A round-up of what’s happening in the region
Go Purple raffle for epilepsy
EPILEPSY sufferer Levi Roth drew the winners of Gayndah Guardian Pharmacy’s Go Purple raffle in aid of Epilepsy Queensland last week.
MargaretWatson won first prize, a purple pamper pack donated by Guardian Pharmacy.
She told the pharmacy it was a pleasant surprise as she had not won anything before.
HelenWalker won purple nails donated by Leah’s Essential Beauty, and Sylvia Spink won purple towels donated by Mona Neylon ofWayne’s World.
Gayndah Guardian Pharmacy owner Samantha Rowles said $1085.30 had been banked for Epilepsy Queensland, comprising $386.50 from the raffle and the balance from merchandise sales and other donations.
“We would like to thank everyone for their support of purple day this year,” Mrs Rowles said.
“For a small community we have a lot of people living in it with big purple hearts.
“We get involved because we see the struggles that families living with epilepsy face every day.
“Levi is our little local hero living with epilepsy and he is not alone.
“He deals with a lot every day and if one day a year we can focus on his struggles then all the effort is so worth it.”
This year, Levi’s special treats included a ride in Ken Eisel’s purple muscle car.
WINNING the Mundubbera section of Central and North Burnett Times Scratch-It comp was a great surprise for John and Jenny Neild.
Mr Neild said they had forgotten that they had entered the competition.
But when the text came through announcing their lucky win, they thought all their Christmases had come at once.
“I think we only entered the CNBT Scratch-It competition with one ticket and that’s all it took,” Mr Neild said.
“We are so thankful to Tim and his good wife at Mundubbera Meats for looking after us and giving us the opportunity to have a go.”
The Neilds are on an extended working holiday around Australia from South Australia and are working at Central Fruit Packers as quality control officers.
This is the second year that the Central and North Burnett Times has run the Scratch-It comp in the North Burnett and the prize of $250 worth of scratch-its could be very worthwhile, especially if the Neilds’ dream comes true.
Mundubbera Meats proprietor Tim Duggan said giving away the winning ticket was very rewarding.
“My wife and I celebrate with the winners and we hope that their fortune is among their tickets.”
The Central and North Burnett Times ran the competition in Monto in February, Mundubbera in March and in Gayndah in May (with the winner yet to be confirmed).
Seven businesses were involved in Monto: Duck Inn Store, Monto Meats, Heilbron’s Mensland, Monto IGA, Monto Foodworks, Monto News
and Monto Leading Appliances.
Five businesses were involved in Mundubbera: Mundubbera Parts & Tools, Mundubbera Butchering Co, Gavin Ford Mobiles, Mundubbera Home Timber & Hardware, Mundubbera News & Office Smart.
The idea behind the competition is to support local business in the first quarter of the year when things are a little slow.
Mr Neild said he was thankful to the newspaper for giving them a chance to win a big prize.
Meet your occupational therapist
A BROAD smile and a helping hand characterise Kirsty Stewart, the North Burnett’s senior occupational therapist.
“Occupational therapy is about maximising people’s functions so they can be independent,” Ms Stewart said.
“So, whether that’s going back home after having a hip replacement through to helping a child develop their skills so they can be ready for school.”
The senior occupational therapist joinedWide Bay’s community health team based in Gayndah three weeks ago, and will service clinics in Gin Gin, Monto, Gayndah and Mt Perry.
With her colleague, she will assist with home modifications to assist people to return home after an accident or stroke.
Ms Stewart has come to the North Burnett to be closer to family, after seven years in WaggaWagga, NSW.
“I love country living – the friendliness of towns and their openness,” Ms Stewart said.
“From a therapy viewpoint, people are fairly independent and problem-solving themselves as opposed to waiting for everyone to do things for them.
“They tend to be more understanding around the limitations around delivering health care.”
Ms Stewart’s companions – 10-year-old cockatiel Charlie and her bitzer Lucy – join her in the North Burnett, where she will be working on her crochet projects for possible entry in local shows.
