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Betting on a good cup day

AS Melbourne Cup fever hits Bundaberg, the city's businesses are also on the final leg of their preparation for the race that stops a nation.

Sugarland Tavern hotel manager Rory O'Connor said Melbourne Cup Day was one of the biggest events on the venue's calendar.

“It's up there with Bundy Thunder and New Year's Eve,” he said.

The hotel manager said people expected a little something special on the day to go with the good dress, high heels and fascinators.

“They expect bubbly and a broad range of food that they can have and share,” Mr O'Connor said.

“You've got to cater to people's expectations of the day.”

With that in mind, the tavern will provide a buffet lunch and fashion parade.

“It's a day for groups of people, particularly ladies, to dress up and go to the pub,” Mr O'Connor said.

“Instead of coming in for an hour they can enjoy the whole day.”

While the Sugarland's goal was to provide a classy day out, the Bundaberg RSL will focus on fun for its members and visitors next Tuesday.

Barry the bookie will make an appearance and patrons will be able to bet with “funny money” and compete in a best-dressed female event.

General manager Col Rankin said activities would go throughout the day and into the evening.

He said that while Anzac Day was by far the RSL's biggest day, Melbourne Cup Day was an annual highlight.

“It's very important because it's a national holiday, really,” he said.

“The whole country stops for the three or four minutes while the race is run.

“The staff get into it and we make everyone who comes along have a good time.”

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