Pirie to be the perfect host

MASTERS GAMES: Genevieve Pontikinas, Maxine Hawking and Rhys Millington.

MASTERS GAMES: Genevieve Pontikinas, Maxine Hawking and Rhys Millington.

With an array of events coming to the city of opportunity in 2019, the questions lingers as to why the city 230 kilometres north of Adelaide was chosen to be the host. 

The new sports precinct is probably the biggest draw card with Memorial Oval opening up avenues of opportunity for local, state and national football, cricket, soccer and baseball. 

The bowls and croquet clubs have received new artificial turf, new toilets and a new club house and across the road, the swimming precinct has added a new amenities block, indoor learn to swim pool and toddler pool with water play equipment.

Additionally, there is a new gymnasium for gymnastics, squash courts and a multi-purpose facility which is currently being used by dance teams. 

Coming in at approximately $21.7 million, the work that has been completed since demolition began in January 2017 has been deemed incredibly worthy of playing host to what is expected to be thousands of sports men and women. 

The events coordinator at the Port Pirie Regional Council Genevieve Pontikinas believes that although the city looks very different to how it did seven years ago when the Masters Games was last here, Port Pirie is well prepared to take on these sporting events. 

"I feel like we are prepared. We are having a lot of big sporting events. The Masters Games is probably the longest being over 10 days but in terms of numbers, we have done it before with gymnastics and hockey. We are going to be doing it with AFL, it is something that we are getting more prepared for as a council," she explained.

The preparation done for the AFL will carry over. We have had the Masters Games before, we had it 7 years ago. Although a lot has changed, we have got a good foundation on how the community was involved.

Genevieve Pontikinas

The council are wanting the local community feel as if they are a part of the events, most specifically the Masters Games which will be in Pirie from April 5 to 14. 

To have the welcome wave of a friendly local when you arrive to a city of unfamiliarity can make a world of difference and this is what Port Pirie is striving for. 

"We have a group of volunteers who have expressed interest and will be working with the sports and at the registration centre," Genevieve said. 

"We want to make the local community feel like they are apart of the games." 

To become a volunteer for the Masters Games, contact Genevieve Pontikinas on 8633 8725.