Whitsunday Times - - WHITSUNDAY VIEWS -

THE Whit­sun­days has en­dured a hor­ror 3 years that have in­cluded cy­clones, floods, eco­nomic in­sta­bil­ity, a coun­cil in a fi­nan­cial mess, our main street be­ing dug up, loss of key lo­cal busi­nesses and be­cause of the down­turn in the re­sources sec­tor – many lo­cals los­ing their jobs as well as many oth­ers.

On top of all that we have seen a long stand­ing state La­bor govern­ment an­ni­hi­lated in the Queens­land elec­tion and don’t even start me on the non­sense we have all been sub­jected to from Can­berra – soon to be over thank good­ness.... I hope.

All of this puts a sig­nif­i­cant strain on the fi­nan­cial vi­a­bil­ity of many busi­nesses – small and large. This in turn also places sig­nif­i­cant pres­sure on many fam­i­lies who are hav­ing a ter­ri­bly tough time.

So, it was with gen­uine plea­sure and per­haps a cer­tain level of re­lief that I saw and ex­pe­ri­enced such a suc­cess­ful Reef Fes­ti­val. The town on the Fri­day night was heav­ing, it was great to see. With the near com­ple­tion of the main street too, I came away feel­ing that the town is about to turn the cor­ner, I sensed peo­ple were start­ing to feel op­ti­mistic again.

That said I must con­fess I was a lit­tle be­mused that a num­ber of shops down the main street were closed that night?

But the pur­pose of my let­ter is to con­grat­u­late the Reef Fes­ti­val com­mit­tee, or­gan­is­ers and other vol­un­teers. Many of th­ese peo­ple run their own busi­nesses and to ded­i­cate so much time to this com­mu­nity event, one that ap­pears to have lifted so many spir­its, is a credit to them all.

So whilst we are not com­pletely out of the woods yet the Reef Fes­ti­val has made a sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tion to bring­ing some pride and op­ti­mism back to the town, so well done to you all. Jim Sherrington CANNONVALE

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