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Australian Reptile Park celebrates 60 years

Australian Reptile Park celebrates 60 years
October 5, 2009

The Australian Reptile Park has celebrated its 60th birthday.

The Park, located at Somersby on the NSW Central Coast, was described by NSW Minister for Tourism, Jodi McKay as having a "fantastic history" and playing "a vital role in the State's tourism industry."

As Minister McKay stated "the Reptile Park has twice been named the Best Regional Attraction in Australia and was the NSW winner of the Decade for Best Regional Attraction between 1989 and 1998.

"In 2000, the Reptile Park was devastated by a fire which destroyed its main building and wiped out Australia's largest collection of reptiles, amphibians and spiders.

"But to the credit of park staff and management the Reptile Park survived and reopened just two months later, in time to capitalise on the tourism surge generated by the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games."

NSW Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast David Harris said the Reptile Park features prominently in the Central Coast Regional Tourism Organisations 'Come to the Coast' marketing campaign aimed at attracting Sydneysiders to the region for short getaways.

Harris stated "tourism is vital to the Central Coast economy and the Australian Reptile Park plays a key role in attracting visitors to the region.

"More than 4.1 million domestic and international tourists visited the Central Coast over the last year, spending almost $770 million in the region."

Secretary Harris added that "the Reptile Park has been the sole supplier of snake and funnel-web spider venoms for Australia's anti-venom program for six decades."

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