More than 6000 people hit the Shoalhaven over the weekend for the fourth annual Fairgrounds Festival.
The festival, which caters for both young and old, generated almost $3 million in the local economy, according to Shoalhaven Tourism manager Coralie Bell.
“This year the festival generated about $2.9 million and that’s been growing every year,” she said.
“The event organisers work really closely with the local business chamber to benefit our business owners.”
Ms Bell said accommodation was booked out in areas like Jervis Bay, Shoalhaven Heads and Kangaroo Valley for the festival, which created flow-on effects for a lot of the Shoalhaven.
“There are cafes, restaurants, equipment hire companies, cleaners, supermarkets, petrol stations, trains that all feel the effects,”she said.
“All jobs in these areas are impacted by the festival.”
The festival was held on November 30 and December 1, which is traditionally a quieter period for the Shoalhaven region.
“Shoalhaven tourism actively tries to bring big events to the Shoalhaven in early December because that is our quieter period,” Ms Bell said.
“Big events like this keep people spending and even out those peaks and troughs in visitation.”
While Fairgrounds saw some huge names like Vance Joy and Billy Bragg, it wasn’t just about music, it also showcased the Shoalhaven region.
“We are hearing that people were arriving on Thursday and staying until Sunday or Monday which gives them an extra day or two to explore and spend in the Shoalhaven,” Ms Bell said.
The festival was backed up by the Berry markets on Sunday, which kept people spending in the local economy.
Event organisers also indicated that 80 per cent of festival-goers were from outside the Shoalhaven region.
Sydney’s Anna Bryant was one of the out-of-towners who visited the Fairgrounds Festival. She attended the festival with her husband and two sons, due to the family-friendly vibe of the event.
“Fairgrounds is family friendly, the other festivals we’ve been to have been very crowded and the food hasn’t been great, here you have a really good mix of people, there are families as well as teenagers and 20-year-olds,” she said.
"Berry is absolutely beautiful, we can get a fantastic rental property five minutes away and roll on down in the car and spend the day here, everything is pretty perfect really.”
The festival offered something to keep each of the family members entertained.
“My husband and I came for The Breeders because I grew up with them in the nineties, and The Teskey Brothers,” she said.
“My sons are here to see more modern and contemporary bands – Courtney Barnett, and Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever.
“We’ve all come for different bands.”