New Operators May Take Over Jindalee Jungle to Prevent Closure

After announcing plans to permanently close, Jindalee Jungle may have a shot at remaining open after all, thanks to new operators who have expressed interest in taking over the popular indoor play centre.

In mid-January 2023, the current owners posted a notice on its Facebook page that it will cease operations at the end of the month. 

Families who have been regulars of Jindalee Jungle were sad about the news, including a mom who had booked the place for her child’s birthday party in February. The indoor play centre has a cafe and several party rooms booked for private functions.  

However, the announcement has since been removed and the page has been advertising its opening hours.

In another Facebook post, the owners confirmed that “someone has offered to take over the jungle in February” but also clarified that “nothing is certain at this point.” The current owners, however, are still managing the facility until the 26th of January. No details of the new operators were revealed.

“This is a more intimate centre than some others which is nice, because it’s less overwhelming than the giant ones! Great service, lovely staff. Birthday parties are so easy and you don’t have to do a thing – heaven!” 


“Went for my sons birthday party today, was a great time, very clean place, staff were very friendly and helpful, the room was set up beautifully and the food was great too. Thank you so much Jindalee Jungle.” 


“Hosted our daughters 6th birthday here. Despite being a busy weekend the staff took great care of us. The food arrived at the exact time we asked for. It was really tasty and everything we asked was promptly taken care of. The play area is a bit small. So this place would be ideal for less than 5 year old however our 6 year old and her friends had a great time here. I would highly recommend this place.”


Contractors Chosen for the Centenary Bridge Upgrade

The contract for the Centenary Bridge upgrade has been awarded to the Georgiou Group and BMD Constructions in a joint venture that will ease traffic congestion by building three new lanes on the side of Jindalee and remediation of the current bridges. 

The upgrade will also entail improvements in the active transport facilities for pedestrians and cyclists accessing the Western Freeway Bikeway or visiting the Jindalee Skate Park.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the contractors and said that work on the Centenary Bridge upgrade will deliver more local jobs and ensure that residents of West Brisbane will be able to go home safer and sooner. 

More than 85,000 vehicles cross the bridge every day. Projected modelling revealed that the number of vehicles will increase to 152,000 vehicles per day by 2036.

Centenary Bridge
Photo Credit: TMR Queensland

Now that bridge is closer to construction, State Member for Mount Ommaney Jess Pugh said this is a belated Christmas gift for the community.

“I have advocated for this project since I was elected, as I know how desperately our community wants shovels in the ground,” Ms Pugh said

“Previous tender submissions came in low, and another even promised to build two new bridges with the funding – both options had to be thoroughly explored to make sure we were getting the best value for taxpayers.

“After consideration, we saw that these tender submissions could not deliver on what was promised. I’m pleased we can now move forward with a reliable, Queensland based joint venture, with over 40 years experience.

“The project will double capacity across the river, as well as improve access to Amazon Place Park while preserving the much-loved Jindalee Skate Park.

“We know how important it is to include safe options for cyclists and footpath users, especially those who travel on two wheels, in a wheelchair, mobility device, or pushing a pram.

“Construction will start next year, and I know locals are just as excited as I am.”

The almost $300-million project, however, received criticisms from the opposition for the delays and the added $50 million cost. The timing of the announcement during the holiday break also prevented public scrutiny. 

Centenary SHS Girl Representing Australia in Figure Skating Around the World

Photo Credit: ISU Junior Grand Prix/YouTube

It’s a rare sport that Australia doesn’t excel at on the world stage and the nation’s history in Figure Skating has not been stellar. However, since 1952, Australia has had competitors in every Winter Olympics Figure Skating competition apart from four, and 14 out of 18 isn’t bad for the sunburnt country, with Anthony Liu finishing 10th in 2002 and Joanne Carter’s 12th in 1998 being the highlights.

Now, there is a young lady from Centenary State High School tilting at windmills and just like Joanne Carter, she’s competing overseas at a very young age to test herself against the best.

Sienna Kaczmarczyk is 14 years old and currently competing across Europe as the sole Australian representative in some of the biggest junior competitions in the world.

