Echuca's Southern 80 brings in the dollars.

     
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Echuca’s Club Marine Southern 80 ski race is known as the toughest water ski race in the world. The gruelling event attracts the best of Australian and overseas water ski racers and this year was  certainly no exception.

Racers vie for the prestigious superclass title as they traverse 80kms of the Murray Rivers twisting and turning course. Over 50,000 people attend the event each year, making it one of the biggest outings on the Shire of Campaspe calendar.

It is estimated this year the event contributed over $24.8 million to the towns economy. Pubs, resturants, motels and hotels are overflowing with visitors and the streets are jammed with people checking out all the attraction Echuca has to offer. 

Strategy portfolio holder councillor Judith O’Farrell said the event is a wonderful spectacle with magnificent speed boats and precision skiers.

“The diverse range of entertainment on offer is also a major drawcard for the 50,000 strong crowd who attend this event,” Cr O’Farrell said.

“In addition to the race the three day event includes breakfast with the stars, a launch night at Victoria Park, Total Tools static display in Hare Street, Beechworth Bakery Bakers Blitz and the presidents invitational to 40.”

A survey conducted by the shire gathered data on the demographics including age, gender and postcard of visitors as well as accommodation details and money spent.

Of those surveyed 71 per cent came from outside of the Campaspe and Murray Shire’s, 52 per cent ate out, 41 per cent went shopping and the average stay was 2.9 nights. Non locals spent on average $653.90 per person while locals spent $113.39.

“This information helps us to create a profile of how the event has contributed to the local economy and also helps community d\groups in the development of their event and marketing plans, providing guidance on what works and what doesn’t work.”

Family groups are the most popular travelling group to attend and over a quarter of those surveyed this year were new patrons and 83.5 per cent of them said they would return again next year.

 

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