After being postponed because of the outbreak of the Delta COVID-19 strain across Queensland earlier this month, the Ekka Show Holiday will now be moved to October.
Set to pump $130 million into Queensland’s tourism and events industries, the People’s Day Public Holiday (originally scheduled for 11 August) will become the People’s Long Weekend, falling on Friday 29 October.
The long-weekend will give three major South East Queensland council regions and their combined 1.8 million residents the opportunity to relax after grappling with lockdowns and restrictions.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the People’s Long Weekend would give ‘thousands of Queenslanders a chance to explore their own state’.
“Our tourism industry has done it tough this year. The delta variant has had an impact on our economy and with less support from the Morrison Government, many businesses are struggling more than ever.
“I’m urging Queenslanders to use the People’s Long Weekend to support local businesses and local jobs. Please holiday at home on October 29.”
The Palaszczuk government is confident this year’s People’s Long Weekend will inject much-needed support into local businesses.
Last year’s People’s Long Weekend led to a 31 per cent rise in Queenslanders holidaying in their own state, as well as a 62 per cent surge in the amount of money spent by Queenslanders in their own backyard.
Industrial Relations Minister Grace Grace said the government knows ‘first-hand the benefits that carefully selected public holidays can deliver for local businesses’.
“Last year’s People’s Long Weekend had a great impact on Queensland’s economy.
“We’ve consulted closely with tourism operators, stakeholders and businesses and picked October 29 because we believe this date will deliver local businesses the financial boost that they need,” she said.
Whether major event organisers on the Sunshine State will take up the opportunity over the upcoming (and much-needed) long weekend remains to be seen. With no access to insurance in the event of a snap lockdown foiling the long weekend plans, event organisers will be weighing up the financial risks of this new opportunity.
Photo: City of Gold Coast