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Secret tourism business to be revealed

SEVEN global megatrends influencing the future of tourism will be in the spotlight at this year’s University of Southern Queensland (USQ) Fraser Coast Open Day in August 2015.

With a new tourism major being introduced to the University’s Bachelor of Business program on-campus in 2016, Dr Elizabeth Saxon will present a 30-minute session introducing prospective students and visitors to the trends.

USQ Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Jan Thomas said the new program, headed by Dr Saxon, would allow Fraser Coast students to study tourism close to friends and family without leaving the region.

tourism

Ebony Andrew (left) and Danielle Mares talk with USQ Lecturer Elizabeth Saxon about the tourism degree.

“Hopefully those students will become business entrepreneurs, strengthening the local labour force and growing the economy,” Professor Thomas said.

Dr Saxon said her Open Day session titled Secret tourism business: the global megatrends affecting our future would outline the far-reaching impacts of tourism across the world.

“Businesses are built on tourism, relationships shaped by it and communities engaged (and enraged) by it,” Dr Saxon said.

“Visitors and businesses are affected by a variety of social, technological, economic and political factors as well as the natural environment.”

Meanwhile, Kingfisher Bay Resort Group General Manager David Hay said he was delighted to hear USQ Fraser Coast would offer tourism subjects at a tertiary level from 2016.

“As tourism is a major industry in our region it is a very exciting step to see that people who aspire to a career in this industry will be able to gain tertiary qualifications without having to leave the Fraser Coast,” Mr Hay said.

“There is a growing need for those who wish to make it their career to have higher level qualifications and access to these studies in our region which has been restricted to external options in the past.

“The decision by USQ to expand their offerings to include tourism is very welcome by those of us in the industry who seek to employ people with the appropriate level of skills and education.

“I congratulate USQ for making the decision to offer these majors in conjunction with your business degrees and I look forward to seeing the positive results for our region in the future.”

Dr Saxon has a PhD in sustainable tourism and has lectured extensively at undergraduate and postgraduate levels in economics, policy, planning, anthropology and tourism.

She also has extensive experience as a sustainable tourism consultant with national and international tourism businesses, governments and organisations.

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Feature photo: Hervey Bay is home for the humpback whales from August to October attracting tourists from across the globe.

Tourism – ready set go in 2016!

UNIVERSITY of Southern Queensland (USQ) Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Jan Thomas has announced the University’s Fraser Coast campus is expanding its Bachelor of Business program to include new majors in tourism, events, marketing and hospitality management.

Professor Thomas said the new programs would allow Fraser Coast students to study close to friends and family without leaving the region.

“Hopefully those students will become business entrepreneurs, strengthening the local labour force and growing the economy,” Professor Thomas said.

Heading the new tourism major being offered from USQ Fraser Coast in the first semester next year will be Dr Elizabeth Saxon.

Dr Saxon has a PhD in sustainable tourism and has lectured extensively at undergraduate and postgraduate levels in economics, policy, planning, anthropology and tourism.

She also has extensive experience as a sustainable tourism consultant with national and international tourism businesses, governments and organisations.

“I am very excited to be part of the USQ Fraser Coast team delivering the new on-campus tourism program next year,” Dr Saxon said.

“Tourism is a great area of study for potential students as employment opportunities and lifestyle choices are extremely diverse.

“Opportunities exist in accommodation, tours, transport, attractions and events sectors.

“Depending on personal preferences you can run your own business or be part of large company brand. You can work for government or not-for-profit organisations. You can also travel all over the world or work at home.”

USQ Fraser Coast Executive Manager Brett Langabeer said the Fraser Coast offered myriad opportunities for tourism ventures.

“There is so much potential here in Fraser Coast,” Mr Langabeer said.

“This region is a living laboratory for students studying tourism with its world heritage assets, award-winning ecotourism products and successful industry leaders.

“Who wouldn’t want to live, work and study here?

“USQ is excited about the expertise and industry experience Dr Saxon will bring to the tourism program.”

Contact USQ Fraser Coast for further information on the programs on (07) 4194 3133,
Freecall: 1800 007 252, or visit www.usq.edu.au.

