Blainey Woodham

Cooly wants rock-solid deal

AN ORGANISER for a southern Gold Coast festival is seeking a multi-year deal for State Government funding.

Cooly Rocks On chairwoman Gail O'Neill said the figures from this year's rock 'n' roll festival, which were released earlier this week, delivered a strong argument for a multi-year funding deal from the Queensland Government. To date State Government funding has been delivered on a year-to-year basis.

"I wasn't surprised by the visitor numbers," Ms O'Neill said. "I was surprised by how much money the visitors spent."

Ms O'Neill said despite the rain, crowd numbers were up on last year's event largely because of the interstate numbers.

The organisers recorded 60,840 visitors to the festival, up from 49,413 in 2011. "When the rain came down we still had the numbers because there were visitors who came here specifically for the festival," she said. The event is also increasing its international appeal with a surge in overseas travellers visiting Coolangatta during the festival. Commissioned research carried out during the Coolangatta and Tweed-based festival showed the estimated total economic impact of overnight and day visitor expenditure was $29,309,062 - more than $11 million up on last year.

Overall, more tourists made the trip specifically to attend this year's event.

About 20% of festival visitors chose to stay south of the border.



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