Having a chat at Bororen Produce Shop are (from left) Jim Marshall, Gary Cox and Lisa Grady.
Having a chat at Bororen Produce Shop are (from left) Jim Marshall, Gary Cox and Lisa Grady. Helen Spelitis

Getting to know the locals at Bororen Produce Shop

THE best stories can be found in the least obvious places.

Reporter Helen Spelitis found some gems at the backbone of Bororen's farming community - the local produce shop - when she dropped in on Tuesday afternoon:

Jim Marshall is a produce shop customer and carpenter.

For 20 years Jim Marshall was a soldier, but now he spends his days making rocking horses.

Since 1989 Mr Marshall has handcrafted 173 rocking horses - an average of six a year.

"A man is coming all the way from Tasmania to have a look at one - I told him it was $10,500 and he is still interested," he said.

He makes rocking horses because it is such a rewarding hobby and puts his skills to good use.

"I am not very good with a pen and paper, but I can whittle a piece of wood," he said.

"I've worked on everything from model planes to houses, but I always have a rocking horse or two in production - I have six I'm working on at the moment."

This talented craftsman usually calls Toowoomba home, but has been staying at Turkey Beach spending time with his grandkids.

Gary Cox works at Bororen Produce Shop, and is close to becoming part of the furniture.

When the little town of Pomona south-west of Gympie, in the Sunshine coast hinterland, started to lose its rural feel he knew it was time to pack up and move on.

He landed in Bororen and because he is a qualified electrician, had thoughts of working at the smelter.

But through different people he already knew he wound up working at the Bororen Produce Shop one week after he moved to town.

That was 20 years ago.

"Brett and Lisa got a discount to take me too when they bought the place, I'm sure of it," he quipped.

"I love living and working here. It's the farm community and rural people in general.

"More than anything we all like the same things. We have similar interests so there is always plenty to talk about."

Lisa Grady is the owner of Bororen Produce Shop. It was work that brought her to the Gladstone region and love that made her stay.

She moved to Gladstone city in the mid-'90s to work for the council as a health officer after she finished university.

It was in Gladstone she met her husband Brett, a Bororen local.

Ten years ago they decided to buy the Bororen Produce Shop and today they sell six tonnes of feed every week.

The family has also entered the cattle game, running about 50 head on the property Brett's parents used to own.

"We had a young family at the time and thought it would be a good change of lifestyle," Lisa said.

"It's good because you can choose the hours you work. If there is something on at school I can go."



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