History of Maroochy Little Athletics Centre
Little Athletics was introduced in Queensland in 1976 after its successful formation for junior athletes in Victoria in the 1960s.
Maroochy Little Athletics Centre was the first Centre to be formed on the Sunshine Coast in September 1981. Members of the inaugural committee were: Centre Manager – David Blake; Secretary – Alison Quirke; Treasurer – Heather Love; Equipment & Programming – Graham Lukins .
Subsequent Centres were formed on the Coast during the 1980’s as the sport grew in popularity to numbers over 600. In conjunction with members from the Maroochy committee Centres were formed at Nambour, Caloundra, Maleny & Bli Bli enabling families to attend Centres in their own geographic areas.
Maroochy commenced their inaugural season at the Maroochydore Primary school grounds where 189 athletes ranging from 5 – 12yrs registered for that first season. In 1982 they moved to the Maroochydore Rugby League grounds on Wises Road and in 1992 they moved to their current grounds at Maroochydore High School. A special agreement had to be sought from the Qld Education Dept to install the lights to enable night competition and in the late 1990’s, in liaison with the school they built their own equipment shed and canteen.
Little Athletics in Qld age groups in the 1970 – 80s included Under 7 to Under 12. Registerations now include Tiny Tots (3 & 4 year olds) and age groups Under 6s to Under 17s. Maroochy caters for the full age range. In 1990 Maroochy sought “dual” affiliation with Qld Athletics to enable the older athletes (13yrs+) and senior community members to compete together under the one banner of Maroochy however this affiliation was not continued in the 2000s. Maroochy Little Athletics division maintained a steady membership of 230-250 athletes throughout.
With the introduction of Community Benefit funds & Govt. Grants the Centre was able to install a synthetic long jump facility in 2014 Shot Put & Discus pads were renewed and permanent cages were installed on Discus. More recently in 2019 the lights were upgraded to LED.
Little Athletic Centres are run entirely by volunteers and it is thanks to the dedication of past members and the support of the community businesses that Maroochy has been able to provide an excellent sporting opportunity for young athletes on the Sunshine Coast to learn their basic skills of “Run, Jump & Throw” and then to continue to State levels and in some cases, beyond.
Thank you to all those who have chosen to take the journey with us.
FAMILY, FUN & FITNESS