Kevin, Sharon and Jody Goodsir at the Queens Park Cafe with Cocky.
Kevin, Sharon and Jody Goodsir at the Queens Park Cafe with Cocky. Rob Williams

Royal history in park

QUEENS Park has a long and royal history and is growing in popularity as a local gathering spot.

Established in the late 1800s, Queens Park was named after Queen Victoria and has been host to many official events, large public gatherings and a space for families to gather and have fun. Central to the park is the Queens Park Cafe/Kiosk, itself having gone through some significant changes.

At the helm of this venue is husband and wife duo Kevin and Sharon Goodsir, along with daughter Jody Goodsir.

Their big smiles, warm greeting and can-do attitude says a great deal about the culture of this popular meeting place.

Before the new cafe and nature centre being developed, the Goodsir family ran the old kiosk, just across the road. They celebrated 10 years back in December last year and have seen it grow and take on a new life.

"We are very community focused. This is a business of course and we employ family and 25 staff. This is a place for the community and we do whatever we can to make sure that it has that focus," Kevin said.

Beside the huge crowd of people coming in for morning or afternoon tea or lunch, the cafe has been developed to cater for a range of functions including engagement parties, weddings, birthdays, christenings or naming ceremonies.

The venue is fully licensed and has recently expanded into opening on Thursday evenings.

"We started on the last week of November last year and we have been going week by week.

Each member of the family is actively involved in the day-to-day operation of the cafe. Sharon Goodsir said that she is "self taught" and held the position of tea lady for the Moreton Shire Council.

The kiosk stood vacant for a while before the Goodsirs decided to take it on.

"I had no idea of the challenge," said Jodi, who does not know how her parents managed in the early days of running the business. "They had three or four staff and they built it up to the point where it needed this new centre."

Originally from Zimbabwe, the Goodsirs love the Australian lifestyle. Kevin is an engineer and tends to deal with the behind the scenes work such as basic repairs.

A famous member of the family is the Goodsir's cockatoo. He is sometimes the reason people come over, and he is not in any way shy to put on a show for adoring fans.

Daughter Jody is taking on more responsibility looking after staffing and co-ordination.

"I worked in the kiosk but I have travelled and was based in the UK and moved around from there for a several years," she said.

"I was here for the opening but went back and am now here again and involved in the business, really getting into the marketing," she said.

The family has a vast experience in many different fields. Each hasa deep commitment to quality food, good prices and excellent customer service.

They host regular guests coming into the cafe/kiosk from bus trips and have small corporate functions.

They also cater for offsite events that you can collect at a time arranged.

"We employ people with a disability, those on supported wages and pensioners. We believe everyone needs a chance and we have a good crew, they are very positive," Sharon said.

Queens Park Kiosk is open seven days a week from 9am to 5pm, Thursday 9pm and a earlier start for breakfast on Sunday from 8am.

Phone them on 3281 5167, go on Facebook, and get along to enjoy this very special place.

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