Apart from the dodgy, unreliable transport network, lack of imaginative, accessible and satisfying entertainment, spattering of retail strips with dilapidated store fronts and er, some bogan-esque minorities the Central Coast is a huge geographical area with so much variety and potential. Prepare yourself but I believe the coast has the potential to be a mix between Bondi and Newcastle – the style and culture sprinkled with art and a casual je ne sais quoi. Why not? We're basically half way in between anyway.
In terms of natural beauty and recreational activities of the outdoor kind the coast has unlimited possibilities for adventures with friends or soaking up the elements with loving lovers. We have basically everything that gives us no excuse but to get up and get outside every once in a while. And really we should make a point to explore our surroundings. It makes you appreciate where you live so much more and you can handle the crappy aspects of the coast a little better. So go get lost in maze for a while or something.
The Central Coast seems like a place to grow up in and then get away from but I can't help but to be personally passionate about the coast. No matter where I am or where I've lived the coast has always had my heart and been my home. I look around and see so much potential for things to be improved upon or completely untouched niches that young people could sink their teeth into and really make a living out of. That is one thing though – we have a lot of entrepreneurship and mum-run businesses amongst the Central Coast and day by day it's slowly growing which is what keeps us moving forward and helps us keep up (or should I say "catch up"?) with the times. If there is ever a place to start a new business idea – it's the coast.
It's sad but our entertainment venues themselves leave a hangover – "Why did I go there again?" And it's ironic considering the coast boasts a steady population of uninspired youths with disposable incomes. The lack of imagination, variety, quality in our nightlife leaves little to be desired. So they probably make up for it by consuming the amount of alcohol they do. Maybe we just need to hound promoters and clubs with our own ideas and hopefully they'll get the hint - *hint hint*.
Our art scene is rather quiet and unless you know where to look or who to know, you won't find much. We have a regional gallery, seaside souvenir shacks and community art centres in nearly every suburb that are saturated with elderly ladies painting landscapes or crocheting teapot cosies, bless 'em. That's about it. Fortunately Gosford City Council has a good thing going with CreateInnovate.
I've also heard rumours of mixed discipline studios here – one I've found that's more interactive then retail is Fusion Arts. The variety of art that is out there in general should be enough to stir the blood of anyone on the coast with some kind of inkling of creativity – burlesque, mixed media, photography, performance art, sculpture, fashion design, live installations, stencils, make up artistry, whatever. The Central Coast itself is a clean canvas. Just create legally of course.
Our fashion community breathes a steady yet stale pulse – with two main commercial organs being the main source of our purchases - I speak of Westfield Tuggerah and Erina Fair of course. More often than ever before we're turning to online shopping carts in a desperate bid to find unique pieces and latest trends. There is potential here in the local fashion community too.
We have a market community that grows stronger every week, empty shopfronts and a desire to express personal individual style. A little local support, taking that little bit of extra effort to explore the shops of different coastal areas and physically lending stock or store suggestions to retailers would go a long way in strengthening and expanding our current fashion community. Or better yet dig into you and your friends own passion for fashion and build something inspiring yourselves.
To summarise this article without too much eye-rolling the Central Coast could be considered a half-empty glass with nothing to quench our thirsts – but with the amount of potential and desire for change we should look a little harder, take hold of the opportunities here and start enjoying the coast for the half-full glass it is - the new potential Bondi.