Preparations for 2019 Sweet Days, Hot Nights Festival underway

Whilst the crushing season has not even ended yet, preparations for the 2019 Sweet Days, Hot Nights Festival are already underway.

Home Hill stalwart Doug ‘Chippo’ Chappell and a large group of dedicated volunteers planted nearly one hectare of purpose-grown sugarcane last month- more than seven months out from the event.

“We’ve had a lot of people that were very interested in helping, which is a good thing. It was a real community effort,” Mr Chappell said.

Last year, more than 5,000 locals and visitors flocked to the Home Hill Showgrounds across two days to take part in the rebranded festival.

Burdekin Shire Council Mayor Lyn McLaughlin advised those not wanting to miss the 2019 festival to mark their calendars.

“Festival-goers can hear the roar of the First Fire on Thursday 30 May and witness the power of the Australian Hand Cane Cutting Championships on Saturday 2 June,” Cr McLaughlin said.

“The Sweet Days, Hot Nights Festival celebrates what’s great about our region- from our rich agriculture to country hospitality, combined with great music, paddock to plate food, cultural activities and family-friendly entertainment.”

Local businesses are once again being invited to bring the festival to life, with a range of sponsorship opportunities available.

The sponsors of the 2018 event have already been contacted and have until Friday 7 December to return their sponsorship forms. A second round will then open on Wednesday 12 December for any remaining sponsorship opportunities.

Cr McLaughlin said there may be opportunity for further events to be added to the festival in 2019, with Council actively seeking funding opportunities.

“We want to cement the Sweet Days, Hot Nights Festival as a feature festival throughout Queensland.

“There’s not too many other places in Australia you can see the raw power of a sugar cane up close and feel the heat on your skin.

“The Sweet Days, Hot Nights Festival is a uniquely Burdekin event.”

Burdekin swimmer Michelle Scott cleans up at Pan Pacific Masters Games

Burdekin star swimmer Michelle Scott has returned from the 2018 Pan Pacific Masters Games on the Gold Coast with 10 more additions for her already full trophy cabinet.

Mrs Scott, who competed in the maximum allowable 12 events last week, walked away with six gold and four silver medals, and broke four state records- two of which were her own. She also broke four Pan Pacific Games records and created one games record.

However, the decorated athlete, who has been competing in the masters competition since 2012, was a late entrant in the 2018 games.

“I only decided probably two months before I went to Pan Pacs that I’d actually go. I was a bit unsure of whether I’d go and just kept swimming because I like it for fitness. The deadline for nominating kept getting closer, and I thought I might as well,” Mrs Scott said.

The achievements are particularly remarkable as the games experienced a record number of entrants this year, with 571 male and female swimmers competing in the pool.

Burdekin Shire Council Mayor congratulated Mrs Scott, who also works at Council, on her extraordinary achievements.

“Achieving competitive success in any sport is always a tough endeavour, however to win so resoundingly across the board is extremely inspiring.

“On behalf of Burdekin Shire Council and the community, I congratulate Michelle on her accomplishments.”

Cr McLaughlin said she was pleased that Council could offer quality training facilities for swimmers in the Burdekin Shire.

“Having an Olympic sized pool is such an asset for a shire of our size and allows our swimmers to train competitively.

“Council staff and contractors worked incredibly hard over the past few months to ensure the Ayr pool only suffered minor disruptions when a major leak was detected in early September.

“They did a brilliant job, with the pool only closed for a few weeks before the September school holiday period.

“I commend them on their work, which means swimmers can now take full advantage of the facility as we head into summer.”

Meanwhile, Mrs Scott said she hasn’t yet decided whether she’ll compete in the games in two years’ time, and to ask again in August 2020.


René Le Feuvre to headline Burdekin Community Christmas Carols

The Voice star René Le Feuvre has been announced as the headline act for this year’s Community Christmas Carols, happening on Sunday 9 December at Watson’s Green, Home Hill.

20-year old Le Feuvre, who grew up in the Burdekin before moving to the Gold Coast, rose to prominence on this year’s season of Channel Nine’s The Voice.

The talented singer impressed judges with his heartfelt rendition of I Like Me Better by Lauv, impressing coach Boy George enough to turn his chair and select Le Feuvre for his team.

Since then, he has performed at major events including the Sweet Days, Hot Nights Festival and the Transplant Games opening ceremony.

Le Feuvre said “I’m super excited to come back to the Burdekin and perform as part of the 2018 Community Christmas Carols. I really love being in North Queensland, and I know this will be a fun night for everyone involved.”

Nine News Adelaide reporter Reece D’Alessandro, who also grew up in the Burdekin, will MC the evening.

Burdekin Shire Council Mayor Lyn McLaughlin said Le Feuvre and D’Alessandro will light up the stage alongside other Burdekin talents, including singers Jasmin Delle Baite and Amaia Licciardello.

“The Burdekin Community Christmas Carols has previously had some big performers, and this year is no exception,” Cr McLaughlin said.

“More than 40 local dancers, singers and musicians will join in the celebrations on stage.

“Council continues to support home grown talent, as we always do, and are excited to see René and Reece return to where it all began.”

The fun-filled community event will include:

  • Free face painting;
  • Photo booth;
  • Market stalls;
  • Children’s lantern parade; and
  • Performances by groups including KHDance, Perform Music Choir and Rhythm Edge Dance School.

Cr McLaughlin said children can also expect visits from Christmas Minnie and Mickey Mouse and of course Santa Claus.


