the Government's recently announced policy of supporting the progressive development of Cougar's Kingaroy underground coal gasification (UCG) project.

The move also allows Cougar to complete the agreed purchase from Cockatoo Coal Ltd of its remaining interest in the UCG Designated Area at Kingaroy.

"Cougar's past drilling programs have confirmed a ... resource of 73 million tonnes of coal suitable for the UCG process, which is sufficient to fuel a 400MW combined cycle power plant for at least 30 years," Cougar's Managing Director Dr Len Walker said.

Our Visitor Information Centres
Are The Best in Queensland!
March 3, 2009 - The Wondai and Kingaroy Visitor Information Centres have both won trophies in the 2009 Queensland Visitor Information Centre Of The Year competition.

The Wondai VIC competed in the "one paid staff and volunteers" section against Warwick, Dalby, Boonah and Beaudesert. Kingaroy VIC competed in the "more than 3 paid staff and volunteers" section against Blackall, Cairns and Gladstone.

The wins were announced on Sunday night at the Queensland Information Centres Association Conference held in Stanthorpe.

ABOVE RIGHT: Kingaroy Visitor Information Team Leader Jayne Deshon with volunteer Gwen Woodall
Electricity Council To Meet In Maryborough
March 2, 2009 - The Wide Bay-Burnett Regional Electricity Council will be meeting in Maryborough on Thursday to consider supply and distribution issues raised by local residents.

Wide Bay-Burnett REC chairman Craig Hodges said issues likely to be discussed include proposed changes to the local network, environmental issues and vegetation management, customer relations, major infrastructure projects, impact on local communities, the reliability of supply and network maintenance.

"All community interests, including business, industry, local government, town and country are welcome to put their views to the Council," he said.

The Council provides advice and community feedback to the Mines and Energy Minister, to the Office of the Energy Ombudsman and to Ergon Energy on electricity distribution and retailing within the region.
Local Electrician Goes Green
February 27, 2009 - Two businesses listed this week on SBBiz will be familiar to South Burnett readers but are back with a difference ...

Licensed electrician Greg Taffe has launched Go Green Generation. The contract solar electric installer also offers energy-efficient home re-wiring and home products and will do home and business energy audits. Greg can be contacted on 0458-937-439 or by email

His wife Kelly is also planning to re-open her business, Kelee's Makeup Artistry Waxing and Beauty, at Shop 2, 32 King Street. Kelly told SBBiz she hoped to have the doors open in May. Kelee's Makeup specialises in all waxing and beauty needs including wedding, formal and special occasion make-up. She can be contacted on 0412-779-122.