Mary Valley open for business
THE Mary Valley economy is feeling the pinch of the ongoing closure of Borumba Dam, compounded by the drought and the Mary Valley Rattler's absence.
Chamber of Commerce president Les Fleet says many people on the land believe the drought is the worst in 40 or more years.
"Our tourism and accommodation-related businesses are also experiencing a decline in trade due to the dam not being available (because of a blue green algal bloom)," he said.
"We would like to remind everyone we are still open for business and there is much more to do in the Mary Valley than just visit Borumba Dam.
"There are picturesque stretches of the Mary River and Yabba Creek to explore by kayak, for example. Fishing is permitted in the rivers and creeks.
"There is also many forest trails available for four-wheel driving, trail and mountain biking, even horse riding."
Mr Fleet said the Imbil and Mary Valley business community had proven in the past just how resilient it was and it would "get through this period as well".
Chamber vice-president Jo Robey said the dam closure was affecting all businesses in Imbil.
Camp grounds, the hardware and the grocery store had a significant reduction in weekend trade. The Borumba Fishing Store was lucky to have one customer a day, she said.
"As a town the shop front stores cater for the local community but also the tourists brought to the area for camping and water recreation activities. The closure of the dam to recreation activities has certainly impacted on tourist business in town. The businesses in Imbil have been reliant on the tourist dollar from water recreation and camping since the Mary Valley Rattler stopped coming..."