25 YEARS ago on October 14, the Mareeba Heritage Museum and Visitor Information Centre was opened and it stands as one of Mareeba’s’ most important icons, to both tourists and locals alike.
Boasting a nationally recognised collection of Mareeba Shire history the Heritage Centre has been run by a group of passionate volunteers since it was opened in 1995.
The centre was initially built by five locals who went around to local businesses asking for money to build a Visitor Information Centre which would double as a heritage museum.
Mareeba Heritage Museum & Visitor Information Centre General Manager Janet Greenwood has seen the history behind Mareeba and is proud to be a part of the centre.
“Building the centre was a vision of five gentlemen in the community and they brought it to life,” she said.
“It was for tourism and it was also for preserving Mareeba and the history behind it.
“We are excited to be celebrating the 25 years it is a great recognition for everyone that is involved and the community as a whole.”
When the centre was opened in 1995 it was handed over to the council debt free before changing hands again in 2016 to the Mareeba Heritage Centre and Museum Board which have since run the centre.
The gathering of Mareeba’s history initially started at the Mareeba Rodeo Grounds where a small collection of history was on display before being acquired by the centre in its early days.
Chairman of the Mareeba Heritage Centre and Museum Tito Srhoj believes that the Heritage Centre is one of Mareeba’s biggest attractions.
“When you think of it what has Mareeba got, Other than farmers and the wineries? We haven’t got anything else this is it,” he said.
“I am very proud of what everyone has done to get the centre to where it is today in a small town like Mareeba.
“I’ve talked to tourists from all across Australia and they are amazed what this centre has got.”
The museum boasts collections of prospecting history to the largest tobacco exhibit in Australia with all of the pieces being from the Mareeba Shire, truly showcasing the history of the shire.
A small breakfast and celebration will be held on Wednesday morning to recognise the tireless work that the volunteers do at the Heritage Centre.