Riviera craft in the Clarence River this week for the Jacaranda Festival
Riviera craft in the Clarence River this week for the Jacaranda Festival BLASK PHOTOGRAPHY

Cruisers come up the river for festival

THEY came from all directions to see this year's Jacaranda Festival, including the big white boats stationed upriver of the Grafton Bridge.

The Riviera boats were led by Ben Crawley, owner of R Marine Crawley who are Queensland's premier dealers of the vessels, and he said that one of the main benefits of owning boats like this, was the opportunity to engage in social trips like this one to Grafton with other owners.

"As a business owner we really focus on giving a social club to our owners and taking them to places where they wouldn't normally go,” Mr Crawley said.

To help with the experience, Mr Crawley travels with a full team, including media, events organisers, two engineers and a nine-metre support vessel that ferries them back and forth to shore.

Last in the river four years ago, and stopped by bad weather last year, the boats travelled from the Gold Coast and stayed at Yamba Marina for a night last week before beginning a slow five hour cruise under the new Harwood and Grafton bridges to moor just off Memorial Park.

"We did a picnic on the foreshore with a basket bade up by a local caterer, and then watched the Riverlight fireworks from our vessels,” he said.

"We're planning to enjoy the festival, see the cars, the masquerade show, and then travel back to Yamba on Monday and back to the Gold Coast on Tuesday.”

"It's certainly a unique way to see the area, it's a unique river. But there's just lovely country side and lovely people.

"We really like to get out in the local community and support the businesses.”

Mr Crawley said the Riviera is the leading Australian luxury cruiser, which was shipped internationally, and was perfect for going up and down the coast of Australia or other countries.



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