Ms Stewart, who has played with the Riverina Conservatorium of Music’s orchestra for seven years, was also keen to meet other local musicians.
SHAUN Hyde – graffiti artist, screen printer and florist – reveals his multiple talents in Disposition, an exhibition running at Gayndah Art Gallery until April 26.
“When I was growing up, a lot of mates were into graffiti,” Shaun said.
“I went into portraits and words and continued on from there.
“Since Campbell Newman came in with anti-graffiti laws, he took it off the streets and train lines – and on to canvases.”
Looking back on his varied career, Shaun said he was glad to have heeded the judge who told him to do canvases or “go on a holiday”.
“I use paint materials for free from the dump (and) paint shops, and even more so, I don’t like buying canvases,” he said.
The work entitled Where’s your mum was painted over a second hand canvas, with its former texture showing through.
Following the ethos of a free art society – using art to transform community – Shaun has worked with youth and councils creating murals, such as the one at Ferny Grove skate park, and run a screen printing course for about seven years.
He’s even completed a Certificate III in floristry, a form he described as “really rigid”, but which was now being transformed by a “more natural, garden-like” approach focusing on loosely put together big bunches of flowers.
Although sceptical at first, he has since enrolled in a visual arts diploma at South Bank TAFE with the goal of transferring to a visual arts degree at the Queensland College of Art.
“You go out there and do it; get some certification behind you, (I was told),” he said.
“It’s been good for networking, the tutors, access to galleries and an offer to go to New York.”
Works in the exhibition included award-winning graffiti designs on skateboards, as well as a favourite canvas of a flower-covered skull.
“It’s messy, it’s dirty, I like flowers,” said Shaun of the piece his 78-year-old neighbour initially disliked.
She changed her mind, he said, when he added the little flower in the eye.
Picture book released
AINSLEY Shepherd’s picture book, Slow down, Sarah! was inspired by her experiences of riding a 50cc motorbike about age six.
“The neighbours would tell mum and dad I’m a hell-raiser,” Mrs Shepherd said.
“When I did the (Child Writes) course to write it, the lady who I did it through was concerned that editors wouldn’t go for it because of the motorbike factor.
“She almost couldn’t believe that country kids rode motorbikes.”
The 30-year-old red bike, on which her own children learned to ride, will soon be passed on to her niece.
Slow down, Sarah! carried the message of “be strong, be special and be yourself”, Mrs Shepherd said.
“What was once seen by others as a frustration actually becomes her strength, and in the end everyone around her recognises it.”
The biggest surprise for the author was the poetry.
“I started writing it and it came out in rhyme (but) don’t call me a poet,” she said.
“It’s surprising how much editing there was – reviews of editing and punctuation, the rhyme and the beat.
“In a picture book there are less words and each word needs to be chosen really, really carefully to convey more.”
Once the words were written, Mrs Shepherd chose illustrator Chantal Stewart after reading many picture books.
“I was trying to find the illustrator who would match Sarah in my head – she had to be humorous,” she said.
“I knew I had found her when I saw (Nette Hilton’s) Star of the Circus cover.”
Slow down, Sarah! retails for $14.95 through Gayndah State School, Gayndah Post Office and www.slowdownsarah.com.
Five dollars from books purchased through the school will be donated to the P&C committee.
WINNER: Tim Duggan was hoping that one of the many tickets that John Neild won would make his fortune.
LOCAL HERO: From left, Jaimie Roth, St Joseph’s School deputy principal Michelle McClafferty, EpiApe and Shelby Rowles with Levi Roth (centre) ‘go purple’ to raise awareness for epilepsy.
AUTHOR: Gayndah author Ainsley Shepherd reads her picture book, Slow down, Sarah! to Gayndah State School’s Year 5/6 class.
KIRSTY STEWART: Senior occupational therapist Kirsty Stewart has joined the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service’s community health team.