A day for the whole family at the ARC opening

Mayor Greg Williamson has challenged Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack to a running race rematch.

When the pair last dashed down the Mackay ARC’s synthetic track, the Deputy Prime Minister triumphed over the mayor and Member for Dawson George Christensen by a convincing margin.

Mr McCormack will return to the ARC this Saturday, March 9, for the grand opening of this international-standard complex on Boundary Road, beside the Trade Training Centre.

Cr Williamson said council, in partnership with local aquatic and athletics clubs and lessee Belgravia Leisure, had planned a day of festivities to showcase the facility to the public.

Gates open from 8am, with activities – including races, lessons and demonstrations – from 8.30am to 2.30pm and public access until 6pm.

“It’s going to be a tremendous free day for families to come along and enjoy,” Cr Williamson said.

“If the rain stays away, the Deputy Prime Minister, CQUniversity Vice Chancellor Professor Nick Klomp and I will officially open the synthetic track with a bit of a fun race,” he said.

“Am I confident of winning?  Well, no, but I have been getting a few tips from the Little Athletics members, so should at least be able to start strong.”

Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack has always been a vocal supporter of the Mackay ARC and is honoured to be invited to open the facility alongside the mayor and the CQUniversity Vice Chancellor.

“This is a fantastic community complex providing local athletes with an Olympic-standard aquatics facility and track to train on, and residents will have access to covered, heated pools for recreation and programs,” Mr McCormack said.

“The opening should be a great day and I look forward to seeing the Mackay community come out to check out their new complex,” he said.

The grand opening celebration offers everything from face painting and a jumping castle to mini swimming lessons, aqua aerobics, athletics come and try, plenty of races featuring local clubs, a water polo exhibition match and even yoga classes.

Unfortunately, heavy rains have hampered the laying of turf, so most of the grassed area, outside of the playing field, is too soft to walk on.

Residents are asked to keep to the concrete paths during the opening day.

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A fully staffed kiosk and a café is available at the complex to cater for snacks, meals and refreshments.

Parking for the event will be available at the CQUniversity Trade Training Centre and overflow parking will be at the Engineering Building and university.

Marshalls will be on site to direct traffic.

The Mackay ARC project was jointly funded, with the Federal Liberal and Nationals’ Government investing $9.9 million and Mackay Regional Council investing $13.8 million.

The 12-hectare site was contributed by CQUniversity via a long-term lease agreement.

For more information on the Mackay ARC, head to mackayarc.com.au

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