Goondiwindi Regional Report

This week’s Goondiwindi Regional Report brought to you by Chesterfield Australia, John Deere.

High student numbers in tertiary education

We all know they’re a bunch of smarties at the Goondiwindi State High School. And this year, the school has continued along the 2014 national trend, in which, a record number of student enrolments for higher education, has been recorded.

Education Minister Christopher Pyne recently announced a record rise in grade 12 high school students seeking out tertiary education.

It’s a trend that is not unusual for Gundy state high school.

Principal Brett Hallet says tertiary education is something Gundy kids strive for.

“A lot of their motivation comes back to the fact that they want a job, where they can contribute back into the community, particularly in the rural sector because that’s where they’re from,” says Brett.

“Not necessarily Goondiwindi, but if you talk to the students, they want to be able to go away, spend their 4 years getting a degree and come back and contribute,” he says.

Brett says it’s really a matter of acknowledging peoples strengths and then trying to make sure that the school works with the students and their parents to help them go in the right direction.

Apex Eisteddfod reaches record turnout

There certainly was plenty of speech, drama, dance and music showcased at the Apex Eisteddfod with its record turnout of over 1200 performers.

Running over 5 days the Eisteddfod attracted students from as far east as the Gold Coast through to St George, Dalby and NSW.

Secretary Judy Dunlop talks about her favourite part of the Eisteddfod.

“A favourite of mine is always Thursday when we have our school choirs,” says Judy.

“This year for the first time every the St Mary’s choirs won the Apex shield which is the biggest award.

“The adjudicators comments was that with both choirs they were very consistent in their scoring, in their singing, in their presentation and they had a great accompanist which counts a lot,” Judy says.

Judy says planning for the Eisteddfod is something she does all year around, and has already started on next years. She hopes the event will continue to grow in popularity and continue on with its long held tradition in throughout our region.

Talwood plans for its biggest race meet yet

Talwood’s most exciting annual event is fast approaching with the Picnic Races taking place August 22nd, attracting people from all around Queensland.

Talwood expects about 500 attendees at this year’s race, which is no small feat considering the Talwood race club was forced to run the races themselves for a number of years without government support. The race club prides themselves on being one of the largest in the area, whose dedicated members all pitch in to keep the beloved tradition going strong.

“Most race clubs have got five, maybe ten people, and there’s 35 or 40 on ours,” says  Michael Pegler, Vice President of the Talwood Races.

“You don’t get them all at the working bee all the time, but on race day most of them are standing up behind the bar serving the grog, and P&C normally do the catering, I think Rotary is doing it this year, plenty of people always pitching in to give a hand,” he says.

The club has been mowing, redoing the barriers and tidying up in preparation for the crowds, which draw in regulars, newcomers, and even some international travellers who stop in on their tour of Australia. But as each year brings changes and new faces, the Talwood race club strives to keep up the traditional race atmosphere for everyone who comes out.

“There’s still enough people who have been here forever who knew what it was like back when we were growing up and try really hard to make it the same. It used to be you could always come into town and have a good time with someone, or just meeting people, without having to drive to Brisbane to do it, or Goondiwindi to do it,” says Michael.

The Picnic Races will take place Saturday, August 22nd at the Talwood race track, and is sure to be the best one yet.

Border Rivers Chamber of Commerce has its AGM

As the Border Rivers Chamber of Commerce AGM approaches, every Goondiwindi local is encouraged to get involved. This year’s meeting is being held at the Goondowindi training and technology centre on Russell Street, and joining the chamber has more benefits that you might think.

“We’re more about focusing on the needs of our business community and our entire community, and working to meet the needs of them and to help grow our region,” says Brook Saxby from the Chamber of Commerce.

“It’s really great being involved because we’re not for profit, we’re here for the community and the more people that are a part of our chamber and the stronger we are, the stronger our community is,” she says.

Of the many benefits of joining the chamber, members get access to the Goondi gift card that keeps their money local and supports Goondiwindi businesses.

The chamber email service also grants members first access to information about government grants and tenders in the area, and tourism and hospitality operators can promote their businesses at the Goondiwindi information centre.

Check out this year’s AGM and take advantage of all the Border River Chamber of Commerce has to offer.

Regional Queensland takes to the big smoke

It’s something the Goondiwindi show society works towards all year. The Royal Queensland exhibition, and it’s on once again. Bringing visitors from all across Queensland and Australia to heart of Brisbane. And, Jess Demichelis was there to check out all of the action.

The 2015 exhibition has brought with it a variety of talent, culture, produce, fun and entertainment. It’s the 138th time the city and the country have been united – and this year, our regions need the support more than ever. o

With 80% of Queensland now drought declared its here at the show, that farmers can let their hair down.

This week Brisbaneites are championing the fact that in our backyard, our farmers are producing the world’s best, year in and year out. And it’s at pavilions like these, that city folk can rally behind our famers, and recognise that everything starts with agriculture.

From vegetable growing to show jumping to prime beef sales, there have already been plenty of victories around the showgrounds. So if you’re bringing home a prize to Goondiwindi, let plus more show it off. Give us a ring and show us your sash!