Classic Yass was another great weekend for the Yass Valley.
It provided great family entertainment and created wonderful memories for many.
It allowed local artists and artisans the chance to share their work with the community.
Best of all, it brought visitors to our region and, with them, extra dollars into our local businesses and charities.
This time last year, I suggested Yass Valley Council should look at employing a Classic Yass coordinator. This suggestion was also made to council by Classic Yass organisers Kim Turner and Kim Nelson earlier this year.
Unfortunately, in my opinion, the suggestion has not been acted upon.
The same people who did most of the organising in 2010 and 2011 did it all again for 2012.
They did a brilliant job and deserve to be congratulated for bringing it all together with such a great community spirit.
But we need to look at the longevity of this event and plan not one year out or even two, but look at where we would like this event to be for the long term.
I believe it has the potential to be a regular regional event that people mark in their calendars every year and travel long distances to – like the Young Cherry Festival or even Floriade.
There is enough going on here to make it that special, and for it to continue to grow.
But without a coordinator – even on a part-time basis for, say, six months of the year – the longevity of Classic Yass will be in doubt.
Because the same organisers will not necessarily be available to put in all these unpaid hours year after year.
A great deal happens in the Yass Valley on the backs of volunteers. We’ve been fortunate that volunteers and goodwill have got us this far with Classic Yass, and it will continue to run largely on volunteer effort because that’s the way things like this work.
Still, money spent on a properly qualified person to oversee the coordination, combined publicity and direction of this event would be well invested.
I believe it would give Classic Yass the boost it needs to continue to improve and become a leading regional tourism event.