Expo to be a $1.3m boon for shire
THE Alpine Shire Council has forecast next month’s Wild Deer Hunting, Guiding and Fishing Expo to provide an economic benefit of $1.3million to Myrtleford and the Alpine Shire.
Council, who have assisted with the planning, logistics and promotion of the event believe it will provide exposure to not only Myrtleford but the entire region.
The event will take place across the weekend of March 3-4 and is expected to attract 8000-10,000 people making it among the largest events for the area across the 2017/18 calendar.
Event organiser Pete Costin said the expo was the biggest show of its kind in Asia Pacific and will have close to 500 exhibitors.
“If you can’t buy it there, it doesn’t exist,” he said.
“It’s not market type junk; it is high quality, high tech gear.”
Mr Costin added that the event would be humungous for the economy.
“When it was in Rutherglen one service station ran out of fuel,” he said.
Among the many beneficiaries of the event will be the Myrtleford Football Netball Club and Myrtleford Lions Club who will provide food and drink.
The event, which has been held biennially since 2008, has moved around in recent years for various reasons but Mr Costin believes Myrtleford can become its permanent home.
“If this works we may make this an annual event right here,” he said.
The event originated in the North East with Wodonga and Rutherglen its original hosts before the expo moved to Bendigo in 2012.
“It’s a good spot because it’s basically half way between Melbourne and Sydney,” Mr Costin said.
“Then you have got Shepparton, Benalla, Albury-Wodonga, and it’s not that far from Canberra and Khancoban either.”
Alpine Shire Council economic and community development manager Elaine Burridge said it was absolutely good news that organisers plan on keeping the event in Myrtleford.
“If participation for the first event is expected to be 8000-10,000 people and the economic benefit is expected to reach $1.3million, you assume that as the event grows participation and economic injection will grow also,” she said.
The expo is sure to attract people from a wide range of locations with organisers fielding calls from Perth, Broome and the Northern Territory as well as internationally from New Zealand, North America, Africa and Mongolia.
Set up for the event will begin in the former tobacco co-op building on February 26.