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Share your ideas on Harcourt

Ideas-a-thon promotion - share your ideas about Harcourt

Monday 6 May 2019

Come along and share your ideas about ways to stimulate the Harcourt economy at a community ideas-a-thon session on Saturday 25 May.

Everyone in town is invited to compete in teams to generate brilliant ideas for the future of Harcourt, with prizes going to those with the best ideas.

This event is part of Shine Harcourt, a project designed to create jobs, drive economic growth and build stronger regional communities. It is supported through the Federal Government’s Building Better Regions program.

Shine Harcourt is being facilitated by Melbourne based creative urban strategists Hello City, who have delivered various identity shaping, branding and revitalisation projects from inner city suburbs to small towns, regional centres and cities. Hello City are specialists at working with communities to understand the levers and barriers to success, and what it will take to allow them to really shine.

Built on the backbone of the apple and granite industries, Harcourt faces unprecedented growth in the next 15 years, from a current population of 943 people to potentially four times that size.

Mount Alexander Shire Mayor Bronwen Machin said Shine Harcourt will build on the region’s identity, drive economic growth, and promote community participation and volunteerism.

“Harcourt is a significant place with a remarkable community. Shine Harcourt will allow us to work with the community in an innovative way,” said Mayor Machin.

“The project will build on the work already done through Plan Harcourt, and engage the community to harness the ideas, experience and skills of anyone who wants to participate in supporting the sustainable growth of this town.”

The project has been designed and will be delivered by the Shine Harcourt partnership – a group of community business leaders, residents, creative people and state and local government representatives. Input is welcome from anyone interested in having a say.

The project starts with the 25 May ideas-a-thon from 5.30pm, when teams compete with their ideas about stimulating the local economy. The most viable ideas and their team representatives then go to the next project stage at an invitation-only Lab Day on Friday 31 May. Participants will join local representatives and experts to workshop the ideas with their collective knowledge and determine a strategic approach for the town.

Cr Machin said the project takes into account the larger Plan Harcourt land use project Council started last year, including community input received during the public consultation period.

“Where Plan Harcourt is broad and long-term in its focus, Shine Harcourt is about Council getting together with the community to inspire the community to stimulate the economy and prepare for the growth of the town,” Cr Machin said.

Shine Harcourt had already received some great ideas through Plan Harcourt and the partnership including:
● Farm gate bicycle tours to orchards, wineries/cideries, organic gardens and local eateries
● Outdoor concerts/cinema in the Oaks Forest
● A lost trades shop/workshop
● Culture support bank to help start up creatives such as sculptors, artists and makers
● Local walking trails, including an enchanted garden space
● Pop-up seasonal glamping
● Opportunities for visitors to learn about the history and stories of the local Dja Dja Wurrung people.

Community members are getting excited about Shine Harcourt which began its public reveal at the recent Harcourt Twilight Markets.

Donna McMahon owner-operator of Harcourt’s Goldfields Track Cafe said she is pleased that Council is focussing on efforts to stimulate the local economy.

“As a small business operator, I know that any effort to grow our economy will be of benefit to everyone. Residents, visitors, business operators - we all gain from growing Harcourt’s economy,” said Ms McMahon.

“We need ideas that will help put Harcourt on the map. I hope lots of people will come along on Saturday 25 May to share their ideas and help make Harcourt shine!”

The ideas-a-thon starts from 5.30pm on Saturday 25 May at the Harcourt Bowling Club. Enjoy free refreshments, cabaret and friendly competition.

To sign up for email updates on Shine Harcourt go to bit.ly/SubscribetoShine.

Event details
What: Family friendly Shine Harcourt ideas-a-thon
When: Register from 5.00pm, competition starts at 6.00pm on Saturday 25 May
Where: Harcourt Bowling Club.
Cost: Free! Refreshments provided.


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