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Photo:  Hervey Bay’s Ebony Andrew (left) and Danielle Mares chat with USQ Lecturer Dr Elizabeth Saxon about the University’s new tourism degree program being introduced at the Fraser Coast campus next year.

Muddy Waters keeps on rollin’

The wheels of change keep on turning for Muddy Waters Cafe

FIVE Spice Chilli Salt Squid with Green Papaya Salad and Tamarind and Palm Sugar Dressing is a far cry from the traditional stews served 150 years ago when sly grog running was rife and opium was a legal import at Queensland’s Port of Maryborough.

Where merchants once paid taxes, food-savy tourists now eagerly part with dollars to dine at Muddy Waters Cafe, close to where Mary Poppins and masses of other costumed characters flock during festival times.

Muddy Waters Cafe is found in the rear section of the historic Maryborough Customs House that overlooks the Mary River, home to the Queensland Lungfish and endangered Mary River Turtle.

Muddy Waters Cafe owners Michael and Mia Cox no longer worry about floods.

Muddy Waters Cafe owners Michael and Mia Cox no longer worry about floods.

More than 150 years ago, the river brought prosperity to the region but it also wreaked havoc when in 1893 it reached the record level of 22.20 metres and destroyed everything in its path.

A lot of water has passed under the Lamington and Granville bridges since then.

Muddy Waters Cafe owner and head chef Michael Cox and his wife Mia recently celebrated their first anniversary in the historic building, high above their old site.

To the east, the cafe’s name can still be seen painted on the wall of a near-abandoned marina where the low-lying riverside location caused them some hassles over the years.

“I worked there with the previous owner and saw a minor flood where they had to chock things up on bricks,” Michael says.

“A proposed dam in the Mary River Valley was set to solve the major floods so we thought any future floods shouldn’t be too bad. But after the dam failed to be built, our café went under water five times in three years.

“In our three years down there we couldn’t trade for a total of eight months and that hurt. If we didn’t have family helping us out, we wouldn’t be here. That’s what Maryborough’s all about – families.”

Although festivals such as the annual Relish Food and Wine Festival, World’s Greatest Pub Fest and Mary Poppins Festival bring the community out in force, this family-oriented city is not just popular with locals.

“Tourists love the river and the parks are fantastic,” he says.

“Wharf Street has the finest 1870s architecture that survives within Queensland today. Gataker’s Artspace is doing fantastic things and the Maryborough Military and Colonial Museum is regarded as one of the best community museums in Australia with over 3000 items of memorabilia.

“A few years ago Wharf Street was voted as being among the Top 10 tourist destinations in Queensland to see.

“Maryborough suits us just fine. We don’t like big cities but we like big city food.”

Five Spice Chilli Salt Squid with Green Papaya Salad and Tamarind and Palm Sugar Dressing is just one of the exceptional meals Michael, Mia and their team serve at Muddy Waters Cafe.

“It’s nice and fresh, made with five spices and chilli, so you get the five senses that appeal to Asian customers at the moment,” Michael says.

“We use mainly local produce and have a passion to provide healthy alternatives. Instead of simply having Salt and Pepper Squid that’s deep fried, our version is much healthier and very popular.”

Muddy Waters Cafe overlooks the Mary River.

Muddy Waters Cafe overlooks the Mary River in Maryborough, Qld.

With more than 30 years experience behind them, the Muddy Waters team serves a wide variety of delicious cuisine from Buttermilk Pancakes for breakfast to Citrus Cured Salmon with Zucchini and Corn Fritters, Avocado and Crème fraîche for lunch, and Braised Pork Belly with Ruby Grapefruit Salad, Black Pepper Caramel and Five Spice Crackling for dinner.

Muddy Waters Cafe is located at the rear of Maryborough Customs House, 133 Wharf Street, Maryborough, Queensland, and opens from Tuesday to Sunday from 9am to 4pm. For bookings or information, phone (07) 4121 5011.

For a guide to Maryborough’s historic port district known as Portside and the wider city visit the Customs House Interpretive Centre, next to Muddy Waters Cafe or visit http://www.ourfrasercoast.com.au/portside