Kelly the Tractor and Ruth the Rake, that is. The equipment was named for two remarkable ladies – Bruce and Terri Geissmann’s daughter Kelly and Rainbow Beach Progress Association member Ruth Modin.
“Like a wedding, the bride was a little late,” Ruth told the supporters on the beach when the tractor was presented to the Progress Association. “Greg Inglis from National Parks said there could be a chance the tractor would be available and we waited very patiently.”
Ruth stressed there was “very, very little funding in town”, and that Rainbow Beach was “built on chook raffles”.
Ruth praised the inspiring business owners that started the “fundraising overdrive” for the beach rake, as well as the generous community members who helped reach the amount required.
Member for Gympie David Gibson said the donation was another example of the Rainbow Beach community working together.
“When locals started fundraising to clean-up the beach, they were able to purchase equipment from the USA to do the job but the money didn’t quite stretch far enough,” Mr Gibson said.
“This donation of a tractor today completes the task and I want to thank the QPWS and Minister Dickson for their support of this community.”
Approval was sought by local rangers to donate their QPWS tractor, after replacement by a newer model, knowing community need.
The tractor will also be available for use by other community groups including Cooloola CoastCare, Rainbow Beach Surf Lifesaving Association, LandCare and the Residents and Rate Payers Association.
Rainbow Beach Progress Association member Ruth Modin said “It’s fantastic to see the Rainbow Beach community and QPWS working together like this and everyone is very grateful for this generous donation.”
Cr Mark McDonald (GRC), Ruth Modin (Progress Association), QPWS representatives Peter Wright, Greg Inglis and Grant Phelan, MP David Gibson and Sandy Brosnan (Progress Association)
Mr Rod Parker drives the tractor and rake onto the beach