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s t n e v e VISITORS WELCOME Sporting, lifestyle and other events contribute millions to our local economy.


n 2018, our Sunshine Coast continues to welcome a large number of sporting, lifestyle and music events, reinforcing our region’s reputation as a destination of choice for major events. In total, the region will host more than 50 state, national and international major events and will welcome more than 130,000 guests, many of who will stay on after the event and enjoy our beautiful surrounds. To make event guests’ stay as enjoyable as possible, the Sunshine Coast Council encourages the community to take part in

the events, say a friendly hello and lend a helping hand. Highlights in the first half of 2018 include Mooloolaba Triathlon, Australian Dragon Boat Championships, Queensland Oztag Senior State Cup, the netball Queensland Cup, Maleny Wood Expo and TimeWarp Festival. Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson says major events continue to be an important economic and tourism driver for our region. “In 2017, major events delivered an

estimated economic contribution of more than $60 million to the local economy. “Our region benefits economically from increased visitor numbers and also the localised expenditure associated with holding an event,” he says. “Accommodation providers, cafes and restaurants, hire car companies, sporting goods providers, travel agents, event hire companies, masseuses, furniture companies, food producers and even fashion boutiques are just some of the diverse types of local businesses who have profited from the economic contribution these events bring. “Successful events are also strong motivators that encourage event participants and their guests to return for holidays or business during the rest of the year, or in future years. “In 2018, we will be looking to maximise the value that events bring to the region and ensure events continue to deliver a wide range of economic and community benefits.” Maroochy River Park assistant manager Kirk Nicholson says events at the nearby Maroochydore Multisports Complex and surrounds provide a boon for his business. “We were fully booked out for last year’s Netball Cup and continued to refer business on to other accommodation providers. “Our facilities are well suited to family-orientated events and we find many teams and participants pass on recommendations about our park, which is great exposure for us,’’ he says. “And when we are busy, so is everyone else, as we have to hire a lot more staff, buy a lot more goods and hire more ancillary

services to handle the influx of visitors.” Perry’s Hire general manager Gillian Carr says her company welcomes major events on the Sunshine Coast. “The team at Perry’s Sunshine Coast Event Hire were proud to support the Harvey Norman National Youth Touch Football Championships, which were held at the Sunshine Coast Stadium,” Ms Carr says. “Large events require a large amount of infrastructure and as the leading hire provider on the Coast, it is fantastic to see local business supported.” Whether you are a fan of arts and culture, competitive sports, or music and entertainment, there is something for everyone to enjoy in the jam-packed 2018 events line-up.

FAST FACTS In 2018 we will welcome 130,000 visitors The Sunshine Coast will stage more than 55 major events There is an estimated economic contribution of $60 million to the regional economy 79 cents from every dollar spent by visitors flows through to other sectors of the economy In 2016/2017 there were 9.8 million total visitors to the Sunshine Coast (overnight visitors 3.7 million, daytrippers 6 million) The record visitor numbers contributed $2.06 billion to the local economy.

THE DRAGON BOATS ARE COMING TO THE COAST It will be a colourful week at Lake Kawana when more than 2500 paddlers competing in a 2000-year-old sport visit the Sunshine Coast for the Australian Dragon Boat Championships from March 3 to 8. The championships are Australia’s premier dragon boating event and bring together a cross-section of paddlers, coaches, officials and volunteers from 70 clubs across the country. As well as the spectacle of competition, dragon boat racing has a significantly rich history which will be on display with the staging of the traditional Awakening the Dragon and Laying the Dragon to Rest ceremonies open to the public. Sunshine Coast Tourism, Sport and Events portfolio councillor Jason O’Pray says it is going to be an amazing sight with each boat carrying 20 paddlers, a steerer and a drummer. “We will have paddlers visiting from all over Australia and I’m sure they will enjoy racing at Lake Kawana and appreciate the facilities of our premier sporting venue, the Sunshine Coast Stadium,” he says. “This event will be one of the largest events hosted here on the Sunshine Coast

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More than 2500 paddlers will compete this year and is expected to generate significant economic returns. “We know that many of the paddlers and their supporters are staying on past the event to enjoy everything that the Sunshine Coast has to offer.” Event organiser and marketing director for Dragon Boat Queensland Ross Boyce says the paddling contingent is excited to be coming back to the Coast. “The opportunity to compete at the highest level is important to the development of the sport in Australia and what better place to host the event than on the Sunshine Coast,” Mr Boyce says.