Sienna trains at the prodigious Boondall Figure Skating Club, alongside many other Junior and Adult state champions and national representatives.

Her latest competition was the ISU Junior Grand Prix in Gdansk, Poland.

Her skate in Gdansk was by no means her best but undoubtedly gave her an incredible experience that will help build her international reputation…from Jindalee.

A few weeks earlier, she finished 3rd in Singapore at the SEA Open Trophy.

Jindalee’s Poolwerx Celebrates 30 Years With Firm Plans for Global Expansion

Photo Credit: Poolwerx/Facebook

Going into business may be risky but potentially rewarding, as Poolwerx founder John O’Brien has learned in 30 years. After establishing a small pool maintenance company in Jindalee in 1992, his company has been making a splash and setting sights on a global expansion. 

In the last year, Poolwerx grew its revenue by over $150 million from its operations across Australia and New Zealand. Mr O’Brien said that many homeowners have been “rediscovering” their backyards due to the pandemic as pool construction requirements grew by 30 per cent. 

According to the entrepreneur, Australian families are cocooning and focusing on spending time in their backyards. He believes that this renewed culture will remain even as lockdown restrictions are no longer in place.

However, Poolwerx has been tracking success prior to the lockdowns after expanding its franchise opportunities in the U.S. In July 2022, Mr O’Brien announced its partnership with Norwest, its newest global business partner. 

Currently, Poolwerx has 160 outlets and 600 mobile vans across Australia, New Zealand and the U.S. Plans are underway to open more franchises, including in Europe.

Poolwerx franchisees range from first-timers who want a shift from their office jobs to more savvy entrepreneurs who could handle multiple outlets. 

The company’s annual convention in August honoured the franchise partners that have contributed to its success as the largest franchise pool servicing brand in the world. The celebration was held in Port Douglas after two years of pandemic lockdowns. 

Poolwerx 30th Anniversary
John O’Brien and wife Helen Moroney with Michelle and Rob Hudson, Franchise Partners of the Year, 2022 | Photo Credit: Splash Magazine

Poolwerx 30th Anniversary Franchise Honourees

  • Franchise Partners of the Year, 2022 – Michelle and Rob Hudson, Albury and Wodonga, NSW
  • Retail Store of the Year – Ringwood, VIC
  • New Retail Store of the Year – Bendigo, VIC
  • Retail Salesperson of the Year – Simon Martin, Jimboomba, QLD
  • New Retail Salesperson of the Year – Nicky Seaton, Noosa, QLD
  • Pool & Spa Technician of the Year – Cory Thomson, Spearwood WA
  • New Pool & Spa Technician of the Year – Anthony Otto, Happy Valley, SA
  • Brand Excellence – Upper North Shore, NSW
  • Technical Excellence – Kalamunda, WA
  • Innovation & Entrepreneurial Excellence – Castle Hill, NSW
  • Rising Star – Auckland South, NZ
  • Most Improved – Wagga Wagga, NSW
  • B2B Excellence – Albury, VIC
  • Employer of the Year – Albany Creek, QLD
  • Top Mobile Sales (Single Territory) – Coffs Harbour, NSW
  • Top Cross Counter Sales – Dubbo, NSW
  • Top B2B Sales – Mt Gravatt, QLD
  • Top National Sales – Indooroopilly, QLD
  • Woman of the Year – Michaella Dunker, Jimboomba, QLD
  • Outstanding Team Contribution – Indooroopilly, QLD
  • PSC Team Member of the Year – Lesley Berry
  • BDM of the Year, Calan McIntosh, BNE North and Central QLD
  • Hall of Fame – Karen & Kevin Scott, Manduarah WA, Janelle & Chris Harzenberg, Beverly Hills, NSW and Andrew Kidd, CEO USA
  • FP of the Year BNE South, FNQ, Northern NSW – Jimboomba
  • FP of the Year BNE North, Central QLD – Indooroopilly
  • FP of the Year NSW & ACT – Upper North Shore
  • FP of the Year South Australia – Happy Valley
  • FP of the Year VIC & TAS – Albury
  • FP of the Year WA – Kalamunda
  • FP of the Year NZ – Bay of Plenty

Two Local Legends Join the Amazons Family Fresh Markets Team in Jindalee

Amazons Family Fresh Markets at DFO Jindalee, the biggest fruit-and-vegetable market in the western suburbs, is bringing out the big guns, with the recent addition of two powerhouse talents to their team: the “Banana King of the West” and one of the best butchers in Brisbane.

