WINDING DOWN: The Killarney Picnic Basket Day is back again this weekend, at the sprawling Melrose Station.
WINDING DOWN: The Killarney Picnic Basket Day is back again this weekend, at the sprawling Melrose Station. John Towells

Bask in the bliss of a picnic

SWITCH off your phone, kick off your shoes and throw down a picnic blanket for a blissful Sunday in country paradise.

Killarney's magnificent Melrose Station will again host the annual Picnic Basket Day, with more than 3000 people expected to make the journey to the scenic gem.

The day, which is in its third year, is focused on the unique tastes of the Southern Downs and will showcase some of the best produce from the region.

Organiser Debbie Bradfield said visitors could BYO or simply bring an empty basket and fill it on the day.

"There will be taste testing on offer from Ballandean Esate Winery, the Brass Monkey Brewery and we have Jo and Co gourmet teas coming from Toowoomba for the third time,” she said.

"There will also be items from the Stanthorpe Cheese Factory, Mt Stirling Olives, Debbie Hughes's honey, Steve Carey will be bringing his award-winning kabana, and the Bramble Patch will be there with their pastes.”

The day aims to raise awareness for Livin', a not-for-profit suicide prevention organisation, which Mrs Bradfield said was one of the reasons the day was so well-supported.

"The day has a very good reputation for being a perfect family day out and the whole day is about living well by reading a book, spending time with family and just relaxing,” she said.

"Livin's aim is to wipe out the stigma around mental health and it is such a big issue in our community - and the whole nation - so if we can help one person live well, then we have done what we need to do.”

Mrs Bradfield said the day also allowed for financial support to the community's vital service clubs and groups.

"Last year we took $38,000 on the day and we donated $7000 to Livin',” Mrs Bradfield said.

"The rest went back into the community and the groups in the Killarney and district area.”

As word continues to spread about the unique event, the small community's reputation as a desirable tourist destination soars.

"We are trying to put Killarney on the map and to encourage people to return to the area because there are a lot of great things here to offer them,” she said.

"And it's not just Killarney - we want to encourage people to go to Stanthorpe for the wineries and to visit all parts of the region.”

Killarney Picnic Basket Day kicks of from 10am Sunday and will feature kite building and flying (for $5), entertainment and of course, great food.

Don't forget to bring your chair, a blanket and some cash for the stalls. Kids are encouraged to bring their favourite cuddly soft mate for the teddy bears' picnic.

Weather updates will be posted to the Killarney Picnic Basket Day Facebook page.


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