Pomona has had to reinvent herself with the changing tide of history and today is a vibrant and growing lifestyle town in the Noosa hinterland, equidistant from Nambour, Gympie and Noosa, and 140 kilometres from Brisbane.
Increasingly, professionals, retirees and young families are attracted by the feel of this special town, population 2000 that snuggles at the foot of Mt Cooroora, which derives its name from the local Gubbi Gubbi aboriginal name for high place. ‘The Mountain’, as the locals refer to the volcanic plug, has a benevolent, brooding presence that influences the local weather and provides a challenge for runners who each year race from the town centre to its 439m summit and down again – in less than 25 minutes for the champion. The annual King of the Mountain, http://kingofthemountain.com.au/ spectacle attracts an audience of up to 15,000 people.
Pomona is also the home of the Majestic Cinema, the oldest continuously running silent movie cinema in the world. Built as the Majestic Hall in 1921, it was used originally for social and sporting events and silent movies. ‘Talkies’ were introduced briefly in 1931, but the cinema reverted back to silent movies and today shows The Son of the Sheik, starring Rudolf Valentino, every Thursday, as well as a host of other events throughout the year.
The timber getting and dairying of the early European settlement years has given way to a new era of home businesses, furniture craftsmanship, trades services, cheese and wine makers, the manufacture of eco-homes and hemp clothes – and a revival of interest in hobby farms. New orchards and horticulture plots reinforce the town’s name. Pomona is the ancient Roman goddess of fruit and orchards.
Historic traditions and memories are honoured at the award-winning Noosa Museum and at the popular Majestic Theatre, where visitors enjoy daily screenings of old-time silent movies. The theatre proclaims itself to be the oldest continuously operated silent movie picture house in the world.
Details on history of Pomona and its buildings can be found at http://www.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au/addfiles/documents/walking/walk_pomona.pdf
In the valleys and on the hills surrounding Pomona are bed and breakfast establishments and retreats, including the Mt Cooroora Vipassana Centre for contemplation and self-enlightenment through techniques taught by the Buddha. Every day, about 60 people contribute to Pomona’s special karma. The Cooroora Institute brings together artists and artisans with public intellectuals to celebrate community connectedness to place and environment.
Locals prefer the shopping experience Pomona offers. The town is on a scale that allows people to park their car, or even walk to the central business district, to enjoy an intimate shopping experience. Within two blocks are banking services and supermarket, chemist, butcher, baker, clothing and opportunity shops, restaurants, newsagent, video store and hairdresser, even a quirky pub – the survivor of a main street fire of the 1930s that resulted in the business centre being rebuilt with art deco flourish.
Pomona also has a good range of professional services, including two doctors’ practices. Across the railway line from the town centre lays Factory Street, a name that betrays its purpose. Factory Street is home to service stations, a furniture factory in the former dairy cooperative, other manufacturing establishments, agricultural products businesses, commercial laundry, vehicle repair operations nursery and gift shop. A timberyard and vets are located nearby.
It is not unusual to see riders on horses and backpackers, sipping refreshment at one of the local coffee shops. Pomona is at the heart of the Noosa Trail Network, which radiates from town.
The schools of the Pomona district enjoy a strong reputation, due in part to dedicated teachers who appreciate the lifestyle the Noosa hinterland offers.
The town offers good basic services for those who don’t want to wander too far. For those who do, Pomona railway station has passenger train connections daily to Brisbane and Gympie. Buses link Cooran and Pomona with Cooroy, Noosa and Nambour. CouncilCabs are provided for the elderly and infirm – $2 one way from home to the shops and back.
For those looking to live and work in Pomona, contact one of the local real estate agents. Housing stock locally is much cheaper than nearby Noosa, yet Noosa is only a short drive away for those who want to appreciate its beaches, natural places and fine dining experiences.