Mel Habchi

After many years trading at the Mt Ommaney Fruit Market, Mel Habchi and his staff have now joined the team at Amazons Family Fresh Markets.  

As the door closed on his lease at the Mount Ommaney Shopping Centre, a new door opened enabling Mel to continue sourcing and offering the freshest and best value fruit and veg in the Centenary area.

Mel Habchi
Photo Credit: Mel Habchi/Facebook

Mel has been called the “Banana King of the West.” Frankly, who can question his clout or buying prowess at the Brisbane fruit and veg markets when he’s able to offer fresh Cavendish bananas at $1.98 per kg when $4/kg is common at the major supermarkets (prices as of publishing date)? 

Huge boxes of Honey Murcott mandarins for $14.90. Broccoli at $2.98/Kg. All these make the big chain supermarkets look extremely expensive.

Rodney Gaddes

Rodney Geddes
Photo Credit: Supplied

Along with Mel, another local legend who has joined the team is Rodney Gaddes, a butcher with over 30 years’ experience. 

“I have been a butcher for more than 31 years, I was born on the farm and this is something I really love doing,” Rodney said, adding that he is happy to be joining the Amazons Family Fresh Markets team.  

Amazons Family Fresh meat
Photo Credit: Facebook/Amazon Family Fresh Markets DFO Jindalee

Rodney has been filling the cabinets with quality meats that have shoppers making a beeline for his choice cuts.

Photo Credit: Facebook/Amazon Family Fresh Markets DFO Jindalee

Amazons Family Fresh Market Reviews

“Beautiful fruit and veggies and always cheaper than Coles, I’m obsessed with this place. Plus you can pick up a hot chicken for $8 – how good.”

Alexandra Grunwald

“Great selection of fruit and other produce. The store is well laid out with easy access. Prices are really good.”

John Westwood

“Have stopped going to Rocklea markets since these guys have opened, just as fresh and similar value.”

Wilfred Mak
Amazon Family Fresh
Photo Credit: Supplied

You can follow their Facebook page for more updates.

Centenary Bridge Upgrades In Jindalee Will Be Delayed

Plans to upgrade Centenary Bridge are still a bit far from reality, after it has been announced that the three-year project is not expected to commence until 2023, instead of starting in 2022.

Read: Congested Section Of Centenary Motorway To Receive Much-needed Upgrades

Based on the original projected timeline, the project is supposed to commence in 2022 and will be complete by late 2026, weather and construction conditions permitting.

Photo credit:

However, Transport Minister Mark Bailey announced that there is an alternate bid being submitted for the project and that thorough due diligence is needed before construction could finally get underway.

The budget for the project has remained at $244 million ($132 million from the Queensland Government and $112 million from the Australian Government), however, planners are still closely monitoring global inflation of construction materials. 

Whilst it’s an ‘unfortunate’ situation, Mr Bailey assured it’s not going to be a huge delay which means the upgrades will be built as soon as possible.

Benefits of upgrading the bridge includes improving safety to reduce the frequency and severity of crashes on the Centenary Bridge and increasing capacity to improve travel-time reliability and cater for current and future traffic needs.

Artist’s impression of Centenary bridge (Photo credit:

Works for Centenary Motorway’s upgrades include remediation of the existing bridges to create three southbound lanes and a new three-lane bridge travelling northbound.

Active transport facilities will also be upgraded for pedestrians and people who ride bikes, with improved connections to the Western Freeway Bikeway and local destinations, including retention of the Jindalee Skate Park.

“While the Centenary Bridge upgrade does not include dedicated transit lanes, capacity and traffic flow will be improved by providing 3 lanes in each direction over the Brisbane River. This will increase efficiency and travel time reliability for public transport including buses travelling on the Centenary Bridge,” TMR said.

