240 people, 43 finalists, 22 winners at 2018 Business Awards
THE 2018 Gympie's Business Awards have been hailed the best yet, with more than 240 people attending at the Civic Centre on Saturday night, were 22 winners were recognised out of 43 finalists.
Farmer and Sun was crowned Business of the Year, with Aesthete Film and Photography winning Judges' Choice, and Victory College winning People's Choice.
Gympie Chamber of Commerce president Ben Riches said he was impressed with the array of nominations across the region's business sector.
"I'd like to thank all the businesses for getting behind the event, we have amazing businesses so it's great to see them celebrate each other's hard work," he said.
"It's the biggest turn-out that I know of, there was definitely an extra 50 people from last year which is good."
The judging panel comprised Jason Virtue, Michele Perrett, Scott Rowe and Lynne Wilbraham.
Mrs Perrett said it had not been easy to judge the awards night, with such strong nominations presented.
"It was very challenging but extremely rewarding on our judge's behalf that we were able to participate as the judges for this great community," Mrs Perrett said.
"I see there were 43 finalists who were here on Saturday night, so I think it's a true commitment to hat the Gympie community showcases."
Mr Virtue said he was excited to see so many businesses on board.
"There's many businesses in Gympie that are taking advantage of the challenges and opportunities that are coming our way," he said.
"We've seen a lot of them participating in the program this year, it was wonderful to see the talent and the creativity we've got out there in Gympie."
The business awards are a vital component to the Gympie region, Mrs Perrett said.
"They are extremely important and it's a credit to the Chamber of Commerce to actually initiate and to host an event of this magnitude to reward those businesses for all their hard work."
"It's really rewarding to see where they've come from and what their plans are for the future."
Winners and Runner-ups:
Educator: Gympie State High School won, Victory College runner-up
Not for Profit: Hope Reins won, Job Match runner-up
Work place of Choice: Jacaranda Dental won, Next Generation Electrix runner-up
Tourism Award: Rainbow Beach Horse Rides won, Cooloola Berries runner-up
Business Innovation: Smart Sinks won, Gympie Podiatry runner-up
Marketing: A Beautiful You won, Agents2Go runner-up
Small business: Hamilton Instruments and Electrical won, Velmec Automotive runner-up
New business: Branch and Blossom won, Kandanga Kitchen runner-up
Customer service hero: Adam Randell from Velmec Automotive won, Gingers Farm Fresh runner-up
Business of the year: Farmer and Sun won, Jacaranda Dental runner-up
Judges Choice: Aesthete Film and Photography - Jazmyn Smith
People's Choice Awards: Victory College won