Preliminary statistics have shown a 30 per cent increase in interstate visitation ahead of this weekend’s Barossa Gourmet Weekend.
While there was no firm explanation for the incredible growth (in comparison to 2016 figures), organisers attributed the rise to both the Be Consumed event in Melbourne last month and a targeted campaign in the eastern states.
Whatever the reason, it’s all good news for the region.
“Interstate visitation creates additional economic benefit to the region through bedstays and expenditure beyond the BGW program,” festival director Andrew Dundon said.
Alongside the good selection of ‘free’ events on the Gourmet Trail – always a popular fixture – ticketed events had enjoyed steady sales which were expected to continue right through to the weekend.
“Quite a few ticketed events are either sold out or on the verge of selling out, but there’s still plenty of great opportunities and experiences,” Mr Dundon said.
“This year we’ve seen an increase in ticketed events with a real focus on Barossa produce, and the Gourmet Trail events are always hugely popular for visitors and locals.”
And with Father’s Day also on Sunday, Mr Dundon encouraged locals to soak up the atmosphere of Gourmet Weekend and in particular the Father’s Day events which made it easy to treat Dad, especially those on the Gourmet Trail.
“Why not start the day early and head out for a big breakfast cooked by Baz at Gomersal Wines, let the kids run around while Dad enjoys a hearty feed and glass of wine – plus there’s the added bonus at Gomersal that if you book for Father’s Day breakfast, they’ll throw in a bottle of wine,” he said.
“Or maybe If You’re Game at Lyndoch Hill, complete with early morning cocktails, is more Dad’s thing.
“Gibsons is another great option and promises a sumptuous brekky with great music and wine.
“There’s plenty of options to make Dad’s day pretty special.”
And when he’s not ironing out last minute logistics and planning issues, Mr Dundon hoped to enjoy some of the events himself.
“I’m looking forward to Young and The Restless and getting to sample some new wines, then on Sunday I’ll be at the Adelaide Crows breakfast (at Seppeltsfield) with my Dad.”