The day has come where iconic Riverland landmark ‘The Big Orange’ has been closed down. After a successful opening day, owners Kianna Benitez and Harry Sheperd claim there was no follow-up support from the community, leaving them with no choice but to shut down.
“It is really disappointing, when you put so much time and money into fixing it up and getting it ready to reopen, and you have all these expectations about how many people will come visit, and then just nothing. We really thought the community would pull through and give us a fair go, but I guess The Riverland just isn’t that type of place.” said Kianna.
“I don’t think we did anything wrong, I just think The Riverland isn’t ready to support a local business like ours. People don’t understand that we have to put a $30 entry fee, and yes, a bottle of orange juice is $7 but these are the prices people need to accept, otherwise there’s no way we could afford to keep it open. It’s just really disappointing to see the community not step up and support us.” said Harry.
Owners Kianna and Harry say they are in the process of putting The Big Orange on the market, but have concerns that the $1.3 million asking price may be too much for Riverland residents to afford.