Wingham scoops three golds at the North Coast and Legendary Pacific Coast Tourism Awards

Bent on Food owner Donna Carrier with partner Grahame Nash celebrating winning two gold awards at the North Coast and Legendary Pacific Coast Tourism Awards.
Bent on Food owner Donna Carrier with partner Grahame Nash celebrating winning two gold awards at the North Coast and Legendary Pacific Coast Tourism Awards.

Wingham cleaned up at the North Coast and Legendary Pacific Coast Tourism Awards in Port Macquarie on Saturday.

Donna Ballard (centre) with some of the Wingham Akoostik Festival team celebrating winning gold.

Donna Ballard (centre) with some of the Wingham Akoostik Festival team celebrating winning gold.

Bent on Food repeated last year’s success by scooping gold in both the Tourism Restaurants and Catering Services category and Excellence in Food Tourism.

The Wingham Akoostik Festival took home the gold for Festivals and Events.

“It was really exciting,” said Akoostik organiser Donna Ballard.

It was the first time the rapidly growing music festival entered the awards.

“It gives us that extra boost of credibility which will help us attract bigger artists and more funding in the future,” Donna added.

Both gold winners will now go through to the State awards to be held later in the year.

More than 150 tourism industry leaders celebrated at the gala presentation dinner at Cassegrain Winery.

“I was so excited when Akoostik won,” admits Bent on Food’s Donna Carrier.

“We sponsor the event and work really closely together. It’s also really good because they are all volunteers.”

Bent on Food is no stranger to winning with numerous industry awards to its name. 

But Donna doesn’t take new wins for granted.

“It is valuable feedback based on what we’ve done the previous year,” she said.

“It shows our consistency working so closely with local producers developing a business focussed on tourism.

“But for us it’s not just a business, it’s a labour of love.”