Monday, October 30, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Airport And Arena Unite To Boost Regional Sport And Tourism

Two of Mackay’s largest and most dynamic organisations have joined forces in a bid to attract more major sporting events to the region.

This new strategic partnership between Mackay Airport and Harrup Park has a mission to increase visitation and secure national and international sporting showdowns.

Mackay Airport Head of Operations Adrian Miles said Mackay was ‘ideally positioned’ to welcome more major events in 2024.

“This is a great opportunity to use one of the largest sporting facilities in regional Australia, and its delivering world-class experiences.

“There’s fantastic potential to grow the sports tourism market leading up to the Brisbane Olympics in 2032.

“We’ll collaborate with the team at Great Barrier Reef Arena and approach stakeholders for potential opportunities.

“We should be able to approach airline partners and see if we can get additional flights to cater for major events to bring people into the region.” Mr Miles commented.

Mr Miles stated that this is the first of some new exciting opportunities for the community that Mackay Airport is looking into, with more announcements on the way in the near future.

Harrup Park Chief Executive Officer Adrian Young said the arena would become a destination for more major key events, including 2025 Australia vs. South Africa T20 cricket as well as preparation for national and international sporting carnivals, concerts and festivals.

“Both Cricket Australia and Queensland Cricket have told us this is the best regional facility for cricket in Australia.

“We’ve had the pitch and outfield rated as excellent, with the Queensland Cricket Captain stating this is the best one outside of the Gabba.” Mr Young exclaims.  

“We will have a significant role to play in the lead up to and during the Brisbane 2032 Olympics,” he said.

But it’s not just about the cricket, with another strong focus on AFL and broadening the horizon with other sports to facilitate more events at the arena.

The dynamic partnership hopes to see the local economy diversified by an influx of tourism from all over Queensland, as well as playing a crucial role in making new opportunities a reality.

Harrup Park Chief Executive Officer Adrian Young and Mackay Airport Head of Operations Adrian Miles. Photo credit: Sinead Porter

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