Clubs and pubs in Redcliffe, Caboolture, North Lakes and Pine Rivers are back in business with thousands of customers returning in the first few days after COVID restrictions eased.
Several clubs unlocked their doors for the first time in months while others opened additional areas, but all agreed it’s been great to welcome back staff and customers.
Redcliffe RSL General Manager Pete Forsey says the reopening, after months in shutdown, had its challenges.
“We were very happy to see everyone back,” he says, “but after more than three months, with equipment closed down and staff off, it was going to take a bit of time to get going again.
“Overall, we were very happy to open again and provide a safe venue for our members. No-one was turned away and we were within the limits of guests and staff.”
Suzy Vercoe, Venue and Culture Manager at Caboolture Sports Club, says thousands of people had been to the club in the first three days.
“It was great to see the club bustling with people showing their support and enjoying themselves,” she says. “More than 5000 came through our doors. It was busy from noon Friday into the weekend.
“We look forward to seeing our patronage continue to grow as we bring back regular promotions, bingo, meal deals, raffles and live entertainment five times a week from Friday.”
Visitors to Club Pine Rivers were given a bonus - their first look at the venue’s latest renovations, says Operations Manager Craig Lauman.
“Member attendance has been overwhelming to say the least,” Craig says. “Seeing the friendly faces from our community enjoying our new club has really lifted the team’s spirit.
“It’s been a tough, long road for all our staff and members while in shutdown. We hope the community enjoys the new club as much as we do.”
Members were queueing outside Redcliffe Leagues Club before it reopened late last week, says General Manager Justin Charlish.
“It was very overwhelming to see the response from so many members of the local community,” says Justin. “Just seeing that line of people outside and applauding them back in.
“We put plenty of effort into the safety side of things with COVID training and we are pretty much fully reopen again.”
Caboolture RSL Marketing Manager Kent Parry says extra signage has been put up about the COVID safe requirements, but the reopening “went well”.
“Everyone expected the restrictions we still had to follow, so it wasn’t too different from anywhere else at the moment,” Kent says.
“We reopened areas, like the bistro, and had extra signage. We had good patronage. A lot were our regulars.”
North Lakes Sports Club Venue and Culture Manager Craig Allen says visitors have had “no problem” following the venue’s rules.
“There was a great atmosphere and it was obvious patrons were happy to get out and support their local club,” he says.
“Patrons enjoyed being able to use their favourite facilities and being able to move freely through the venue. All adhered to the 1.5m distancing rules. We had no issues with our COVID safe plan.”
Troy Young, General Manager at Norths League Club, said the club is back in a position to trade profitably going forward.
“I’m happy to say trade has bounced back to a certain extent,” he said. “food and beverages are down to a certain extent, but we think that’s due to people still be tentative about going out.
“The stage 3 restrictions have allowed the club to get back to fully engaging all staff, so that is a real positive. We still have some restrictions, but we have taken a lot from the reopening.”
Glyn Wallis, CEO of Arana Leagues Club, was delighted to have customers and staff back.
“The club enjoyed a positive result for the first weekend under stage 3 easing of restrictions. With an increased capacity, it was wonderful to have more staff back at work,” he says.
“With the café, restaurant, bottle shop, sports bar and gaming lounge now back trading seven days a week, we look forward to welcoming and hosting more of our community again.”
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