Warwick businesses ready for festival cash boost
JUMPERS and Jazz is like Christmas in July for Warwick businesses as they gear up for a retail peak exclusive to the Rose City.
While the festival has provided a $2.5 million cash injection into the town in previous years, members of the community have expressed concerns about its sustainability during the drought.
Stacey Christensen from Duggan's Camera Centre said the festival's economic boost has come at an important time for retailers.
"Retail shops around this area are struggling with the drought and need the money visitors are bringing,” she said.
"Last year it brought a great crowd through the store and we are hoping it will be the same this year.”
Mrs Christensen said she was going the extra mile to take advantage of the extra business while it is here.
"We are going to have a stall at the Warwick Potters Market on the last Sunday selling our custom frame and my daughter Stacey's photography.”
Staff member at Classic Dimensions Lorraine King said yesterday had already brought an increase in customers.
She said the festival brought far-reaching benefits for people all across the Southern Downs.
"Jumpers and Jazz provides a boost for the whole region, from Allora to Stanthorpe, accommodation and cafes everywhere benefit,” Mrs King said.
"A lot of people only come in for a couple of days, they are hardly using much water over that time.”
Lynn Bryson from Bryson's Place Gifts and Flowers said she has been preparing displays specially for the peak season.
She set up an eye-catching Cinco de Mayo display in her store window to grab the attention of curious tourists.
"Mother's Day is like a quick and fierce rush for us, Jumpers and Jazz is a different kind of peak, it is fun for us,” she said.
"I make sure to have something quirky on hand for visitors, something they can't find in big cities.”
Nick Martin, manager of Buffalo Bills clothes retailer, said the festival provided much needed relief for the drought-stricken community.
"We think the festival is great for the town, it gives people a chance to get out and forget about the drought for a few days,”
"To just pull the pin on it would have had an adverse effect on the whole town.”