Cultural diversity injects vibrancy into Victoria’s fifth largest town
STORY:THE SPLENDID WORD PHOTOGRAPHY:VISIT VICTORIA
There’s something special about a town where a river runs through it, and Shepparton – in the heart of Victoria’s Goulburn Valley – has that magnetic appeal.
Less than a two hour drive north-east of Melbourne, Shepparton rests on the banks of the free-flowing and expansive Goulburn River.
Its First Nations people, the Yorta Yorta, were river-based clans who relied on it for hunting, gathering and as a spiritual life force.
Water is still central to the Shepparton community today, where the townsfolk love to fish and play on the surrounding tributaries. The centrally located Victoria Park Lake backs onto the Goulburn and is a mecca for visitors and locals keen to stretch their legs. It’s simply gorgeous and the best place in town for walking, cycling, picnics, fishing, bird watching and slowing down for much-needed time in nature.
Early settlers to Shepparton established its reputation as the food bowl of Australia and its prowess as a fruit-growing powerhouse continues today. Locally grown, fresh produce is prized in these parts, where you’ll eat some of the country’s best stone fruit, cherries, apples, pears, grapes, olives and tomatoes.
Food is important in this growing, multicultural regional city that still holds a small town sensibility and a strong community vibe. It’s a place where the locals are friendly and all are welcome. Sport is also a strong connector here, as is community and volunteer involvement underpinned by a vibrant education sector, including a national university and TAFE presence.
Nature is central to life in Shepparton. An abundance of local flora and fauna inhabit an expansive network of wetlands including Cussen Park in Tatura, Gemmills Swamp in Mooroopna and Reedy Swamp in town. Nature lovers can explore stunning displays of natives at the seven-hectare Australian Botanic Gardens and the impressive stand of River Red Gums at Shepparton’s Lower Goulburn National Park.
“Early settlers to Shepparton established its reputation as the food bowl of Australia and its prowess as a fruit-growing powerhouse continues today.”
Shepparton has a proud reputation as a melting pot of cultural influence with some of the best international culinary fare outside of Melbourne.
Italian, African, Middle Eastern, Asian and modern-Australian fine dining are all on offer here, where coffee culture is also a mainstay. Cafes, restaurants and bars are plentiful and popular.
A shining light for arts across the region, the recently renovated Shepparton Art Museum (SAM) holds the most significant collection of historic and contemporary Australian ceramics in regional Australia, including a growing collection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art. A must see for art appreciators.
Lovers of art will also relish the Moooving Art ever-changing public art exhibition of life-sized cows that is hard to miss across the city! This collection of fiberglass cows scattered throughout Shepparton and surrounding towns is brought to life through colour and personality. There’s more than 90 cows on display, so good luck finding them all!
When it comes to arts and culture the Shepparton Festival is the jewel in the crown, offering an array of unique activities each March that celebrate the people and places from across the Greater Shepparton region.
Not forgetting the kids, the annual Kidsfest – one of Victoria’s largest children’s festivals – is held in March/April at Australia’s largest adventure playground, KidsTown and offers a huge line-up of entertainment and educational activities for little ones.
Kids and adults alike will love the multicultural gathering at Converge on the Goulburn. Held annually in March, at stunning Victoria Park Lake, this unique event is a celebration of Indigenous and multicultural communities featuring music, dance, authentic and cultural food and activities.
Every neighbourhood in Shepparton is close to what makes this town tick and its vibrant population of more than 31,000 is young at heart with growing families and active community hubs. The median house price ranges from $225,000 to $399,000 and offers everything from brand new estates with lake views to semi rural lifestyle properties with access to all amenities.
Following recent, significant government investment in health, industry, infrastructure and lifestyle, with all the associated spin-off benefits to local business, centrally located and spacious town blocks close to hospitals, schools and shops are much sought after.
The Traditional Custodians of the land on which Greater Shepparton stands are the Yorta Yorta, Bangerang, Kalitheban, Wollithiga, Moira, Ulupna, Kwat Kwat, Yalaba Yalaba and Nguaria-iiliam-wurrung people.
WATTLE ROAD 🖤 Wonderful weather – yes, it really does have more sunny days than Queensland – scenic surrounds, great food and affordable property.
DISTANCE FROM MELBOURNE: 180km
POPULATION: 65,000. Shepparton is the fifth largest city in Victoria.
WHO LIVES HERE?
