Local business operators are encouraging residents to see the long term benefits of Ironman Port Macquarie over minor inconveniences such as road closures.
As one of Australia's toughest races, the event brings about 3,000 competitors to town. But with that comes increased traffic delays and road closures.
Port Macquarie Chamber of Commerce executive officer Mark Wilson said the event brings commercial wealth and a positive international vibe to Port Macquarie.
"The influx of visitors to town is far in excess of just the competitors and obviously they are all spending money which is a good thing," he said.
"Business needs to cater for Ironman to make sure we see a big return on realistically a pretty small investment as far as the town goes.
"Yes we see it's a busy weekend, there are a few less than positive locals saying it's hard to find a car park but if that's the worst that happens compared to the investment it brings than that's a pretty small price to pay.
"People often don't consider that the influx of activity in town pays wages for their kids or their neighbours kids to work that weekend, it benefits everyone in the long run."
Seasalt Cafe & Restaurant Port Macquarie has been adjusting their opening hours from 6am to 4am for the last four years to cater for the event.
Owner operator Marten Clark said he also employs extra staff on the day.
"I think it's great for the town and I'm willing to open early to do that to support the community," he said.
"I'm willing put on extra staff, taking that risk and having five people rather than opening usually with two.
"We allow for Ironman, staff can dress up and cheer runners.
"It's not a public holiday but if other businesses are closed it's their choice."
Rydges & Sails Port Macquarie by Rydges, area director of sales and marketing Kate Wood-Foye said the event showcases Port Macquarie's natural beauty and hospitality.
"The energy and buzz surrounding the event is absolutely electric and certainly flowed through the hotel with a strong week of trade for both accommodation and dining," she said.
"The staff certainly benefit from this energy and activity with an increase in hours in the week leading to the event and on the day itself."
Ironman Australia also runs a restaurant program giving competitors a Athlete Welcome voucher worth $30 to use in 28 establishments across the town.
Port Macquarie hotelier Alistair Flower, who has two businesses on the voucher list including Settlers Inn and Little Shack, said it was up to business owners to capitalise on the opportunity.
"We saw a lot more tourists and generally speaking we saw more business," he said.
"It's up to the individual business owner to take advantage of the opportunity that presents itself.
"Some people say 'well I don't see any benefit' but ultimately there's short term benefits for multiple businesses who can work off the additional tourism.
"Even infrastructure type decisions based on the popularity and how the town is flourishing on the back of major events like Ironman."
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