We must chase events

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Destination Queenstown boss Stephen Pahl wants to turn the Winter Festival organising team into a full-time unit to attract more events to the resort.

The tourism bigwig reckons their expertise should be retained on a permanent basis – and he’s putting a proposal to the DQ board to that effect.

“We have an amazing skill-set within the festival team and I’ve already indicated to them that I want to keep them together,” Pahl says.

“It concerns me to be losing those accrued skills because most of the people are only working for a partial amount of the year.”

He believes a dedicated team would be invaluable in identifying event opportunities at an early stage then bidding to bring them to the Wakatipu.

“A Queenstown events unit would have to be resourced and I’ve been canvassing ideas from around town about it,” Pahl explains.

“I’m striving to find some way we can utilise the Winter Festival team all year round because we have the perfect world stage venue here.”