At present, around 85,000 vehicles cross the Centenary Motorway a day. But Transport and Main Roads’ current traffic modelling shows that by 2036, around 152,000 vehicles per day will want to cross the bridge. 

Visit Queensland Government’s website for further updates on the project.

Jindalee Local To Represent Country In Para-powerlifting At Commonwealth Games

Jindalee local Hani Watson is set to break Australia’s 16-year medal drought in para-powerlifting, after being named as one of the country’s representatives at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Read: Jindalee Siblings Recognised For Work on Raising Awareness About Childhood Stroke

Watson’s effort to lift 120kg in the 86kg+ class, on her first trip away from Australia, was considered outstanding given her relative inexperience in powerlifting. Watson has only been competing for less than a year and being ranked high is such a pat on the back for her.

Watson, 39, set a new Oceania record at the World Para-powerlifting Championships in Georgia in October 2021.

“I just want to keep competing and lifting my ranking until the rest of the world knows that there’s this female Aussie they should watch out for,” she said.

para powerlifting
Photo credit: Hani Watson/Facebook

Watson’s rise through the powerlifting ranks is a reward for the resilience she has shown after being born with bilateral metaphyseal dysplasia, which bowed her tibia and femur bones.

She underwent several surgeries in a bid to correct the problem and turned to weightlifting with the encouragement of her father, who was a bodybuilder, to build up their strength. But the condition eventually stopped Watson from being able to complete squats.

hani watson
Hani Watson with Coach Simon Bergner (Photo credit: Hani Watson/Facebook)

She was then approached by Australian Para-powerlifting coach Simon Bergner, who steered Watson towards a new goal.

“My Dad always told me, ‘Focus on your superpower’,” she said. “Bench pressing has made me feel empowered, especially as a woman.”

The last medal for Australia was given back in 2006, when Darren Gardiener took the bronze at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games.

Watson will be competing with Ben Wright, 35, from Perth. He is an Oceania record holder in two divisions, and will become just the second Australian after Leigh Skinner to compete in Para-powerlifting at three Commonwealth Games when he goes to Birmingham.

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games will be held from Thursday 28 July to Monday 8 August 2022 with the Para-powerlifting competition to be conducted on Thursday 4 August at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC).

Former Jindalee Resident Celebrates 100th Birthday With Trip Down Memory Lane

Former Jindalee resident Adeline, a resident at the Bolton Clarke Fairview Residential Aged Care community, recently celebrated her 100th birthday with a trip down memory lane.

Read: Restaurants and Health Care Tenancies Within Jindalee Direct Factory Outlet Proposed

Adeline or simply ‘Addie,’ was born in Gatton as the youngest of seven children. She grew up on a farm at Lake Clarendon in the Lockyer Valley.

One of her fondest memories as a child was riding a pony named Queenie when going to school. During school hours, Queenie would be let out in the paddock and at the end of the day one of Addie’s friends would round the pony up so that she could ride home again. 

Addie’s granddaughter Erin shared that her grandma worked on the home farm in Lake Clarendon and at McWhirter’s department store in Fortitude Valley, where she met and married her first husband, Stanley, in 1947. He was based in Brisbane for a short time during the war. 

Addie and Stan had one child Ross, and now has three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. 

When Stan passed away in 1987, Addie re-married few years later. The man was Fred, who happened to be her first boyfriend.

“Fred was her boyfriend as a teenager, but they lost contact. They reconnected at a funeral, years later and soon got married,” Erin shared.

Addie's 100th birthday
Photo supplied

Erin shared the two had three years together at Lowood until he passed away but in marrying Fred, she also gained stepchildren and all of their extended family who became like family to them.

After Fred died,  Addie returned to Brisbane and lived in Middle Park, Jindalee.

Erin shared that her grandma loved getting a chocolate milkshake and some chips from a popular fast food chain when they would go out to shop.

“She’s still going strong at 100 years old, and the family joke is that she will outlive us all!” Erin jokes, as Addie celebrates her 100th birthday and looks back at a lifetime of loving and living.

