The Christmas and New Year period has seen a boom in tourism for the town of Greater Shepparton, with the visitor center seeing a 275% increase in visitors from last festive season.
Visitor Experience Coordinator Maree Glasson said the increase in visitors to the center has been phenomenal and people are coming to them for a range of activities.
“About half of them (visitors) were here in the compound to visit the art museum,” she said.
“Others were looking for things to see and do, especially families with children, they were very interested in the outdoors…so we were able to direct them to the Botanical Gardens, walking trails, KidsTown, Aquamoves.
“The vehicle evolution museum was also something people were very interested in checking out.”
Mayor of the City of Greater Shepparton Kim O’Keeffe praised center staff for keeping up with the influx of visitors during the peak period.
“The staff and volunteers at the Greater Shepparton Visitor Center have done an incredible job of keeping up with demand throughout the holiday season,” she said.
“The Visitor Center recorded its busiest day on Wednesday December 29, with 273 visitors passing through the door. What an incredible effort.
Overall, 2,140 visitors were recorded at the centre, 80% of them from Greater Melbourne.
Now, in mid-January, the numbers have started to calm down and Ms Glasson said the center is looking to attract new volunteers.
“We’re looking for locals who are truly passionate about where they live, they’re ‘people’ who would genuinely love to share all the great things we have in our city and learn everything they didn’t know about their city “, she said.
“It really is a great place to volunteer because you’re dealing with happy people who are on vacation.”
Gary MacDonald has enjoyed volunteering at the Drop-In Center for 11 years and has encouraged others to get in on the action and join the team.
“Inquire, come in and chat, because we are looking for volunteers,” he said.
“I really found my time here worthwhile because not only do you start to learn more about your own region, but you can also introduce people to your own region.
“It’s just nice to pass that information on.”
For more information or to express your interest in volunteering, visit the cboard website for the visitor center. Applications close Monday, January 31.