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Exciting Boost for Murray River Events

Ski For Life
Melissa Smith

Four Murray River Councils secure a slice of Funding Pie

Over $100,000 in funding to enhance local events and draw visitors to the region has been dished out to four local councils along the picturesque Murray River.

Berri Barmera Council, District Council of Loxton Waikerie, and Rural City of Murray Bridge will each receive $15,000, while the Mid Murray Council is set to benefit from a substantial $90,000 allocation through South Australia Tourism Commission’s (SATC) Tourism Event Support Grant.

“This funding is a game-changer for our river communities,” says Zoe Bettison, emphasising the commitment to supporting the region. “Events play a crucial role in attracting visitors, offering them a compelling reason to visit right now. With a lineup of exciting events scheduled for 2024 and beyond, we anticipate a surge in visitors eager to explore the beauty our river regions have to offer.”

Local councils plan to use the funding to breathe life into existing events and introduce new ones. Highlights include carp fishing competitions at Loxton and Murray Bridge, a sizzling BBQ challenge, a music, food, and light show festival on Lake Bonney, the Cobdogla Country Music Festival, and thrilling powerboat races and rowing regattas at Berri.

Simone Bailey, Mayor of the Mid Murray Council, was grateful for the $90,000 Tourism Event Support Grant, acknowledging its significant impact on driving more visitation to local towns and communities. “After the setbacks of cancelled annual events during the summer of 2022-23, this funding will help us revive existing events and create opportunities for new ones. We’ll also be actively promoting our local tourism sector.”

The additional funds for the Mid Murray Council will not only support tourism recovery efforts but also aid in creating new events and marketing the region, which faced substantial challenges during the flood event.

This funding injection is part of the broader $500,000 Mid Murray recovery initiative, including over $300,000 to assist businesses severely impacted by the floods. These programs form integral components of the $4.6 million river recovery plan, encompassing initiatives like the ‘Rise up for our River’ marketing campaign and the successful River Revival Voucher program, with the third and final round of vouchers being up for grabs in February 2024.

Mayor Bettison extends appreciation to the Mid Murray, Berri Barmera, Loxton Waikerie, Murray Bridge, and Renmark Paringa Councils for their unwavering support in delivering targeted and timely assistance. “Together, we’re shaping a brighter future for our river communities.”

As Simone Bailey aptly puts it, “We’re pleased to share the $150,000 in funding with our neighboring councils who also weathered the challenges of the once-in-a-century flooding event. This collaborative effort is a testament to the resilience and unity of our river communities.”


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