REGIONAL EVENTS

I frequently get asked questions as to why Bundaberg Regional Council doesn’t conduct the number of significant events that other regions appear to do. It’s frustrating to try and explain my stance on this issue however tonight I posted the following response to a Facebook inquiry on the subject.

At the same time, it would be remiss of me not to mention the outstanding job that Council’s Events Staff did on this (and previous) years’ Childers Festival. These guys work flat out for months to make this happen with a limited budget and need to be congratulated on yet another successful event.

  •  
    Greg Barnes Hi Suzanne – re your post a couple of hours ago…

    Issy and I started the Coral Coast Turtle Festival with a few others at the same time that we started the ANZAC Day Dawn Service and formed the Chamber of Commerce in 1997 and again in 1998. The festival fell apart when the committee (against our advice) handed it over to a developer who ran up $40,000 in unpaid bills!

    About eighteen months ago I asked Council to support my idea for a major National Festival to be held at Bargara and which had received incredible support from the community organisations that I had discussed it with ie Chamber of Commerce, Progress Association, Lions Club, Men’s Shed, etc. Despite the fact that I had spent 6 months researching the project, the Council wouldn’t release $6,000 to enable me to develop a branding/preliminary marketing strategy so that I could at least present a professional and credible submission to a targeted international company for a nominal $50,000 – $75,000 in sponsorship.

    I understand that this project is now being reconsidered but at this stage nothing has been confirmed and I lament the fact that it could have otherwise been up and running this September (it required at least a year in the planning process).

    Many local residents will also recall that the proposal to establish markets at the northern end of Nielson Park was quashed even though a public survey, conducted by the Council itself, clearly demonstrated majority community support for the proposal. A comment from a community member still rings clear in my ears . “Why would they ask the question if they’re not going to like the answer”. Many others have echoed this sentiment.

    To answer your question Suzanne, my thoughts are quite clear and on the record …. unless we as a region pursue an attitude of vibrancy, progressiveness and are prepared to ‘think outside the square’, we’ll fail to resolve the many and continuous concerns that get posted on this and many other sites on the subject of significant regional events (or the lack thereof).

    Luckily, the former Isis Shire Council had the vision & drive (albeit 19 years ago) to do just that and work through all the obstacles required to close a National Highway so they could establish what is undeniably one of Queensland’s iconic events.
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