According to the 2016 Census:
♦ The median age of people in Shepparton was 43 years. Children aged 0 – 14 years made up 18.8% of the population and people aged 65 years and over made up 20.7%
♦ Of the families in Shepparton 40.0% were couple families with children, 42.5% were couple families without children and 16.3% were one parent families.
♦ 79.6% of people were born in Australia. The most common countries of birth are England 1.6%, New Zealand 1.2%, India 1.1%, Italy 0.9% and Afghanistan 0.6%.
♦ The most common occupations included managers 16.3%, labourers 15.0%, professionals 14.9%, technicians and trades workers 14.0%, and clerical and administrative workers 10.7%.
CLIMATE: The climate is warm and temperate.
January average temperatures, max 30.1ºC and min 14.9ºC. July average temperatures, max 12.8ºC and min 3.3ºC. Annual rainfall of 537mm (21 inches)
MAJOR EMPLOYERS: Shepparton is home to several multinational and iconic companies – Campbell’s Soups, SPC, Tatura Milk Industries, Unilever, Visy, Pental Soaps and Pactum Dairy. Other major employers include GV Health, GOTAFE, Goulburn Valley Water, Goulburn-Murray Water, and Greater Shepparton City Council
SCHOOLS: In Shepparton/Mooroopna, there are 30 government primary schools (P-6), one government specialist school (P-12), and four government secondary schools (Yr 7-12). In the non-government sector there are seven non-government primary schools (P-6), one non-government Yr 5-6 school, four non-government secondary schools (Yr 7-12) and one non-government Prep-Yr 8 school.
HEALTH CARE: Shepparton has two hospitals, Goulburn Valley Health and Shepparton Private Hospital. GV Health runs a broad range of services including the Peter Copulos Cancer and Wellness Centre, CASA – a centre against sexual assault, a free alcohol and drug service for adults 16 years and older, a diabetes centre, imaging and Aboriginal health. It also provides an innovate range of mental health services for people requiring short and long-term support and care.
NBN CONNECTION: Fibre To The Premises (FTTP)
PROPERTY PRICES: The median sale price of houses is $284,875. For units, it is $250,000.
SPORT AND RECREATION: football, cricket, netball, skate parks, playgrounds, reserves, botanic gardens, hockey, athletics, velodrome, soccer, basketball, BMX tracks, cycling trails, bike jumps, indoor pool & splash park (Aquamoves), outdoor pools, cinema, ten pin bowls, trampoline parks, KidsTown and bushwalking.
ARTS AND CULTURE: Shepparton Art Museum, Moooving Art Cows, Australian Botanic Gardens, Riverlinks, Shepparton Festival, Shepparton Heritage Centre Museum, Kaiela Arts.
COUNCIL: greatershepparton.com.au visitshepparton.com.au
Store Manager – Shepparton Flight Centre
“I’ve lived and worked in Shepparton most of my life, and while I travel the world extensively with my work, I love calling this place home.
Shep (as we locals call it) is a fantastic regional town situated on the stunning Goulburn River. Our climate is beautiful (with more sunny days than Queensland), our lifestyle is calm and relaxed, everything you need is in close proximity and there’s no such thing as peak hour traffic!
Housing is affordable, we have an extensive range of great quality education offerings, and we are the food bowl of Victoria, producing around 25 percent of the state’s fruit.
Shepparton is renowned for its regionally produced food and wine, which is celebrated and showcased at our many festivals, exhibitions, farmers markets and multicultural events.
We may be regional in size, but we have all the big facilities you need, and we’re just a stone’s throw from some amazing wineries, the Murray River, the snowfields, the high country and the big smoke.
It’s is a wonderful place to do business, to network and to establish genuine relationships. Our people are kind, caring and passionate.
I love meeting up with friends for a walk, for a yummy breakfast, or for a locally produced wine at one of our restaurants, cafes or wineries.
And best of all, we love raising our kids here, knowing that they’re having fun in a safe community where everyone looks out for one another. Our estate is like one big caravan park where the kids can ride their bikes to anyone’s house, and spend their free time together building jumps, riding the BMX tracks, swimming and exploring the natural world around them.”
Travel time is approximately 60 minutes.
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Lot 149 Windsor Park Estate, Shepparton
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111 Maude Street, Shepparton
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34 Balaclava Road, Shepparton
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15 Ayrshire Way, Shepparton
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