“AusChamps are always tough and uncompromising and the 2018 Australian Championships promises first-class racing. “Similarly, state pride is on the line as Australia’s top crews fight it out on State versus State day to win the title of the best state in Australia. “We are also proud to be supporting a range of local Sunshine Coast and Queensland businesses through the hosting of the event here.” Andrew Murray, from ERMS Emergency and Risk Management Services, says national events like AusChamps provide a boon for his business. “With events like the National Dragon Boat Championships coming to the Sunshine Coast, it demonstrates the importance of how many opportunities there are not only to host an event, but for local businesses to also get behind and provide services,” Mr Murray says. “Let’s see more local businesses supporting these amazing events across the beautiful Sunshine Coast for more years to come.” For more information on the event, visit sunshinecoaststadium.sunshinecoast.

NATIONAL DRAGON BOAT CHAMPIONSHIPS When: March 3 to 8 Where: Lake Kawana Anticipated visitors: 8500 Important information: • Day one: State v State battle • Days two and three: Premier and junior teams and Breast Cancer Survivors (BCS) categories compete • Days three and four: Australian club senior crew categories A, B and C (Australia’s most experienced paddlers) compete. Event website:

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FESTIVAL IS BIGGER & BETTER THAN EVER Seasoned professionals will join keen amateurs and kids when the Mooloolaba Triathlon Festival comes to town.


ooloolaba Triathlon Festival has been a feature event on the Australian triathlon calendar for 26 years and has shown the same endurance as the athletes who compete in it. Starting in 1993, the event is now stronger than ever, attracting the biggest names in the sport seeking their shot at glory. With a motto of swim, bike, run, party, it’s easy to see the organisers and athletes are serious about their sport and having a good time. The Olympic-distance Mooloolaba Triathlon is held on a course that’s famous for its ocean swim and the great atmosphere created by thousands of athletes descending on this popular beach town. It’s perfect for everyone, from beginners to the most seasoned triathlete and includes the Mooloolaba Superkidz and Special Triathlon, the Mooloolaba Twilight five-kilometre run and one-kilometre Ocean Swim. The event also features the Mooloolaba ITU Triathlon World Cup, where participants will see some of the biggest names in triathlon swimming in

the same waters, cycling the same roads and pounding the same pavement as their own course. A number of high profile national and international athletes will contest this year’s Mooloolaba Triathlon in preparation for the Commonwealth Games. Two-time reigning Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee, Queenslander Luke Willian, South Africa’s Richard Murray and New Zealand’s Ryan Sissons and Australian Matt Hauser are all set to compete. High profile women triathletes include American Kirsten Kasper, Canadian Joanna Brown and Australian Charlotte McShane.

MOOLOOLABA TRIATHLON When: March 9 to 11 Where: Mooloolaba Esplanade Anticipated visitors: More than 8000 Important information: Visit or call 1300 761 384 Event website:

OPEN FOR BUSINESS DURING THE MOOLOOLABA TRI This year the transition area for the Mooloolaba Triathlon will be staged in the parking area of the Wharf Mooloolaba precinct. Come and watch the action up close and enjoy some of the Wharf Mooloolaba’s newest attractions at the same time. For information on Mooloolaba Triathlon at the Wharf visit If you’re visiting Mooloolaba or attending the triathlon, parking is available at the double-storey carpark at the Wharf

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Mooloolaba, Brisbane Road carpark (Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoon), Mooloolaba State School and in the various two-hour zones around Mooloolaba. Parkyn Parade will remain accessible throughout the event. Free shuttle buses will run regularly from Mountain Creek State High School. For information on changed traffic conditions and how to best access Mooloolaba during the event visit or call the IRONMAN hotline 1300 761 384.

LIGHTNING STRIKES AGAIN Sunshine Coast Lightning is gearing up for another big season of netball and the defence of their premiership title.


t may have been the team’s first year in the competition, but that didn’t stop the Sunshine Coast Lightning from charging through the 2017 netball season. Under the leadership of coach Noeline Taurua, the team proved its force, winning the Suncorp Super Netball grand final title against GWS. And now the team is back, and set to begin the tilt for back-to-back premierships with a grand final rematch in Sydney to open the 2018 campaign. The Sunshine Coast’s season fixture is packed full of blockbuster match-ups with a massive challenge against last season’s runner-up, the Giants, on April 29. Lightning will host its first home game in round three against Fever – all seven Sunshine Coast home games are set to be played at USC Stadium in 2018. The Coast club will not play Friday night netball in 2018, with five Saturday clashes and nine Sunday showdowns on offer. There is a major change to match times, with the Sunshine Coast to contest most of its games at a more family-friendly time slot of 3pm. Lightning CEO Danielle Smith says the 2018 draw provides great opportunities for the team. “Being able to showcase netball and Lightning to a national audience on the Nine Network’s main channel, as well as on Telstra TV, is a tremendous opportunity and it is great exposure for the club and the region,’’ she says. “We’re pleased that all of our home matches will be played right here on the

