EXCLUSIVE: Popular Gympie business makes major announcement
IT'S a changing of the guard at the Gympie Jungle, but the timing is perfect for both outgoing founders Phil and Chris Wilson and incoming owners Tony and Sam Forsyth.
Mr and Mrs Wilson enjoyed a fulfilling journey since building and opening the Jungle in November 2015 as relative newcomers to the community, but a desire to travel and spend more time with family has spurred them to pass the baton.
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"We're builders and creators, we came to Gympie and built our own house and then we finished doing that and built this,” Mrs Wilson said.
"It's made us a part of the community, it's really hard in a small community to actually become part of it.
"We've met some amazing people through here that have become close friends, so that's quite lovely.
"I'm really excited because Sam's really happy and energetic and just the sort of person who I want to be here.”
A "lifestyle change” was the main inspiration for the Forsyth family to take on the business.
"It was something we thought we'd ask about and it snowballed really fast into buying it,” Mrs Forsyth said.
"My husband drives trucks and I work in aged care so it's something we can do as a family (to) have a bit of a lifestyle change.
"We're going to get settled first and try and continue what Chris has done so far.”
Also along for the new adventure is the Fosyth's son Wyatt, who has embraced his new role as 'Giggles' the monkey.
Wyatt said his favourite thing about donning the Giggles suit was "seeing kids smile”.
The official handover of the Gympie Jungle takes place today.