End Of An Era For Ice Worx


Marilyn Dean

Dean’s Ice was started over thirty years ago on 19 March 1993 from small beginnings.

We rented half a shed and set ourselves up with a small ice manufacturing machine, a container for storage of product, and a second-hand forklift.

As professional fishermen we needed bulk ice for our own use and other fishermen, but it soon became clear that the retail outlets for ice in Rainbow Beach were poorly serviced. 

Bagged ice was being transported from Gympie in an unrefrigerated truck over a road which was then classified as “the worst road to the most beautiful beach in Australia”.  

We decided to make wholesale packaged ice our focus.

During this time, we shovelled and packed 3.5 kilo bags of ice by hand, stacked bagged ice in the container by hand, and delivered it in the commonly named ‘Dino Truck’. 

As demand increased, we gradually updated our ice machine, storage, and vehicle.

In 1999, we decided both our premises and storage were inadequate, so we built a new factory at Karoonda Road.  

Over the years we continued to update our machines, storage, and truck. Until eventually we were producing 12 tons of ice in 24 hours, storing our bagged ice in two freezer rooms that could hold 160 pallets, and we upgraded our road truck to a freezer truck. 

The packaging of ice became fully automated with PLC (Programmable Logic Controllers). We were now delivering ice to Noosa North Shore, Gympie, Tin Can Bay, Rainbow Beach, Maryborough, Hervey Bay, Howard, and all of Fraser Island. 

Our customer base included caravan parks, supermarkets, corner shops, service stations, resorts, hotels, meat works, seafood processors, farmers, bait and tackle outlets, campers, and major events including Gympie Muster, Fishing Classics and Festivals.

In 2002 we purchased the beach vending business and permits, and the ‘Yellow Beach Trucks’ became an icon on Teewah Beach and Inskip Point camping areas wiith five Land Cruisers supplying ice, milk, bread, papers, ice creams, water, soft drinks, coffee and firewood. 

Unable to keep up the supply of firewood for campers and holiday makers we solved this issue by purchasing a portable sawmill so we could cut and bag our own firewood to sell.

As the only supplier of ice on Fraser Island the next step was to have a purpose built 4-wheel drive 8 ton freezer/chiller truck to service this area.  

This then became a full delivery service for other suppliers with the freight of fruit, vegetables, ice-creams, laundry, alcohol, frozen goods, bread and meat. 

We have always taken pride in the quality of our products, and the service we have provided to our customers, and we were rewarded by their loyalty and support and their continued business.

For this we have always been grateful. Thank You. 

We have enjoyed being part of the Rainbow Beach community, but after thirty years and three generations working in the Ice Worx it is now time for the Deans to move in a different direction.

Ian and Marilyn are retiring, Tony has moved into his area of expertise as a skipper working in North Queensland, Maddie has reduced her workload of up to four jobs down to one and is doing a university course in accounting, Jack has a mature age apprenticeship in fabrication, Kacy wants to travel overseas, and Mick has attained his marine engineer degree and skipper ticket.  

Of course, this is not a good-bye from the Deans as we have been in this region for over fifty years. You will still see Ian and Jack on the water fishing or putting in a crab pot or two and Maddie, Shelly, and Marilyn having a coffee somewhere in Rainbow Beach.

The new owner of Deans Ice Worx, Kleer Ice Supplies appreciates and understands the industry and is keen to work with our customers with a quality product and good service.

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