Australia urged to embrace its iconic ‘big things’
Among Australia’s many ‘big things’, The Big Banana at Coffs Harbour is perhaps the most famous of all, and a former Coffs Harbour resident and adjunct Southern Cross University professor has a simple message for local residents - embrace your big thing.
Now resident in Finland, Professor Johan Edelheim has recently returned to Australia to launch his book, Tourist Attractions: From Objective to Narrative.
Featuring The Big Banana on the cover, Professor Edelheim explains “the book is loosely based on my PhD thesis, The Big Bushranger and The Big Banana, and analyses the experiences of two different tourist centres - Uralla and Coffs Harbour.
"Uralla is home of Captain Thunderbolt and is a place that's embraced bushranger tourism and Australian heritage.
“On the flipside, there's Coffs Harbour and The Big Banana, which is a bit retro and kitsch."
Professor Edelheim’s book examines how tourist attractions draw crowds, how they are perceived, and their wider cultural significance.
He states “The Big Banana is really, really famous for tourists but it's a bit of an embarrassment for the locals.
"This is sad because to a large extent The Big Banana is Coffs Harbour's identity and if the locals would learn to laugh with tourists rather than think the tourists are laughing at them it would be so good.
"There's a lot of agriculture in the region and from a tourism perspective they're not taking advantage of this.
"Locals should be having a bit of fun with the banana and capitalise on its kitsch. There's a lot of money to be made in the retro market."
Professor Edelheim explains that one of the key aspects of his book was on regional identity and the role of visitor attractions, stating “it seems like Coffs Harbour is constantly trying to reinvent itself to be anything but the Big Banana when in reality they need to embrace it and capitalise on it."
"It is a joke, it's a huge concrete structure and just like so many other jokes we need to understand how fun it is for others."
"The fun of the banana is never embraced."
14th August 2015 - CONSTRUCTION COMMENCES AT THE BIG BANANA WATERPARK
22nd June 2015 - BIG PINEAPPLE MUSIC FESTIVAL CO-EXISTS WITH QUEENSLAND ZOO ANIMALS
8th April 2015 - BOGAN SHIRE COUNCIL PROPOSES ‘BIG BOGAN’ STATUE TO BOOST TOURISM
17th July 2012 - SURVEY REVEALS AUSTRALIA’S FAVOURITE ‘BIG THINGS’
15th July 2009 - CELEBRATING BIG THINGS
Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?
The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.
However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.
Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.
Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.
Click here to subscribe.
The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.
Commercial Aquatics Australia provides aquatic solutions nationwide and is one of the largest and most experienced companies specialising in the design, construction, renovation, service, maintenance…read more
Gladstone Health & Leisure (Gladstone MRM Pty Ltd Australia) is a leading supplier of leisure management and fitness software and is endorsed by leading health and fitness professionals and…read more
Welcome to The Pool Enclosure Company (TPEC). We provide a large range of premium commercial and residential retractable swimming pool, spa and terrace enclosures throughout Australia, servicing…read more
A leading designer and manufacturer of innovative waterslides and attractions, Australian Waterslides and Leisure (AWL) is also able to advise clients in the areas of concept and design, feasibility…read more
Aflex Inflatables are the leaders for obstacle courses, pool toys, waterparks and land-based watersides and fitness runs. They are industry leaders offering the widest range of pool, lake and beach…read more
Developed in Europe, this innovative system offers a safety management solution for swimming pools that checks individual swimmers via their wristband - monitoring their depth and time. Sensors…read more
Summit Fitness Equipment is now part of NovoFit - see www.ausleisure.com.au/suppliers/novofit/read more
get listed with our suppliers directory
Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!