Why you should move to the western part of the Gympie region
JUST like the Village People suggested, it seems young men and women are going west, with young families the big winners in the west of the region.
Settlements such as Woolooga, Widgee, Lower Wonga and Glastonbury are all out west, as are the larger townships of Kilkivan and Goomeri.
These last two in particular are proving popular new addresses for young families looking for what Tom Grady of Tom Grady Real Estate refers to as a "lifestyle move".
"The two to 20 hectare properties are very attractive to younger families. People who still work in town but supplement their income or run a few horses or cattle," Mr Grady said.
A veteran of real estate in Gympie, with 39 years under his belt, Mr Grady said the western areas hold a great deal of promise.
"Demand in all areas has been growing over the last couple of years," Mr Grady said.
"It's the lifestyle attracting people to the western areas. I would say 90 per cent of the people who move west are after the affordability of that lifestyle. The others are moving to the towns to downsize and have money left over," he said.
"In the towns themselves we're getting older retirees and people looking to downsize. Then on the bigger properties, between 100-500 hectares you've got the graziers, the career cattlemen and women who take running the properties more seriously," he said.
Most of the newer homes in this area of the region are being constructed around Widgee, while the townships of Kilkivan and Goomeri are mainly made up of already established houses and properties.
There are several schools in the west, with primary schools at Woolooga and Widgee and P10 schools at Kilkivan and Goomeri. All four of these places have shops, general stores and service stations.
There are hotels at Woolooga, Kilkivan and Goomeri and all of the community hubs have different sporting venues such as golf clubs, showgrounds, tennis courts and Olympic-sized pools.
The west of the region has a number of celebrations throughout the year. These include The Goomeri Pumpkin Festival in May, the Kilkivan Great Horse Ride in September and the Widgee Bush Balladeers week in October.
A new event on the calendar is the Kenmore Park Country Music Muster at Lower Wonga.
This week-long event is due to take place over New Year's Eve this year, and has been slowly building a following over the last couple of years it has been running among country music enthusiasts.
Woolooga also plays host to some significant livestock sales several times a year, plus there are the annual agricultural shows in each of the major centres, as well as regular farmers markets scattered across the western section of the region.
The major events attract hundreds, if not thousands, of visitors to the area each year and help to boost their local economies significantly, while the smaller events prove popular for day-trippers and grey nomads.