Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Childers en route to Bundaberg
Have headed off again to deliver a professional development program for work. While heading to Bundaberg, we actually broke the journey in Childers. It is interesting that a lot of the regional towns are now bypassed by the main freeway. There are pros and cons to taking this action - major impact of no through traffic would have to be the loss of life of the town centre. It must cause issues for these regional communities. Childers seem to have the mix right. The freeway goes right through the main street, with a side road access for those wanting to stop off, park and engage with the community. That is if you know it is there. For those of us who don't, we just deviate off the highway and reverse into a park, hoping not to upset too many fellow travelers. Oops.
Childers is well worth a visit. I was amazed by the welcome from locals. Not just the hello in the street, but also the referrals to other points of interest. We stopped at one point of interest, got referred to another, stopped there, got a referral etc. Incredible insight into the value of the word of mouth. The Childers Backpackers Memorial is well worth a visit. A simple, yet emotive remembrance for those young visitors who perished in the fire. Local thought seems to be divided as to whether the Art Gallery should be collocated. For me, it didn't detract and in fact I think some people would visit the gallery then also see the memorial. That said, perhaps some people don't feel comfortable to traverse the "art" to get to the emotion of the memorial. Sam de Mauro is the Brisbane based artist credited with the creation of the memorial.
My favourite piece of public art though is the owl sculpture. I tried really hard to fit this little guy into my handbag.
Lunch too was a high light. With two recommendations we had to have lunch at the Childers Hotel. $10 for chicken schnitzel, chips and salad, and it was so good. Then again, so was the icy cold beer.
Walking back down town after lunch we passed the historic NAB branch. The only one located on the highway, between Brisbane and Rockhampton according to local lore, and the Decay Slayer, translate that as the local dentist.
As for the old guy propped up on the bar, by the time we passed through again, he was snoozing.
With the highway running through town it really is a passing parade, Winnebago's. trucks, even a logging truck.
One final note to end with.....mosaic everywhere. My sort of heaven. With the shop fronts, shady awnings and pressed metal ceilings, the shopping centre is unique and picturesque. Add the mosaic pavement embellishment, and the public art throughout town and Childers really is a highlight. I was so pleased we had made time to visit the staff in the public library, otherwise we too, might have driven strait through. As it was, we had a wonderful insight into a unique regional community.