Sunshine Coast where the squad lives and trains. Brisbane Entertainment Centre is a good venue but it is not our home – USC Stadium is our fortress and where our high-performance set-up is based. “There are no easy matches in Suncorp Super Netball but we are happy with what is on offer. Netball Australia has produced a balanced fixture with plenty of variety for our supporters.” Ms Taurua is also excited by the fixture. “We have a tremendous opportunity to begin our season when we travel interstate to face our 2017 grand final opponent,” she says. “We need to prepare well in the pre-season and be ready to hit the ground running when we take on the Giants. The target is now on our back and we need to be hungry for success. Only time will tell if we can get the balance right and live up to our standards of 2017.” Meanwhile, the Lightning has welcomed foundation partner Sunshine Coast Airport as the official membership partner for the next two seasons. Australia’s fastest growing airport since July 2015, Sunshine Coast Airport will help Lightning’s membership base soar to new heights as the club targets 3000 members this year.

BECOMING A MEMBER Sunshine Coast Lightning membership ranges from Supporter to Platinum and offers a range of benefits. To find out more, or for game tickets, visit

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LET THE GAMES BEGIN The Sunshine Coast is hosting more than 500 athletes and officials in the lead-up to the Commonwealth Games.


ur great climate, welcoming community and premier sports training facilities ensure that the Sunshine Coast is the perfect place to prepare for the Games. The fact that the Sunshine Coast will host such a large number of athletes training in region prior to the games reinforces our region’s reputation as a destination of choice for high-performance sports training. More than 500 athletes and officials from nine countries, representing 16 sports, will visit the Sunshine Coast and use the region to prepare for Commonwealth glory. Athletes have started arriving and will continue to set up home bases with their families and officials until early April, as part of their structured preparations for the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Our very own national rugby sevens and netball teams will train on the Sunshine Coast, along with all sports teams from Scotland, athletics and swimming competitors from Wales and the English triathletes. Our region has also attracted teams from smaller island nations with the Isle of Man cycling, athletics, gymnastics, badminton, triathlon and lawn bowls teams setting up on the Sunshine Coast. They are joined by Saint Helena’s badminton, shooting, swimming and athletics competitors and Niue’s lawn


“Athletes have started arriving and will continue to set up bases with their families and officials”

bowls, athletics, netball and weightlifting contingents. The Sunshine Coast Council, in partnership with key stakeholders, is co-ordinating an extensive range of activities to embrace visiting athletes, coaches, officials and their supporters to ensure their stay is productive and fondly remembered. The Welcoming the Commonwealth project is closely aligned to the High Performance Sports training strategy and activity through the region.

Twenty-five Sunshine Coast residents have been selected as baton bearers for the Caloundra leg of the Queen’s Baton Relay. They include: Rhondda Alexander Jamie Milne James Campbell Riley Moore Wendy Coghill Bruce Morcombe Brent Crosby Denise Morcombe Peter Dale Connor Murphy Mary Earnshaw Jeanette Parker Corbin Easton Lachlan Smart Kristy Ellis Leonard Thompson Leanne Evans Selina Tomasich Ethan Forge Samara Welbourne Raymond Ham Molly White Marayke Jonkers Sarah Windsor David McIntosh Visit to find the relay map and see when and where your favourite bearer will be carrying the baton.


FESTIVAL OF CHAMPIONS WELCOME EVENT On March 25, the Sunshine Coast will roll out the welcome mat with a free community event that welcomes local and visiting international athletes. Come along and meet some of the athletes at Cotton Tree Park from 3pm to 7pm.

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You can try your hand at some Commonwealth Games sports, bring a picnic rug and chairs and enjoy a variety of food stalls, entertainment and cultural displays, with the evening culminating in a fireworks display.

