Christmas Eve started early for Grant Logue and the team at Harley & John’s Seafood in Fairy Meadow.
Mr Logue said Christmas and Easter are always the busiest time of the year for the 30-year-old business he has owned for 10.
But he and the 20 staff working Christmas Eve know what they are doing to ensure everything runs like a well fish-oiled machine.
Mr Logue’s day started at 12.30am and the first customers began queuing at 5am and hour before the Fairy Meadow business opened its doors.
The shop trades from 6am to 3pm on Christmas Eve and the team will be back to do it all again on Boxing Day from 9am to 2pm.
“It is always busiest at this time of year,” he said.
“But we make sure things run as smoothly as possible and many find standing in line for 10 or 15 minutes a good opportunity to take a break from the Christmas rush.
“There has been a really good vibe all day”.
While they waited to get in many took the opportunity to buy some chocolate on a stand set up outside the store to raise money for Chloe Saxby.
It is not the first time the business has helped the family.
Harley & Johns Seafood ordered in 4000 kilos of prawns, 24,000 oysters and 500 kilos of bugs for Christmas Eve trade.
Mr Logue said while Christmas and Easter were both busiest times of the year Christmas was bigger.
He said at Easter the shop was really busy for a week but at Christmas the increased trade goes all December and well into January.
But at both times of the year they always go the extra mile to deliver the best customer service they can at such a busy time.
Among those who work really hard at those times to ensure that is Kate Maher who retired two years ago but it always asked back to help out at Christmas and Easter.
“I love this industry,” she said.
“I am married to a commercial fisherman so it is in the blood. I worked in this industry for 31 years and can never get enough.
“The thing I enjoy most working at this time of the year is talking to so many of our customers. It is busy but everyone is excited at Christmas”.
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