Big Banana shrugs off fire and declares business as usual
OUR iconic Big Banana is in full operation despite the Australia Day fire that destroyed a building on the 45-acre site.
So important is the historic landmark to NSW tourism and the Coffs Coast that even the state's politicians are calling on locals and visitors to pop into the Big Banana to show their support.
In January, the Big Banana received about 150,000 visitors - many of them international tourists - and the business is such an important asset to the local economy that during the holiday period it provides up to 90 full-time and part-time jobs.
NSW Labor's Shadow Minister for the North Coast, Walt Secord, said he had spoken to the operators and they want to assure the community that it's business as usual.
"The gift shop, cafe, ice rink, toboggan, laser tag arena, theatre, candy kitchen and water park as well as the Big Banana itself are all open for customers," he said.
"The best way to show support for the Mid-North Coast tourist sector is to pop into the Big Banana and spend a few dollars.
"The Big Banana has brought a smile to thousands of Australians and a photograph of the Big Banana is proudly displayed on even more refrigerators across the nation and around the world."