GO PURPLE: How businesses can share jacaranda spirit
THE cancellation of this year's Jacaranda Festival hasn't stopped Paper Daisy Florist from getting into the jacaranda spirit.
Next week, businesses across Grafton and surrounding areas will be emblazoned with the city's iconic indigo hues in celebration of the Go Purple campaign.
"We've been open four years and every year we've dressed up and done something to celebrate the Jacaranda Festival season," Laetisha Perry from Paper Daisy Florist said.
"It's a great community event. All the shops that dress up have a lot of fun, then we all go for a walk and see what everyone has come up with."
The Go Purple campaign encourages businesses in Grafton, South Grafton and surrounding villages to decorate their premises and for staff to dress in purple to promote themselves to locals and visitors to help increase turnover.
The campaign, which has a first prize of $1000, will be held during Jacaranda Season from
Friday, October 16 to Wednesday, November 11 while the trees are in full bloom.
"We'll have a purple window display and will be turning the shop purple," Ms Perry said.
"We're doing a theme for the shop, obviously with purple all through, but the theme itself is a secret so everyone will have to wait until we unveil it."
Jacaranda Festival manager Mark Blackadder said while the festival committee's focus was still on the health and wellbeing of the broader community, the Go Purple campaign was designed to support local business and promote the experience of this once-a-year spectacle.
"Local businesses, including many accommodation providers, benefit from this time of year for a large part of their income, but due to coronavirus and the ongoing uncertainty will almost certainly experience a downturn in trade," he said.
However, Ms Perry is optimistic that this year's event will give the community a chance to reflect on how much the Jacaranda Festival means to the town's identity.
"It might not be as busy as previous years but I think it's going to give us all a chance to see how it was when it first started," she said.
"I see it happening already; that spirit of the community which kept this amazing event going all these years."
All registered businesses will be visited by the judges during the dates of Jacaranda Season and the best Go Purple themed business will win a $1000 cash prize.
All registered businesses will also receive a promotional post on Grafton Jacaranda Festival's Facebook page which has 12,700 followers.
CLICK HERE to register your business for the Go Purple campaign.