Thou­sands gear up to get Mas­ters Games party started

NT News - - NEWS - GARY SHIPWAY

THE sport­ing party that is the Alice Springs Mas­ters Games kicks off tonight with a rock­ing open­ing cer­e­mony headed by Noise­works and INXS guest vo­cal­ist Jon Stevens.

Thou­sands of ath­letes have made the pil­grim­age to the Red Cen­tre for the fourth decade of Games com­pe­ti­tion.

For the next week Alice Springs will be alive as ma­ture age ath­letes com­pete in a raft of sport­ing ac­tiv­i­ties by day and then party hard by night.

The Alice Springs Mas­ters Games known as the “Friendly Games”, have been held in Alice Springs bi­en­ni­ally in Oc­to­ber since 1986.

The Games at­tract over 35-year-olds to par­tic­i­pate in more than 30 sports.

There are more than 500 vol­un­teers and a num­ber of full-time de­part­men­tal staff em­ployed to de­liver the Games. And with al­most 4000 peo­ple in Alice Springs dur­ing the week re­tail­ers, restau­rants and ac­com­mo­da­tion houses are set to reap a much-needed fi­nan­cial boost.

In­de­pen­dent Mem­ber for Araluen Robyn Lam­b­ley said the town was buzzing with an­tic­i­pa­tion for the show­case event. “It re­ally is a spe­cial time for Alice Springs,” Mrs Lam­b­ley said. “It is like a large vil­lage in party mode.

“The town al­ways puts on its best face for the Games and this year will be no dif­fer­ent.”

Thirsty Merc will be head­lin­ing the Clos­ing Cer­e­mony.

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