New events to reel in tourists to Cairns
ATTRACTING new events to the Far North have been identified as crucial and a priority by new Tourism and Events Queensland chief executive Steven Wright and board chairman Stephen Gregg.
The pair were involved in a day-long top level strategic planning meeting with key Tourism Tropical North Queensland, Tourism and Events Queensland and Tourism Australia personnel in Cairns yesterday.
Events were at the centre of the talks, particularly to fill empty hotel rooms during the off season during the Far North's wet.
Mr Wright said TEQ was working with TTNQ and others on new events to bring to the region, focussed around the marketing brand.
"The adventurous by nature brand fits very well for events," he said.
He said TEQ wanted to establish a portfolio of events with all stakeholders.
Mr Wright said events attracted visitors, which was why it was important they were developed and marketed together.
Mr Gregg, who was one of the masterminds behind the week-long Cairns Adventure Festival and Triathlon in June, said the festival could run longer and bring more people with extra events both before and after.
He said the triathlon attracted people before and after because the region was recognised as being a family destination so the athletes brought their families for a holiday as well as competing.
Mr Gregg said more events would reduce the economies of scale and make them cheaper and easier to run with all the relevant infrastructure and skilled people in place, something the Gold Coast had already achieved.
He said the Far North needed to establish a reputation as being "event-friendly" for organisers.
Mr Gregg said the eclipse was an event the entire community backed.
He said all organisations, including TQ, Events Queensland, TTNQ, Advance Cairns and the Cairns Regional Council, worked well together to make it a success.
"We ended up with a really good result which showcased the destination which we can use to attract other events," he said.
Mr Wright said the event put the world spotlight on the region.
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Pushing events tourism: New Tourism and Events Queensland chief executive officer Steven Wright and board chairman Stephen Gregg.