HAPPY BIRTHDAY: Ma Ma Creek Milk Bar Debra Wallis will celebrate one year of business with free cake on Wednesday. PHOTO: Supplied
HAPPY BIRTHDAY: Ma Ma Creek Milk Bar Debra Wallis will celebrate one year of business with free cake on Wednesday. PHOTO: Supplied

Milk bar celebrates first birthday with free cake

THE Ma Ma Creek Milk Bar is celebrating its first birthday on July 1, with free cake, a raffle giveaway, and lashings of praise for the local community that has helped the local business through the past couple of months.

Owners Debra and Alan Wallis bought the general store after “taking a hiatus” and leaving the hospitality industry as owners of a hotel in the South Burnett and moving to Gatton to renovate a house.

Ms Wallis said she had always dreamt of running a milk bar, and was keen to “put our stamp” on the business.

“It had that ‘old time’ era feel about it. We have 60s era cars and I’ve always been really fascinated with the whole milk bar thing – it’s such a fun era.

“We’ve got a lot of ideas we want to do over the next five to seven years so it’s a long-term commitment for us.”

Ms Wallis said she envisaged the milk bar as reflecting the atmosphere of a diner while also providing a space for people to get-together.

READ MORE: New life in ‘good old country’ store

“We already have fantastic burgers and I would like to introduce more sit-down meals, but we’re holding off just now because of the limitations.

“We do pizza Friday and Saturday nights and that gives our locals a social venue because we’re licensed.

Debra and Alan Wallis are rearing to breathe new life into their Ma Ma Creek Store.
Debra and Alan Wallis are rearing to breathe new life into their Ma Ma Creek Store.

“On the weekend people can have a glass of wine and a beer, coffee or juices. There’s the standard cafe-type fare and something more relaxing if they want.”

COVID-19 had altered some of the milk bar plans, Ms Wallis said, but once people were allowed back out in larger numbers she would continue to develop the business.

“Before coronavirus, on the weekends, we were getting people out the front having a breakfast with their coffee, or lunch time with fish and chips and a bottle of wine. It was a really relaxed atmosphere.

“Against us just now is the restrictions on table numbers, and it’s cold!

“We’re trying to meld the requirements with licensing, the health department and government.

“It’s a tricky thing to blend everything at the moment but we think we’re winning.”

Ms Wallis said the Ma Ma Creek Milk Bar was a hub for the 136 people who live in Ma Ma Creek and the 400 people in the district.

READ MORE: Watering hole draws locals with pizzas, pints and pinot

“Everybody loves coming here. On Friday and Saturday nights people come in and sit out the front and have a couple of drinks because they see someone they knew, and then they take their pizzas home.

“It gives them something to do with no pressure.”

This week she said, four sulkies and horses stopped by as their owners took a break.

“It happens quite regularly because the locals are training their horses for shows.

“It’s an amazing little community and they’ve been so supportive of us – it’s been brilliant.”

On July 1, free slices of cake will be given away with every purchase and free entry will be given into a raffle to win a four-pack of Ma Ma Creek Coke stubbies.

Articles contributed by Louise Shannon were supported by the Judith Neilson Institute of Journalism and Ideas


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