Little Bit of Broke – Waste of Time

As the proud owner of Honey Wines Australia Meadery, I feel compelled to share my recent experience with you regarding the “Little Bit of Broke” event organized by the Broke Fordwich Tourism Association. While the concept of showcasing our local wineries and fostering community engagement is commendable, I am deeply disappointed by the unfair practices, lack of transparency, and disregard for promises that marred this event.

One of the fundamental issues at hand is the token system employed during the event, which tokens are exchanged for wine tastings. Initially, businesses were led to believe that we would receive a fair share of the proceeds from token sales ($5) – a promise that was verbally communicated to me prior to signing up for the event. However, after committing our resources and time to participate, we were blindsided by an email revealing that we would only receive a fraction of what was initially promised. This sudden change not only undermines trust but also raises serious questions about the transparency and integrity of the event organizers.

Let’s talk numbers for a moment. Customers were charged $7.50 per token, but businesses like mine only received $2.50 of that amount. The remaining $5 went straight into the coffers of the Broke Fordwich Tourism Association. This means that two-thirds of the token’s value – essentially, your hard-earned money – is being siphoned off by the organizers. As a small business owner, I find this practice not only disheartening but also unjust, considering businesses paid $770 to participate in the event I feel that also skimming the majority of the token price is somewhat double dipping.

But it doesn’t end there. There was also an issue with the promised bus service during the event. While it was advertised that buses would run on the Saturday and Sunday between all participating venues, on Sunday, they deviated from the promised set route. Instead, they operated like taxis, taking passengers to where they wanted to go, thereby favouring more popular and well-known venues. This biased approach puts lesser-known businesses at a significant disadvantage and undermines the spirit of inclusivity and fairness that events like these should uphold. We (and several other businesses) did not receive a single bus visit our venue on the Sunday.

When I raised my concerns with the Broke Fordwich Tourism Association regarding both the token situation and the bus service deviation, their response was dismissive and unapologetic. They denied any wrongdoing and attempted to deflect responsibility by highlighting the volunteer efforts put into organizing the event. Rather than offer a solution their ultimate suggestion was for me to leave the association if I was dissatisfied, offering a refund for my membership fees as a consolation.

Faced with such blatant disregard for fairness and accountability, I have made the difficult decision to part ways with the association. However, my commitment to advocating for fairness and transparency in our local community remains unwavering.

To all the tourists considering participating in next year’s event, I urge you to reconsider. Instead of supporting an event that prioritizes profit over fairness, I encourage you to explore our region’s wineries and businesses independently, where your patronage directly supports the hardworking individuals who pour their passion into crafting exceptional products.

To my fellow business owners, I implore you to think twice before aligning yourselves with events or organizations that fail to uphold the principles of fairness and transparency. Our collective voice and actions can drive positive change and ensure that events in our community are truly inclusive and beneficial to all.

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