Ever wanted to run an ice cream stand in Victoria Park?
With summer approaching, the City of Ballarat is looking for new ideas to get more visitors to Lake Wendouree and Victoria Park.
Suggesting paddle boats, ice cream stands, and hire bikes, council is calling for expressions of interest for "traders with a unique service" to target these areas.
According to a council media release, "local businesses are strongly encouraged to apply".
"Proposals will be evaluated not just on their ability to enhance the quality of the experience for visitors to the area, but also on their capacity to stimulate local economic activity and employment opportunities," it states.
Mayor Daniel Moloney said in a statement it was a "fantastic opportunity" to try something new.
"This beautiful area attracts thousands of visitors every year, but this is an amazing chance to provide some real value-adding to what is already one of our biggest tourist attractions," he said.
"Imagine having colourful paddle boats on the lake or buying an ice-cream during a walk around Victoria Park.
"I would encourage unique service traders from all backgrounds to apply to help us make this naturally dynamic precinct even more attractive to visitors from all demographics."
Expressions of interest close October 8, visit council's website to find out more.
Council has also reiterated its support for businesses affected by ongoing restrictions.
As well as direct support grants from a $1 million fund - some of which are still available, and can be transferred within a week - council reached out to more than 2000 businesses through an online survey, to identify any new concepts and ideas they would like to see shape outdoor dining and trading options.
According to a media release, council will offer access to council-owned outdoor spaces and parks for commercial fitness programs, outdoor trading and dining; consideration of additional wind protection barriers and umbrella sockets for hospitality venues to extend their dining footprint, funded by council; and waiving more fees until June 2022.
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Council chief executive Evan King said in a statement "we don't want to assume we know the answers" about how best to support businesses.
"Our initial focus is on hospitality to understand what we can do now to assist as many people as possible to trade within restrictions. For hospitality, this is primarily about facilitating outdoor dining caps per venue until we reach 70 per cent vaccination," he said.
"We are particularly keen to receive the feedback from the survey so that we can start to plan and implement any strategies and infrastructure that will assist all our sectors to trade to capacity."
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