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Chamber Chat - Thursday August 8, 2019

Now that’s what Airlie Beach is all about! What an absolutely fabulous weekend. The Reef Festival certainly kicked off the events season with a bang and a huge crowd turned up for the festivities and fireworks on the Friday night and seemed to stay all weekend. 
The main street was packed all day Saturday with a fantastic display of community participation in the street parade. Airlie Beach and The foreshore looked amazing and hosted the music, carnival rides, bars, eat street and night markets in a unique and magical way.
It was heartening to see such a positive buzz in town with locals and visitors alike enjoying the evening. Congratulations to all involved – you really put on a show that highlighted Airlie Beach at its best – a fun town for everyone. Huge thanks to all the volunteers who work tirelessly behind the scenes and the sponsors who help make it all happen. 
A great start to what will be a solid season. There is plenty more to come with Airlie Beach Race Week next week, Hamilton Island Race Week, Airlie Beach Triathlon and Run the Great Whitsunday Trail just a few of the great events bringing people to town.
No such thanks from Small Business to the Queensland Government for coming up with a proposal to make Christmas Eve a half-day Public Holiday. What a confusing mess! Chambers oppose the idea because:
  • It will force small business owners to work Christmas Eve instead of paying staff to work.
  • Workers who want to work on Christmas Eve will miss out on shifts because it will be too expensive for their employers to pay them, so employers may choose to close rather than trade
  • It will cost Queensland businesses up to $137 million!
 
This will have a direct negative impact on nearly every business in Airlie Beach and I urge all business owners to fill out the following CCIQ survey aimed at trying to stop the proposal. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/XmasPublicHoliday  
Speaking of surveys, the Airlie Beach Main Street survey will be released this week. I do apologise for the delay, keep an eye on your inbox for the link. This survey is predominantly for small businesses in the Main Street of Airlie Beach to see which strategies and proposals should be pursued to improve the amenity and user friendliness of Airlie Beach with the ultimate aim of increasing visitation by both tourists and locals.  
There has been a lot more talk about parking on social media again this week. As business owners, residents and rate payers, we are very supportive of expanding the free parking in Airlie Beach, and once confirmed by the survey results, our proposal will include a mix of 2 and 4-hour free parking together with a residents’ rate for longer term parking. Something for everyone !
The Chamber’s AGM is due to be held on Thursday, August 22, at Mantra Club Croc at 7am. It is not too late to nominate for the committee so please contact the Chamber if you would like a nomination form sent out. Members have to be financial to vote at the AGM. 
If you are not already a member, please check out our website where you can sign up online  www.whitsundaycoastchamber.com.au 


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