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Fun Day At Dairy Museum

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Queensland Dairy Museum Open Day

Kahlia Huddleston, from Murgon, enjoyed the opportunity to pat a dairy cow at the Queensland Dairy Museum's Open Day last year

South Burnett And Cherbourg On ShowOctober 3, 2014

The Queensland Dairy Industry Museum will be holding a rare Open Day on Saturday, October 4, and it looks like being a fun morning out for all the family.

Between 10:00am and 2:00pm, the Museum will be running working displays of butter making, hand milking, shingle splitting and milk separating.

You can learn how to make damper; watch whip-crackers and leather craftsmen in action; and see cross-cut saws up close.

Dairy Industry Museum

How is butter made? See the process at a working butter-making display

There’ll also be displays of antique engines, blacksmithing, rope making and a draught horse-driven grain grinder, along with antique machinery and wool spinning..

Children can enjoy milking a cow, an animal nursery, a jumping castle and miniature pony rides, along with an old-fashioned lolly stall; and billy tea, damper and other light refreshments will be available too.

And adults can enjoy great live country music entertainment, along with bush poetry readings, that will be playing in the grounds all morning.

The Dairy Industry Museum is located at 2 Sommerville Street on the southern side of Murgon, just off the Gayndah Road, and it was established in 1988 to recognise the importance that dairying once played in the area.

Dairying began in the Murgon area in the early 1900s when the railway came to the town, and grew quickly after a local progress association successfully agitated for a railway goods shed in 1908.

However, most milk and cream produced in the area at that time was railed to Tiaro. And to avoid losing suppliers to a new factory that had opened in Kingaroy, Murgon and Tiaro interests combined to open a butter factory at Murgon in 1913.

Branch lines opening up the Proston and Windera areas in the 1920s expanded dairying production even further.

And this, in turn, led to the enlargement of the Murgon butter factory in 1928 and later the creation of the Murgon Cheese Factory, which operated until 1995.

The Museum is a treasure trove of historic buildings and memorabilia that chronicle all this history, and they’ll all be open on Saturday as well.

Its large complex houses several historic buildings including Trinity House (c. 1893), an original Burnett slab construction homestead; Castra, the first house built in Murgon (c. 1904); the old Bank Of NSW building (c. 1906); and an old chapel (1932).

The Museum’s collection includes:

  • Newspapers from 1800
  • Wage books, 1930 from the Butter Factor in Murgon
  • All machinery used in dairy farming, from 1890-2000
  • Large butter vats
  • Cheese-making machines
  • Powdered milk machines
  • Butter boxes, cream separators
  • Collection of old exchanges and phones
  • Books dating back to the 1800
  • A very large lapidary collection
  • And much more.

Admission to the Open Day is $5 for adults, and children under 12 are free.

You can contact the Museum by phoning (07) 4169-5001.

Queensland Dairy Museum Open Day

The Dairy Industry Museum's grounds will be enlivened by a giant jumping castle; stalls and working displays will also be dotted around the site

Queensland Dairy Museum Open Day

Katelyn Leverton, from Murgon, watches as a handler from Red Dust Miniature Horses demonstrates how to crawl under a miniature horse at last year's Open Day

Queensland Dairy Museum Open Day

Museum volunteers dressed up in dairy maid costumes will be serving up billy tea and damper to hungry Queensland Dairy Industry Museum visitors (Photo: Leo Geraghty)

Anderssons Fruit Market for quality fruits and vegetables