Mary Valley Rattler Christmas -wreath only

All aboard the Mary Valley Rattler Christmas Train

The Mary Valley Rattler will celebrate its first Christmas since regular services resumed with a special Twilight Christmas Train journey, along with the opportunity to take your own photos with Santa Claus every Sunday in December in the lead up to Christmas.

The inaugural Mary Valley Rattler Twilight Christmas Train will depart historic Gympie Station on Tozer Street on Friday 14th December at 5.30pm, on an extended return trip to Amamoor Station.

Mary Valley Rattler Chairman Ian McNicol said the Rattler’s Twilight Christmas Train is a rare opportunity to take in the sights and sounds of the scenic Mary Valley at night.

Christmas Boat Parade

Mooloolaba Christmas Boat Parade to light up December!

A flotilla of local boats will light up The Mooloolah River with the spirit of the season again this year for the 15th annual Mooloolaba Christmas Boat Parade, organised by Mooloolaba Yacht Club.

MYC Vice Commodore Josh Close said the Parade, starting at 6.30pm on Saturday 22nd December, will be the biggest and best yet with a record level of entries expected not only from boat owners but homeowners along the Parade route too.

Silver Bullet at Gympie Station - photo by Leeroy Todd (38 of 75)web

Come join Retro Fridays at the Mary Valley Rattler

By popular demand, iconic tourist attraction the Mary Valley Rattler announced today it will start Retro Fridays, a fun filled journey every Friday morning aboard the gleaming 1960’s Silver Bullet railmotor with complimentary breakfast or lunch.

As part of a trial, every Friday 10am, the beautifully restored Silver Bullet diesel railmotor will travel a portion of the Mary Valley heritage rail corridor on a return trip to nearby Monkland, a suburb on the north-east bank of the Mary River home to the Gympie Gold Mining and Historical Museum.

With a meal included in the ticket price, passengers will also enjoy either a delicious breakfast or lunch from Platform No. 1 Café prior to or after travelling.

At 30 minutes for a roundtrip, Mary Valley Rattler Chairman Ian McNicol said Retro Fridays are an ideal way to sample just some of the magic of heritage rail travel the Mary Valley Rattler is known for.

MVR Chairman Ian McNicol blowing the whistle to signal new start

Historic Mary Valley Rattler First Run Day this Saturday

The historic Gympie Railway Station will be the place to be this Saturday, as the Mary Valley Rattler celebrates its First Run Day with a very special inaugural return trip to Amamoor via Dagun on the historic railway, alongside a fun-filled day of activities and entertainment.

Doors open to the free event at the station on Tozer Street at 8am for what promises to be an unforgettable start to the iconic railway’s welcome return to regular services.

Tickets for Saturday’s First Run Day are close to selling out so if you want to be on the historic first train, buy your tickets now. While you are at the station enjoying the festivities, you can also book future trips or jump online and book at maryvalleyrattler.com.au.

Highlights of the packed day-long program include musical performances from X-Factor contestant Caitlyn Shadbolt to a classical harpist, a live broadcast and giveaways from local radio station Zinc FM and a slew of children’s entertainers.

Mary Valley Rattler C17 974 engine and heritage carriages heading back toward Gympie-web

Excitement as Mary Valley Rattler Launch Date Announced

It’s full steam ahead for the Mary Valley Rattler, with the iconic tourist attraction hosting a day of festivities for First Run Day early next month after the announcement today of the start date for the historic railway’s regular services.

To celebrate, the beautifully refurbished historic Gympie Station on Tozer Street will come alive with a carnival-like atmosphere from 8am on Saturday 6th October, 2018.

Along with live entertainment from The X Factor Australia contestant and local, Caitlyn Shadbolt, a broadcast from local radio station Zinc FM, face painting, and station tours.

There will also be exclusive opportunities to be the first to ride the trains – these exclusive First Run Day tickets are $100 for adults and $50 for children and include a return ride on the train on Saturday 6th October as well as a welcome drink, a gift bag for each passenger and a First Run Day certificate.

Mary Valley Rattler Mates Ambassadors - John and Margaret Cochrane-web

Gympie locals invited to become a Mate of the Mary Valley Rattler

With the Mary Valley Rattler soon to be back on track, the not for profit community organisation behind the prominent tourism attraction is offering Gympie residents the chance to be part of an exciting new membership program.

