Why Noosa Schoolies will be one and done
Noosa residents can rest a little easier - their Schoolies nightmare looks set to be a one-off.
The normally laid-back Sunshine Coast enclave has been invaded by thousands of teenagers after official Schoolies celebrations on the Gold Coast were cancelled because of COVID-19.
World-famous Noosa Beach had to be closed on Sunday after a huge party overnight left the sand littered with broken bottles.
Locals complained of finding a trail of broken glass, used condoms, cigarette butts and 'nangs' (nitrous oxide canisters used by teens to get high) around Noosa.
"Who allowed this to happen?" one woman posted on a community Facebook page.
But Schoolies organisers say bookings are already flooding in for 2021 celebrations at traditional hotspot Surfers Paradise.
"The Year 11 kids traditionally start booking for next year's Schoolies now and bookings for the Gold Coast are really strong," Schoolies.com boss Matt Lloyd said.
"I'd say the influx to Noosa is a one-off, a COVID aberration."
Whereas the first week of Schoolies traditionally attracts about 20,000 teen revellers to the Gold Coast, the numbers this year are only in the hundreds.
Mr Lloyd said there would be a similarly small crowd of NSW and Victorian school-leavers on the Glitter Strip for the second week of Schoolies.
He said tomorrow's reopening of the Queensland border to Sydney, and potentially Victoria, had come too late for Schoolies and many southern teens were heading to Byron Bay or Lorne.
Shailer Park High graduates Jessica Clotworthy, Tahlia Ivanovic and Jessica Clotworthy are among only a relative handful of school-leavers celebrating on the Gold Coast.
They're finding it almost eerily quiet, especially during the day.
"We're having a good time but are mostly staying up in the apartment," Jessica said.
"The vibe seems a lot better at Noosa for the parties as there's a lot more people up there this year."
Originally published as Why Noosa Schoolies will be one and done