Motorists Warned Of Increased Risk Of Deer On Centenary Roads

Motorists are being warned to slow down and be on the lookout for deer on Centenary suburbs, especially in and around Mt Ommaney, Westlake, and Jindalee.

Read: Warning on Online Transactions Raised Following Darra Local’s Assault During Meet-Up

This comes after a video emerged showing a herd of deer crossing Westlake Drive, Mt Ommaney in front of an oncoming vehicle at night.

Many residents pointed out that there seems to be a growing deer population in Brisbane’s southwest, as clearly seen in the herds of deer wandering the streets and blocking roads.

Aside from creating a traffic hazard on roads, deer also damage native vegetation through browsing and trampling and ringbarking.

feral deer
Photo credit: Debabrata Das/Pexels

One resident quickly connected an urban legend with respect to the growing number of deer in these suburbs.

“Urban legend is that there was a deer farm in Brisbane back in the day and the wife divorced the husband and opened all the gates and let them out,” the comment reads.

Based on the popular urban legend, a couple once owned a large deer farm in Pullenvale. Following their divorce, locals said that the wife of the deer farmer apparently opened the gates to let the animals escape.

Locals who have had deer sightings, especially in the western suburbs, believe these animals are either from the herd or the descendants of the herd from the Pullenvale farm.

Whilst the story seems absurd, the Pullenvale deer farm owner confirmed in a radio interview that he used to own over 500 deer, but they escaped as a result of his marital woes.

deer in brisbane
Photo credit: Olga Lioncat/Pexels

The farm owner, John, who now lives in Cairns clarified it was his former mother-in-law and not his ex-wife who opened the gates to his deer farm.

Meanwhile, collisions between deer and vehicles normally increase during winter, particularly around June, when they hunt for food or look for shelter. 

Brisbane City Council reminds motorists to slow down when driving and exercise caution when they see deer or deer warning signs. Locals can submit a feral animal sightings report or call Council on 07 3403 8888.

Jindalee Welcomes 14th ‘Hello Harry’ Burger Franchise Store in Australia

Did you know that DFO Jindalee is now home to the 14th Australian franchise of Hello Harry, a growing chain of burger joints that started in the coastal town of Maroochydore nearly eight years ago?

In late November 2021, Hello Harry opened its doors to Jindalee locals and the rest of Brisbane’s south-western residents at the recently renovated shopping centre.

Known for its “no fluff or fuss” menu and “funky & fun” dining environment, the burger joint offers carefully hand-rolled patties with locally-sourced ingredients for its fillings and side dishes.

Jay and Inga Robinson manage the Jindalee franchise and they hope to grow the market of burger lovers who enjoy freshly-made burgers in-house with local produce. However, Tony Kelly is the mastermind behind Hello Harry’s first store in the Sunshine Coast. He and his partners have a simple idea for their eatery — good burgers with good ingredients but made promptly upon order.

All Hello Harry outlets across Australia carry a standard menu with the Dirty Harry burgers as the crowd favourite. This meal is made of double beef patties, grilled chicken, double cheese, crispy bacon, pickles, American mustard, house tomato jam, and mayo. 

Vegan and vegetarians are not left out since the burger joint also offers four kinds of plant-based burgers. 

Hello Harry Jindalee
Photo Credit: HelloHarry/Facebook
Hello Harry Jindalee
Photo Credit:

Hello Harry also runs a loyalty program, with a free sign-up, that allows members to earn points for discounts, freebies, and other privileges each time they dine at any of the outlets. 

Follow the restaurant on Facebook for updates.

Had a great meal here after the gym. Tried the naked chicken burger, and it did not disappoint. A generous serving of salad with avocado as the base made for a wholesome meal that was not heavy.

Julieann Ramsey

Can’t get a better burger than from here. Meat is super tasty and perfectly cooked, egg runny and bun just right. Service was also top-notch.

Nik Gresshoff

Great burger place. Offers a good variety of burgers. Their chips are amazing. Already a family favourite. There’s quite a bit of seating if you want to dine in. Staff are lovely.

Huong Nguyen