On March 27, you can be a part of history and watch the Caloundra leg of the Commonwealth Games Queen’s Baton Relay. This Games tradition celebrates the Commonwealth’s diversity, inspires community pride and excites people about the world-class festival of sports and culture that is soon to arrive. The relay started in Australia on December 25, 2017 and the baton will travel 40,000 kilometres visiting all states and territories before arriving on the Gold Coast for the Opening Ceremony on April 4. The Caloundra leg of the relay will start at Queen Street at 9.54am. As part of the relay, there will be a free community celebration at Kings Beach Amphitheatre from 9.15am, with the baton expected to arrive at 10.10am. Enjoy amazing performances by the Gubbi Gubbi Dance Troupe, the national anthem performed by Cassi Marie Hilbers, and a collaboration between local artist Mason Hope and national icon Tjupurru.

Participants can write messages and well wishes to their favourite athletes on a special postcard, watch a gymnastics display and come and try Little Athletics.

Check for up-to-date information including road closures, bus parking and contact details.

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CALENDAR OF EVENTS MARCH Australian Dragon Boat Federation National Championships When: March 3 to 8 Where: Lake Kawana 8500 anticipated visitors Mooloolaba Triathlon When: March 9 to 11 Where: Mooloolaba 8600 anticipated visitors Queensland Surf Life Saving Championships – Opens and Masters When: March 16 to 18 Where: Maroochydore 3700 anticipated visitors

Triathlon Pink When: April 20 Where: University of the Sunshine Coast 1800 anticipated visitors South Queensland Caravan, Camping, Boating, Fishing Expo When: April 20 to 22 Where: Nambour Showgrounds

Holden Scramble Championship Final When: May 17 to 21 Where: Twin Waters Resort and Golf Club 200 anticipated visitors

Sunshine Coast Lightning 2018 Round 1 When: April 29 Where: Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney

Aussie Aito and National Marathon Titles When: May 18 to 20 Where: Mooloolaba Beach 1100 anticipated visitors



Antiques & Collectables Fair When: May 5 to 6 Where: Caloundra Indoor Stadium

Collectorama When: June 2 Where: Caloundra Indoor Stadium

Queensland Oztag Senior State Cup When: March 16 to 18 Where: Sunshine Coast Stadium 3400 anticipated visitors Queensland Cup When: May 5 to 7 YogaFest Where: Maroochy Multi Sports When: March 24 to 25 Complex Where: Lake Kawana 2200 anticipated visitors Community Centre 700 anticipated visitors Maleny Wood Expo

APRIL Sunshine Coast Ukulele Festival When: April 19 to 22 Where: Kenilworth Showgrounds 1700 anticipated visitors

When: May 5 to 7 Where: Maleny Showgrounds 3900 anticipated visitors Time Warp Festival When: May 6 Where: Palmwoods 2200 anticipated visitors Queensland State District and Side

FREE WI-FI OUTLETS • Alexandra Headland Surf Club • Beerwah Library • Caloundra Art Gallery • Caloundra Bulcock Street • Caloundra Indoor Stadium • Caloundra Library • Coolum Caravan Park • Coolum Library • Cotton Tree Caravan Park • Dicky Beach Caravan Park • Kawana Library • Kenilworth Library • Kings Beach • Maleny Library • Maroochydore Beach Caravan Park • Maroochydore Library • Maroochydore Pierce Park • Maroochydore Surf Club • Mary Cairncross Park • Mooloolaba South • Mooloolaba Esplanade • Mooloolaba Surf Club • Mudjimba Beach Caravan Park • Nambour Library • Sunshine Coast Airport • Select accredited Visitor Information Centre locations

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Bowls Championships When: May 14 to 27 Where: Various bowls clubs 450 anticipated visitors

Downunder Beachfest When: June 6 to 10 Where: Caloundra 1100 anticipated visitors Queensland Oztag Tri Series When: June 16 to 17 Where: Sunshine Coast Stadium 2800 anticipated visitors Queensland Gymnastics State Club Championships and Border Challenge When: June 29 to July 3 Where: Caloundra Indoor Stadium 2900 anticipated visitors Sunshine Coast Winter Bowls Carnival When: June 30 to July 13 Where: Various Sunshine Coast bowls clubs 500 anticipated visitors

IMPORTANT INFORMATION All events in this feature are correct at the time of print. Weather and unexpected circumstances can lead to event cancellations or rescheduling, so please check the event websites to keep abreast of any changes. Major events like those in this feature can also lead to changed traffic conditions. For details on which roads and carparks are open, where events are staged visit sunshinecoast. for details. My Weekly Preview | March 2, 2018 27

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My Events 2018  
My Events 2018