THE Gympie Muster generates almost $10 million for the local economy each year with $4.8 million directly spent in the region.

A Muster 2020 conference, held in Gympie on Saturday, was the first step in increasing the economic benefit to the community and ensuring the Muster is a viable event for years to come.

Muster 2020 forum spokesperson Craig Mathisen said the workshop demonstrated the enthusiasm everyone had for the event and the benefits the Muster brings to the Gympie region.

He said a group of community-minded people gathered for the first of two conferences to talk about the Muster's future.

"While it was a hot Saturday in Gympie that didn't deter the 40 participants from volunteering their time and putting all their energy into the workshop topics," Mr Mathisen said.

"The diversity of views helped generate new ideas and we all now have some homework to do to prepare for the next workshop".

Five task teams were formed and focused on the program, marketing, logistics, finance and community elements of the event.

Part of the workshop was focused on recent financial performance and the competitive nature of music festivals.

It outlined the need to significantly lift financial returns to remain competitive.

"One of the main objectives of the Muster is to generate a cash surplus, as this provides funds for future development and distribution to charities and community organisations," Mr Mathisen said.

Each workshop participant took on responsibility to develop at least one new idea and bring it back to a second workshop on November 28.

"This process is harnessing the skills, ideas, enthusiasm and passion of participants to help keep the Muster sustainable," he said.

The promotional value for the 2014 Muster on television, radio and newspapers was estimated at $4.9 million across Australia and this helped promote the Gympie region.

Gympie Times


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