SANFL has joined forces with the Barossa Council and South Australian Cricket Association in a bid to improve facilities and attract high class sport to the popular region.
In an announcement at the Barossa Sculpture Park in Bethany on Tuesday, SANFL Community Football Manager Matt Duldig said it was important to support local sports clubs in improving their infrastructure throughout country South Australia.
”From a SANFL perspective we are really excited to partner with the Barossa Council and SACA to improve community facilities throughout the region,” Duldig said.
”These developments will place the Barossa in a strong position to attract marquee matches such as AFL pre-season and SANFL Macca’s League games as well as hosting Regional Football Championships. The economic benefit to the region will be significant and we are proud football can play a key role in this.
”Outside the facility developments attracting high level sport, this will be a significant outcome for grassroots Community Football. Football clubs play an important role in every community, particularly providing positive social and health outcomes for those involved, so to have high quality facilities for young boys, girls and their families to use when they are involved at their Community Football Club, is an outstanding result.”
SANFL chief executive Jake Parkinson highlighted the importance of providing opportunities for the local Barossa community to participate in sport.
”SANFL is excited to partner with the Barossa Council and SACA to deliver facilities, that foster healthy community outcomes, grow community cohesion and enable economic benefit through sports tourism,” Parkinson said.
Duldig was joined by Redbacks captain Travis Head, male and female junior footballers from SANFL club Central District and Barossa Council Mayor Bob Sloane, who flagged his excitement at boosting visitors to the area.
“Council is extremely proud to be partnering with SACA and SANFL on this project,” Sloane said.
“Our goal is to deliver facilities, across the Barossa region, that will actively drive, and increase, participation from a grassroots level to higher competitive grades across cricket and AFL codes, within the next three to 10 years.
“Attracting such events would not only see an increase in participation levels in the Barossa, but also an increase in visitation, delivering significant benefits to the local economy including businesses, sporting clubs and tourism operators. This outcome is also a major objective of Council’s ‘The Big Project’.”