ACTION APLENTY: The race that stops the nation, including the Whitsundays, will take place on Tuesday.
ACTION APLENTY: The race that stops the nation, including the Whitsundays, will take place on Tuesday. JOE CASTRO

Where to get all the Melbourne Cup excitement

THE race that stops the nation is creating waves in the Whitsundays as local venues prepare special deals and big screens for the event around the region.

Attractions range from deluxe seafood buffets and drink packages to prizes and best dressed competitions - whatever your fancy, catering and entertainment won't fall short.

Aside from a splendid Marina view, Sorrentos will be offering a special package including a degustation menu, complimentary drink on arrival from 11.30 am, live entertainment, sweeps, prizes, a best-dressed competition and TV screens to watch the feature for $109 per person.

Located under lights on Airlie Esplanade, La Tabella has the chef's a la carte menu on offer as well as sweeps, prizes and an air-conditioned wine cellar complete with a TV monitor to catch all the Melbournce Cup action.

Get immersed in the excitement at Reef Gateway as the live race takes place on a cinema screen with sweeps and raffles on the side. Live music and a DJ will provide entertainment along with MC and comedian Mike Bennett.

Full TAB facilities will be open from 8am. The package costs $79 per person including a deluxe seafood buffet, but a three-hour drink package can be added for $49 extra.

Jubilee Tavern is on top of the action with a three-course luncheon, live entertainment, TAB facilities, trivia and a best dressed competition from 11.30am.

The $65 package includes a complimentary drink on arrival.

Bookings are essential with $5 from each ticket sold donated to RACQ CQ Rescue Helicopter.

Magnums will be showing the action on the big screen with live entertainment planned post-race. The venue will be open from 7am for betting purposes.

Mantra Club Croc will show the race on TV monitors.

VENUES

- Sorrentos, from 11.30am, $109pp, degustation menu, drink on arrival, TV, live entertainment, sweeps, prizes and best dressed

- La Tabella, Chef's a la carte menu, sweeps, prizes, TV

- Reef Gateway, $79pp, cinema screen, live entertainment, deluxe seafood buffet, TAB, three-hour drink package for $49 extra

- Jubilee Tavern, $65 per person, three-course luncheon, live entertainment TAB, trivia, TV, best dressed and complimentary drink

- Magnums, race on the big screen, live entertainment, open from 7am for betting purposes

- Mantra Club Croc, race shown on TV



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