Event Details

When: Sunday 9 December, 5:30pm

Where:  Watson’s Green, Home Hill

Cost: Free entry


The Burdekin Community Christmas Carols is supported by the Burdekin Advocate, Burdekin Church Leaders Association and Burdekin Shire Council.


Notice to Conserve Water – Mt Kelly – Wednesday 14 November 2018

For any queries, please contact Council’s Customer Service Centre on 4783 9800 between the hours of 8:00am and 5:00pm.

Job Vacancy 18/70 – Administration and Records Coordinator

Burdekin Shire Council is seeking applications for an Administration and Records Coordinator to lead and coordinate Council’s Administration and Records Sections which includes Records Management, Council meeting support and various organisational administration duties.

The Position

The key responsibilities include:

  • Supervision of the Administration and Records section.
  • Ongoing development and maintenance of the Council’s electronic document management system (ECM) including relevant policies, procedures, operational standards and retention and disposal schedules.
  • Coordinate and conduct routine disposal, retention, preservation and transfer of records in accordance with the Public Records Act, 2002 and relevant legislation.
  • Promote sound records management practices and responsibilities throughout Council.
  • Administer and maintain Council’s agenda and minute system and provide training to other officers in the use of the system.
  • Oversee the classification of Council’s correspondence including the referral of correspondence to relevant meetings and the allocation of tasks to relevant officers to ensure all correspondence is dealt with efficiently.

The Person

The successful applicant will possess the following attributes at a minimum:

  • Demonstrated skills in leadership, team development and staff development.
  • Demonstrated experience in office administration and record-keeping procedures.
  • Thorough knowledge of agenda preparation and minute taking procedures and practices.
  • Demonstrated ability to understand and learn software applications relevant to the work environment.
  • Demonstrated understanding of corporate policy and processes and how they relate to sound Record Management.

Applicants should familiarise themselves with the entire position description.

The applicable salary is to a ceiling of Level 5 ($83,443pa) with the commencing salary dependent upon the skills and experience of the successful applicant.

Applications for 18/70 – Administration and Records Coordinator should include:

  • A cover letter
  • A current resume
  • Statements addressing the selection criteria found in the Position Description

Applications can be submitted using one of the following methods:

Applications close on Wednesday, 28 November 2018 2018 at 5.00pm. Word or PDF format is preferable.

For further information please contact Kim Olsen – Manager Financial and Administrative Services on (07) 4783 9800.

Download the Application Package

Council to highlight iconic Burdekin events

Council will help expose iconic Burdekin events to a wider audience from 2019 by funding the development of a dedicated Destination Events Calendar.

This calendar, which will be separate to Council’s Community Events Calendar, will focus on showcasing the region’s hallmark and unique events.

Burdekin Shire Council Mayor Lyn McLaughlin said Council had acknowledged the need to focus on event diversification and development in order to grow the local visitor economy.

“In August of this year, Council adopted the Burdekin Tourism Strategy, which established a road map for unlocking the region’s tourism potential and for unlocking sustainable opportunities across the region,” Cr McLaughlin said.

“In preparing this strategy, it was discovered that in 2017 only 28% of visitors to the Burdekin stayed longer than one day.

“We have so many great, quirky, unique and exciting events happening throughout our Shire every year.

“We want to show potential visitors that there are plenty of great reasons to stay overnight in the Burdekin.”

The calendar is being created as part of a wider purpose-built tourism website designed to drive visitors to the region.

“Not only will Council promote hallmark events through the Destination Events Calendar on Council’s impending tourism website, we will also produce flyers, brochures and many other documents which will be available at regional expos and Visitor Information Centres, reaching thousands of potential visitors.”

Cr Lyn McLaughlin said all businesses, community groups and sporting groups who stage events in the Burdekin are encouraged to submit their event for consideration.

Initial closing date for applications to be considered for the online Destination Calendar of Events and physical documents is Monday 26 November, however applications may be accepted after this date for the online calendar only. Applications are available from Council’s website or by emailing.

Council is also helping local tourism vendors improve their digital marketing by hosting two Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) workshops on Thursday 29 November.

The ADTW is Australia’s national tourism database and distribution platform which represents over 40,000 small and medium sized tourism products and destinations.

This platform then feeds to State and Territory Tourism Organisations’ consumer websites, the website and through ATDW’s extensive network of over 200 tourism distributors.

Council’s workshops will explain how to effectively list events or products through the ADTW website.

Workshops will be held at Council Chambers (145 Young Street, Ayr) at 10am-11am and 5:30pm-6:30pm on Thursday 29 November.

To register for either of these workshops emailwith your preferred session time.

Corica Road – Drainage Works

Burdekin Shire Council advises that drainage works will be undertaken on Corica Road approximately 1km from Sexton Road intersection commencing Monday 12th November 2018. The works are expected to be completed by Friday 7th December 2018, weather and construction conditions permitting.

All construction works will occur Monday to Saturday between 7.00am and 6.00pm.

Corica Road will remain open during these works but will be subject to changed traffic conditions, including lane closures and reduced speed limits to enable work to be undertaken safely and efficiently.

What to expect:

  • Temporary Lane Closures
  • Speed Restrictions
  • Dust associated with construction activities

Every effort will be made to keep disruption to a minimum for road users during the construction period. Burdekin Shire Council thanks residents and road users for their patience during these works.

For further information please contact Council’s Customer Service Team 4783 9930

Notice to Conserve Water – Mt Kelly – Saturday 10 November 2018


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