Fraser Coast businesses bracing for big weekend
BUSINESSES are ready for their busiest but best weekends of the year as Fraser Coast's biggest sport event beckons.
The Queensland Touch Junior State Cup, which attracts about 3500 footballers and their families to Hervey Bay, kicks off today while the Maryborough Music Conference is in full swing at the Brolga Theatre.
Fraser Coast mayor Gerard O'Connell said the events would inject between $2 million and $4 million to the economy, and businesses would be the biggest winners.
Xpresso Mobile Coffee was the first mobile coffee shop to operate at the Junior State Cup, and owner Lynda Eadie said the weekend doubled as her biggest trading days of the year.
"It's probably equivalent to two to three regular weeks," she said.
"It is that busy on the weekend we have to organise a rotating roster."
Xpresso is one of four coffee vans trading at the event, and a mobile Boost Juice outlet will also capitalise on the carnival.
Mr O'Connell said the benefits rippled through the whole economy, as visitors booked almost every available spare room.
"They stay a few nights here so you're looking at a few hundred to thousands of dollars, then you add food, shopping and other activities," he said.
"When you add all of that up you're talking about millions of dollars for local businesses."
Hervey Bay Chamber of Commerce president Tim Powers said the hospitality industry was a major winner.
"The Junior State Cup certainly gives a boost to local businesses," he said.
"I wouldn't say it is overlooked but the experience people glean from this carnival and their time here, they look at Hervey Bay as somewhere to return during the Christmas holidays or other times."