From the editor's desk
IT’S amazing how much you can bond with people in a very short time.
The Clipper fleet was only here for just over a week but, boy, did they make an impression.
The buzz that emanated from the Abell Point Marina was infectious – you couldn’t visit the place and not get involved.
Whether it was through participating in one of the many scheduled events or simply by taking in the view from the bicentennial walkway, there was plenty to draw you in.
I have to confess feeling quite emotional when the Clipper crews slipped their lines on Monday morning and headed out into Pioneer Bay.
Suddenly there were empty berths where previously there had been such a spectacle and all was quiet where there had been so much activity and background noise.
Happily the feeling of emptiness didn’t last very long, soon to be replaced with the excitement of the Parade of Sail.
Despite the weather it was a great send off for the fleet.
Back on dry land and in the aftermath, the feedback has been incredibly positive, from the business people who reaped the financial benefits to the members of the community who shared in a life-changing event.
Airlie Beach owes a debt of gratitude to everyone who worked to bring the Clipper fleet here and all those who worked so hard to make their stay as enjoyable as it was.
Thoughts are already turning to the 2017–18 event and there is a strong possibility the race could come back.
Wouldn’t it be great to have this on the calendar again.