On track for huge event
IN THE lead-up to the Kingaroy Show, Gary Barron transformed a little four-wheel engine formerly used to pull aeroplanes into a wonderland for kids.
Mr Barron spent the last month creating a three-carriage train destined to chauffeur kids at the show this weekend.
"I stumbled upon the little engine and thought 'I've got a vision for that'," he said.
"My son couldn't understand what I'd want with the old thing."
Mr Barron said he spent many sleepless nights thinking how he could turn his modest idea into reality.
"I stayed up at night drawing up plans," he said.
"But I'm no engineer so we just went as we went."
The colourful addition to the show was not the only project Mr Barron has devoted his time to.
He personally put together more than 14,000 gift bags to hand out for free to children at the weekend.
"I know what it's like to struggle in life and have nothing," he said.
"Some kids are able to have things that others aren't. I just want to look after the kids.
"So all kids, no matter what walk of life, can walk away with something."
To put the gift bags together, Mr Barron raised funds by selling used batteries for recycling.
"We had the greatest response ever and raised about $10,000," he said.
He said the money raised allowed them to create exciting gifts for the kids.
"I've certainly got a passion for the bags and a passion for the kids," he said.
"That's what really motivated me to do this."
He said kids could pick up a ticket at the gate when they arrived, then collect a gift bag at the trade hall at the show.
The 108th annual Kingaroy Show opens its gates at the Kingaroy Showgrounds on May 2-May 3.
Visit Kingaroy Show Society for a full list of events.