AIRLIE Beach was alive and buzzing on the weekend with the Great Barrier Reef Festival kicking off the traditional events season.
The main street was a hive of activity with car show, parade and carnival bringing hordes of people not just into town but into the region.
The benefits that events bring to the region cannot be underestimated.
Firstly, there is the obvious, immediate financial impact that drawing people to the area brings – people in town will spend money.
Accommodation suppliers, food and beverage, retail and tour operators all benefit – as do their suppliers and support industries.
The exposure the area receives through direct marketing, social media and word-of-mouth from these events is incalculable and, arguably, results in future visitation for longer periods.
Even more extraordinary is that almost without fail, the many events that the region hosts are organised, manned and run by volunteers.
We are fortunate that we have an abundance of residents so willing to give generously of their time.
The region genuinely owes you a huge debt. You are all wonderful ambassadors for the Whitsunday community.
And, just in case you missed it – the Mayoral election is on Saturday, August 13. Pre-poll is available if you can’t make it on Saturday.
The next few years will be even more challenging than the past. We are once again heading into unknown financial and social issues.
We need a leader to guide the region as a whole – ensuring we build on the strengths of our diversity.
Much has been said about how to vote or not vote. It is up to you. However, the only way that the most preferred candidate across the region will win, is for you to fill every box in the order of your preference.
Following on from our recent ‘Meet the Candidates’ forum, our next event is simple and relaxed – Business and Booze – at the VMR, on Thursday, August 11, from 6pm. Come and join us for a quiet drink and a chat.