Almost as quiet as a mouse, the Bega Cheese Heritage Centre opened its front doors again for business on June 20 for the first time since going into lockdown in March 2020.
Heritage Centre manager John Gardner said it was decided to take a low-key approach to the opening largely due to the many new staff members who needed to be trained and become familiar with routine.
He said the Heritage Centre also wanted to ensure all safety protocols were in place, supplies were in order and the facility was in "top shape" for visitors.
When ACM spoke to Heritage Centre supervisor Lisa Hocking on Monday, June 27, she said the café had been quite busy since they opened and her new staff had been busily trying to "learn the ropes".
Many wondered why the Heritage Centre was closed for the extended period, beyond official lockdowns.
"We did this out of an abundance of caution for our Lagoon Street and Ridge Street employees and their community," Mr Gardner said.
"While the risks of a COVID-19 outbreak originating from the Heritage Centre was low, there was still a risk."
He said the main priority of the business was always to try and minimise, and if possible eliminate, any external factors that could directly or indirectly impact its ability to continue operating the factories.
Mr Gardner said the Heritage Centre had been slowly gearing up, but was now ready to cater for the influx of regular locals, the wider community, and travellers.
Following this exciting reopening for the community, The Spotted Cow Gallery, run by Artnet Art and Craft Cooperative, also decided to reopen its doors at 9am on Friday, July 1.
President John Cross, who is a woodworker, said displays went up again on Wednesday, June 29 and he said all members were "over the moon" to have the gallery reopened.
Some of the local handmade offerings out for display would include woodwork, jewellery, knitted and crocheted pieces, ceramics, condiments, and art.
The gallery has 17 current members "all raring to go", but still required around 28 or 30 members in total to run the gallery from 9am - 5pm, seven days per week.
New members would be able to join by bringing a sample of their produce or work to be approved and "quality controlled" by the committee. They also must be available to sit in the gallery 1 or 2 days per month.
The cost to cover membership and insurance would be $10 per year and 15% commission would go back to the gallery for expenses.
To ask further questions or for membership enquires for the gallery, please call John Cross on 0429 142 895.
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