Plenty of op­por­tu­nity

Whitsunday Times - - WHITSUNDAY NEWS AND VIEWS -

AS A reg­u­lar vis­i­tor to the Whit­sun­days who sub­scribes to the Whit­sun­day Times from Syd­ney, I felt com­pelled to com­ment on two sto­ries in last week’s edi­tion.

I am a prop­erty owner in Air­lie Beach and my next trip will my 37th in 13 years.

My wife and I love the place and see enor­mous op­por­tu­nity. The life­style and cli­mate are fan­tas­tic, the peo­ple friendly and the nat­u­ral beauty just out­stand­ing.

But there’s so much more that could and must be done to put Air­lie firmly on the map for both in­ter­na­tional and Aus­tralian tourists for the decades ahead.

The new main street is great, but it just the start. The main beach has to be a beau­ti­ful white sand beach 24/7 - and turn­ing Air­lie's cur­rent "beach" into a world class as­set would be rel­a­tively easy to achieve.

Hav­ing hun­dreds of beach go­ers on that new beach ev­ery day would do won­ders for ev­ery busi­ness on The Es­planade too. And there's noth­ing wrong with that.

Now to the two sto­ries that made me write to the Ed­i­tor. It is great to see Abell Point get­ting a much needed makeover but I'm dis­ap­pointed that the 'mud pond' is go­ing to be a car park.

That lo­ca­tion screams out that it’s much more wor­thy of some­thing spe­cial.

In your let­ters sec­tion San­dra Flisk refers to com­ments by Rachael Klis­chter - ap­par­ently Rachael and TEQ want to re­po­si­tion your town.

Please don't let that hap­pen. On my first visit in 2000, I com­mented that the place was like the 'foun­tain of youth' - purely be­cause you had thou­sands of young back­pack­ers en­joy­ing ev­ery­thing Air­lie Beach and the Whit­sun­days has to of­fer.

By all means - chase the more ma­ture tourists (the money) but not at the ex­pense of the back­pack­ers. It's this lat­ter group who bring life to the place and use so­cial me­dia to tell the world about what they like and don't like, where they've been and what a great time they had.

Can you imag­ine the la­goon if it was full of 50-75 year olds? Or Mag­nums? Down Un­der Bar or Mama Africa? Scary thought.

So­cial me­dia is king th­ese days whether you like it or not: em­brace the pro­lific users and they'll em­brace and trans­form your great town. By the way I'm a 59 year old baby boomer.

Kevin Lee SYD­NEY

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.