Up to $7.2million could soon be injected into Cobram-Barooga’s economy thanks to an influx of sporting events that will hit the twin towns from as early as October.
Cobram Barooga Business Tourism has launched an ambitious plan in conjunction with several key players to put the two towns firmly on the map and generate up to $7.2million in economic impact.
The program’s long-term target is to bring 10 sporting events each year which would average 70 participants each.
The confirmed events include NSW Primary Schools Boys State Cricket Carnival, Australian Cricket Association Masters Tour, Championship Basketball 3x3 Tournament, 2018 Country Club Soccer Championships and the 2019 Wheelchair Sports NSW Country Tri-State Classic.
Two other events remain in negotiation.
In a first, both Moira Shire and Berrigan Shire are working on the project.
Sports Marketing Australia, led by managing director Rick Sleeman, is driving the program and it already has the financial backing of Dutch Media and Barooga Sporties.
CBBT hosted a dinner at the Cobram-Barooga Golf Club last Wednesday to officially launch and reveal the Sports Tourism Program.
The venue was packed with eager local businessmen and women all eager to hear what CBBT had in store for them.
CBBT chairman Don Rudd called for unity on the program, saying it presented a fantastic opportunity to breathe new life into the towns.
‘‘This can be life-changing for our area,’’ Mr Rudd said.
‘‘We are in a great spot to live, but we can make it even better and I’m sure we can if we make this work.’’
He called on local businesses to support the program by buying a CBBT business membership, which comes cheaply at just $75 a year.
Mr Sleeman said Cobram-Barooga had more than adequate sporting infrastructure to make the venture work and implored the crowd to get behind the program.
‘‘In order for this program to reach its maximum capacity, it will really need the support of the wider community,’’ he said.
Member for Ovens Valley Tim McCurdy and NSW member for Murray Austin Evans welcomed the initiative.
‘‘The launch was a watershed moment for Cobram-Barooga business. Don Rudd and his team have shown excellent leadership in bringing together business interests in these two towns,’’ Mr McCurdy said.
‘‘I congratulate both Moira and Berrigan shires, who have combined to take tourism to the next level.’’
CBBT will need to generate between $60000 and $80000 a year to make the program viable.