Balonne Shire Welcome Ambassadors
Balonne Shire Welcome Ambassadors

Social media campaign to help boost outback tourism

THE Balonne Shire Council is welcoming people to the region as COVID-19 restrictions continue to lift and the borders open back up.

Balonne Shire mayor Samantha O’Toole said the reopening of the region’s border towns of Hebel and Mungindi will see the Balonne becoming the safest route to the Outback.

“Our community has worked with quiet good-humoured resolve to implement all necessary procedures to ensure we can safely welcome visitors to our place,” she said.

“At our place, you can live like a local, and life in our seven river towns of St George, Dirranbandi, Hebel, Bollon, Nindigully, Thallon and Mungindi is as relaxed or as busy as you make it.”

Cr O’Toole said the region has a heartwarming story of hope to share.

“After years of drought, there was finally flooding rain, and we were ready to welcome visitors after our St George Matesong put us on the world stage only to be shut down by COVID-19.

“Our community responded to the crisis by using the time to renovate and refresh our tourism and hospitality facilities, always confident of blue skies ahead.”

Cr O’Toole said the community have been practising their Welcome Ambassador skills on friends and family.

“It’s been fun watching locals guiding family and friends around the region’s attractions from wildlife walks down the Wallam at Bollon, to taking in Dirranbandi’s bright lights and wine tasting at Riversands in St George which is Queensland’s most western vineyard,” she said.

“Facebook is cluttered with selfies in front of the famous painted silos, and William the Giant Wombat at Thallon, and the new Boomerangs at Nindigully where Hugh Jackman began his film career have been popular as well as the One Ton Post at Mungindi.”

Cr O’Toole is encouraging everyone to share the joy of St George and surrounds with the #WelcomeToOurPlace hashtag.

“Looking for five star?

“Here we’ve got a million stars, and we’re rolling out the red carpet to invite you on the holiday of a lifetime at our place.”