WELL DONE: Show president Joe Mooney congratulates ring steward Ian Frampton on his life membership award from the Gympie Show Society.
WELL DONE: Show president Joe Mooney congratulates ring steward Ian Frampton on his life membership award from the Gympie Show Society. Greg Miller

Gympie and District Show Society gets new life member

GYMPIE Show ring steward Ian Frampton was under the pump last week as he helped keep ring events moving at the Show.

The Cooloola Pumps and Irrigation director has also been a longstanding sponsor of the Show (and not only for equestrian events).

Show Society president Joe Mooney was delighted to congratulate him on his newly awarded life membership of the Gympie and District Show Society.

"Ian has called the horses from the stables for 20 years," Mr Mooney said.

"I've always loved the Show," Mr Frampton said, as Mr Mooney clapped him on the shoulder.

"It's always great to be a part of these events at this time of year.

"As marshalling steward, it's my job to keep this organised, as best as possible," Mr Frampton said.

"He's been working for us for 20 years and all we ever get from him is thank you," Mr Mooney said.

Mr Frampton backed Mr Mooney's call for young volunteers.

"It is a great experience, don't be shy," he said.

Mr Mooney was in an excellent position to vouch for that, having used the Show as an excuse to avoid school in his younger days.

"If the Show was on, they'd be saying, 'where's Joe?' but I'd be here," he said.

"We need more young people to come along to replace us as we get older.

"Don't be afraid of rejection and don't be shy," he said.

Now approaching seven years as Show Society president, Mr Mooney was vice president when he took over the presidency from Gympie businessman Lars Hedberg.

Joe is the youngest president and was the youngest vice president of any of the larger Queensland shows.

He came over from Mt Perry in 1983.

"Mum and dad had a dairy farm with some beef as well, but we got rid of the dairy herd in 1994," he said.

He worked on his first Show in 1984 and was in charge of the rodeo for more than 10 years.

But missing a few days of school did not stop him winning a Nuffield Scholarship for a report on hydroponic cattle feeding.

He was also involved in bullfighting for 25 years as a (rodeo) protective clown, coming between rampaging bulls and people who might otherwise get hurt.

"So the clowns get hurt instead," he explained.

"I thought they wouldn't want me," Mr Frampton said, of his early experiences as a Show volunteer.

"But I've done it for 20 years. They're always looking for help."

"One day they put Ian on the mic," Mr Mooney said.

"No one else wanted to do it and he's been calling all the horse events since," he said.