Sunshine Coast celebrates 50 years of its ‘new’ name

Sunshine Coast celebrates 50 years of its ‘new’ name

Did you know that until 50 years ago, the Sunshine Coast was just known as the “The Near North Coast”?

Pretty hard to believe for Queensland’s fastest growing tourism destination.

On August 1, 1967, The Maroochydore, Noosa and Landsborough shires all voted to adopt the name “Sunshine Coast”, after the region’s rapid growth in popularity and tourism.

But why name it the “Sunshine Coast”? Well, anything’s better than “Near North Coast” but the name change was best summed up by a tourism official at the time, R.M. O’Loughlin, who said:

“This area had something that could not be bought for gold: that was glorious sunshine”.

Today, the Sunshine Coast is one of the 10 biggest cities in Australia, with it’s own University and almost 300,000 people calling the sunny region home.

Around an hour’s drive north of Brisbane, the region stretches from Caloundra and the distinctive Glass House Mountains in the south, to the Hinterland and Mary Valley in the west, to Noosa and Rainbow Beach in the north.

Near North Coast

The Sunshine Coast Airport was recently named an international airport, with big plans to extend and upgrade it to attract an even wider range of domestic and international flights – further cementing it as a major Aussie hub.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary, the Sunshine Coast will host a series of special events over the next five months. This will include concerts, a poetry trail, a sand sculpture festival and the largest ever Horizons Arts Festival. Plus, a special commemorative exhibition retracing the region’s development.

Sunshine Coast Council Mayor, Mark Jamieson, and Visit Sunshine Coast CEO, Simon Latchford, are both extremely excited to see the events through and look back at the Sunshine Coast’s history.

“This anniversary milestone also allows us the opportunity to celebrate the region’s unique identity and to showcase the past, present and future.

“The exciting program of events, which will be held from August to December, will appeal to a broad range of ages and interests,” Mayor Jamieson said.

“The Sunshine Coast has always concentrated on showcasing its diversity: we are far more than just Sunshine and Coast, with our distinctive natural attractions, such as the Hinterland and Glass House Mountains, complementing our beautiful coastal attractions,” Latchford added.

“And we are constantly innovating. The new airport, plans for major new hotels and tourism attractions, blueprints for new town centres, massive expansion of our ‘agri-tourism’ sector and world-class tourism activities such as Swimming with Whales highlight our continuing commitment to offering fresh reasons to return.

“We invite the whole of Australia and the rest of the world to join us in the celebrations. Everyone is welcome.”

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