Wotif reveals Australia’s ‘Next Big Thing’: The Big Melon in Chinchilla, Queensland
14 November 2018 – Today, leading online travel site Wotif has announced Chinchilla (QLD) as the home of Australia’s ‘Next Big Thing’, unveiling the newly-constructed Big Melon and ending a two-month nationwide pursuit to create Australia’s next oversized roadside attraction. Arguably the juiciest ‘Big Thing’ in Australia, The Big Melon adds to Queensland’s legion of iconic structures, with the state home to almost a third of Australia’s ‘Big Things’ including the Big Pineapple and the Big Mango.
After thousands of Aussies submitted their ‘Next Big Thing’ ideas, a tight two-week voting process saw the Big Melon battle it out against three other finalist towns; the Big Peanut, Kingaroy (QLD), Big Kilt, Glen Innes (NSW) and Big Tulip, Mittagong (NSW). While the unique flair of the Big Kilt and blooming beauty of the Big Tulip received strong support, they were no match for Queensland’s oversized edibles with the state’s Big Peanut and Big Melon drawing a close race to the finish.
Wotif Managing Director, Daniel Finch said, “We kicked off the search for Australia’s ‘Next Big Thing’ to celebrate Wotif’s 18th birthday in early September and since then, we’ve had widespread involvement from Aussies far and wide. While there can be only one winner, we’d like to thank each and every person who nominated, voted and supported the search for Australia’s ‘Next Big Thing’.
“In fact, we received such an overwhelming response at the final shortlisting stage, that the total number of votes equates to 70 per cent of the population in our four finalist towns. It goes to show the significance of ‘Big Things’ in Australia and how sentimental Aussies are about them.”
Australia’s newest ‘Big Thing’ celebrates the region’s rich melon industry and Chinchilla’s legendary event: MelonFest, where every two years, more than 15,000 travellers make the trip to Chinchilla to get their melon on at the world’s biggest melon festival.
A shoo-in for the town’s biannual melon weigh-in, The Big Melon stands at almost nine metres wide and over three metres tall, weighing four tonnes. Conveniently located at the Chinchilla Visitor Centre, the town hopes their Big Melon give Aussies another sweet reason to experience the region’s beautiful landscape and country hospitality.
Mayor of Western Downs Regional Council, Paul McVeigh said, “We are thrilled by Wotif's announcement that The Big Melon in Chinchilla will be Queensland's newest must-see attraction. The Western Downs is the tourist hotspot of regional Queensland with communities and events which draw thousands of people to the region every year. I could not think of a better way to capture the fun and excitement of visiting our region, especially after the Chinchilla Melon Festival, than by having your photo taken with our newest tourist attraction.”
Finch continues, “With the town now officially on the Aussie ‘Big Things’ tourist map, we hope The Big Melon provides travellers with fruitful experiences for years to come, and we encourage all Aussies to consider a road trip to the region.”
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