Rattler Mates membership is available exclusively to Gympie Regional Council residents and rate-payers and provides card holders with one complimentary train ride, a 50% discount off subsequent single fares and a range of other discounts valid until June 30 2019.

Mary Valley Rattler Chairman Ian McNicol said Rattler Mates would give members the opportunity to experience the timeless character of the Rattler’s magnificent heritage trains and a chance to share in the region’s history.

“We hope Rattler Mates will give members a sense of ownership of the Rattler,” Mr McNicol said.

“Our train tours offer a great rail journey through the Mary Valley, with spectacular scenery, that changes not only with the seasons, but with the time of day as well.”

Mary Valley Rattler C17 974 and heritage carriages at Amamoor Station from the air-web

First Mary Valley Rattler steam train run to Amamoor

The Mary Valley Rattler is even closer to being operational with the successful first run of the C17 974 steam engine and heritage carriages on the Mary Valley Rattler line, as part of continuing volunteer driver and safety training on the weekend.

The journeys are the next vital step in final preparations for relaunching the Mary Valley Rattler, according to Mary Valley Rattler general manager Lisa Raklander.

“This was the first time the steam engine has operated to Amamoor since September 2012 when operations were suspended until vital track upgrades could be made.

“There was lots of excitement on both Saturday and Sunday at Gympie, Dagun and Amamoor Stations as well as along the route, but this was also an important stage for us in terms of our driver and safety training.

“We are now closer than ever to the Mary Valley Rattler tours resuming which will be an important tourism boon for the region, with the tours previously attracting more than 33,000 guests a year.

Ms Raklander said driver and safety training would now continue for the next few weeks.

“We continue to urge caution around the tracks and encourage parents to use the opportunity to teach children about rail safety as for some this is the first time they have seen trains on the Mary Valley line.

“We will be ready to make an announcement about when we will launch soon.”

MVR safety coordinator Julis Avis speaking to Dagun State School students

Mary Valley Rattler takes safety message to schools by train

The “Safety Train” will this week travel along the Mary Valley Rattler track to local schools in an effort to spread the TrackSAFE message.

Mary Valley Rattler safety and training coordinator Julia Avis said the visit, on Thursday 16 August, is not only to illustrate the importance of rail safety, but also a unique opportunity for students to see one of the Mary Valley Rattler’s fleet of diesel engines in action.

“Children always love to see trains and the meticulously restored carriages in the Rattler fleet,” Ms Avis said.

Wharf Tower to Chances & Marina wide shot_2_Feb_2018-40

Five exciting new businesses to call The Wharf Mooloolaba home

The second stage of The Wharf Mooloolaba’s $10million refurbishment is well underway with five new ventures to open in the precinct between now and mid-July.

The new food, retail and activity businesses launching are further evidence the precinct is once again gaining a reputation as the place to be in Mooloolaba.

Wharf Mooloolaba co-owner Dirk Long said the new businesses included The Booking Box – an activity booking and information centre, Meraki Thread Co – a new fashion boutique specialising in vintage and up-cycled clothing, Boston Shaker -a new cocktail bar with a jazz vibe, La Finca -a new café from the owners of Colombian Coffee, and Fior di Latte Gelateria – a great new gelato bar from the owners of Pitchfork Restaurant at Peregian.

“With the Booking Box and Meraki Thread Co open this week and three more openings coming up, it’s very exciting times at The Wharf.”

Dan Hart Sunreef Whale One

Sunreef Mooloolaba expanding whale tourism venture to include Whale One

South East Queensland’s premiere scuba diving and Australia’s first Swim with Humpback Whales experience operator, Sunreef Mooloolaba, is expanding their immersive ocean experiences, adding whale watching to its portfolio, having purchased Whale One.

The expansion, which adds to Sunreef’s purchase of adventure hire company Hire Hut at the beginning of the year, means there is no better place to go for aquatic adventure.

“We love the Sunshine Coast and believe strongly in the tourism and hospitality sector here and are proud to have the successful Whale One operations now powered by Sunreef Mooloolaba,” Sunreef owner Dan Hart said.

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