Goolwa (AU) - Rachel McMillan, the owner of Scoop, won the Cittaslow Award.


Excellence in southern Alexandrina business has been acknowledged through awards, with a cafe that only opened in late-December last year taking out one of the top honours.

The Southern Alexandrina Business Association (SABA) held its annual awards on Thursday, April 9, at the South Lakes Golf Club.

The major award winners were Andrew Burt from Whistlestop Cafe for the Individual Customer Service Award, Cocco Lounge - Business Customer Service Award, and Kate Ellison - Special Community Award.

Event organiser and SABA secretary, Karen Lume, said 300 nominations were received across the categories.

Karen Steele - owner of Cocco Lounge, which opened on December 21, 2014 - said she was "surprised" to take out the award.

She said since the awards dinner, community members have come into her cafe to congratulate her, with some gifting her with flowers.

Karen said she is "grateful for all the people who voted" and it is "nice to feel supported by the community".

"The awards encourage businesses to keep their standards up," she said.

Andrew is the head chef at Whistlestop Cafe. He has been employed at the cafe for more than five years, and thanked all who voted for him.

Goolwa resident, Kate, was recognised for her volunteering work with the Friends of the Goolwa Library and Zonta club, co-ordinating groups Breast of Friends and the Retired Police Officers Southern Branch, and her work as president of the South Coast District Hospital Auxiliary.

Kate said she was "blown away" and so excited to be nominated, she laminated the nomination letter.

"It is such a thrill, such an honour," she said.

She said she doesn't expect recognition as she is "just doing it 'cause she enjoys it".

Rachel McMillan, the owner of Scoop, won the Cittaslow Award.

Scoop distributes produce grown on the Fleurieu to local restaurants and to the public at the Victor Harbor Farmers' Market each Saturday morning.

For more than 10 years, Scoop has supported local producers to grow a variety of fruit and vegetables in a sustainable manner. Rachel believes the SABA awards present a good chance for businesses to network and said she was "taken aback by the award".

Read full article on victorharbortimes.com.au