Queensland Murri Carnival moves to Beetson’s country
by Troy Byers 8 April 2014
he Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council (QAIHC), Arthur Beetson Murri Rugby League Carnival is making its way to the traditional country of the late league legend, Arthur Beetson. The decision to move the popular all Indigenous league carnival after two years from the City of Ipswich to Redcliffe is in recognition of the rugby league immortal. Tony Currie founder of the Murri Rugby League Carnival said the decision to relocate the carnival from Ipswich to the Moreton Bay Region has come after much consideration and discussion with the Arthur Beetson Foundation and carnival stakeholders. “The Murri Carnival has been
Peter Betros (Chairman QRL), Brad Beetson (Arthur Beetson Foundation), Bob Jones (Chairman Redcliffe leagues Club), Allan Sutherland (Mayor Moreton Bay Regional Council), Reg Gulley (Member for Murrumba), Lizzie Adams (QAIHC Chairperson), Adrian Carson (Institute of Urban Indigenous Health CEO) and Steve Dickson (Minister for National Parks, Recreation, Sport and Racing). Image supplied.
held in Ipswich City for the past two years and has gone from strength to strength and we are confident taking the carnival to Arthur’s old stomping ground, the Redcliffe Dolphins will only build on the popularity of the carnival with more than the 30 000 people attending the carnival in 2013,” Tony said. Currie said Murri League and the Beetson Foundation would like to extend their sincere gratitude to the Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale for his support over the past few years. Mayor Pisasale said “I’m always happy to support what’s good for the game and cause,” and sends his best wishes for the carnival’s future endeavours.
For the Beetson family members, the decision to take the carnival to Redcliffe has been met with great elation. “It will be wonderful to have the carnival on my own family’s traditional country, not to mention the place where my father first came to prominence as a footballer and was laid to rest after his passing in 2011. It is also where myself and my brothers all played junior football for the dolphins,” said Arthur’s son, Brad Beetson. Welcoming the carnival is Moreton Bay Regional Council, Mayor Allan Sutherland who said playing host to this event is without a doubt a regional highlight. “What better way to recognise
the great Arthur Beetson than to host an all-Indigenous rugby league event here in Redcliffe to showcase Queensland’s finest Indigenous rugby league players and the future stars of the game,” Mayor Sutherland said. “Artie’s contribution on and off the field will not be forgotten, and we are grateful to Redcliffe Dolphin’s President, Bob Jones and the Board for getting behind this event that will bring thousands of visitors to our region from all over the state.” The major sponsor of the carnival QAIHC, and Chairperson, Elizabeth (Lizzie) Adams said the Murri Carnival contributes significantly to good public and preventative health programs supporting Queensland’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population. “People from all over the state travel to participate in this event and all players and officials are required to undertake a ‘Health Check’ at their local Aboriginal Medical Service, with players competing in the under 15
Arthur Beetson playing for Redcliffe: New Limited.
competition also required to maintain 90% attendance at school. Lizzie said in the three months leading up to the carnival, individuals are responsible for engaging in activities to check on their health and wellbeing and this is as a direct result of the Murri Carnival eligibility process. The four day long carnival is also underpinned by the Institute for Urban Indigenous Health’s Deadly Choices campaign where people are encouraged to make healthy lifestyle choices. Minister for Recreation and Sport, Steve Dickson said the Queensland Government was pleased to provide $30,000 sponsorship for the event. “This annual carnival honours Queensland rugby league greats, both male and female, past and present, and allows the next generation of talent to take to the field. “Events such as this help us to encourage more Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders to get involved in physical activity, delivering on the
Newman Government’s promise to get more Queenslanders involved in recreation and sport” he said. The carnival will be held at Dolphin Oval Thursday 25th to Sunday 28th September and more than 50 teams both men, women, under 15’s will culminate in representative sides being chosen in the Men’s, and Women’s Queensland Teams, Under 16 Allstars and Under 15’s. Chairman of the QRL Peter Betros was very supportive of the move & was great the Carnival was in Redcliffe where Arthur started his career. The Men’s team will play the New Zealand Maoris in Queensland in October and then tour Fiji. The Women’s team will play the New Zealand Maoris in Queensland in October and the Under 15’s will tour Papua New Guinea. The Murri League Carnival is proudly sponsored by the Australian Government, QAIHC, Queensland Government and the Moreton Bay Regional Council. The Carnival is an alcohol, smoke and drug free event.