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51st Yuendumu Sports Weekend

Yuendumu Community held its 51st Anniversary of the Yuendumu Sports Weekend this Picnic Day long weekend. People travelled for hundreds of miles to be part of the competition. Several ongoing events and programs were scheduled for the long weekend these included football, softball, basketball, battle of the bands, kid’s athletics, dance competition, disco and gospel reading.  About 20 communities and more than 10 teams from Central Australia to Western Australia came across and participated. It was another memorable event for everyone who came along. The event started on the evening of 1 August and finished on 5 August.

On Saturday, the Minister for Community Services the Honourable Bess Price officially opened the 51st Yuendumu Sports Weekend after tossing the coin at the first footy match of the event. 

Due to the overflow of the teams and windy-dusty weather the football, softball and basketball games couldn’t finish in the scheduled time. An additional half day was added to search the best teams. It has been said that there were 2000 people around the community during the events. There were lots of people around camping everywhere. The community has again worked hard to hold the event and to celebrate such a significant 51st anniversary with a grand success.

Title / Game

Winner

Score

Runner up

Score

Total teams

Football Grand Final

 Yuendumu

8.5 = 53 

Papunya 

4.5 = 29 

 14

Softball Grand Final

 Papunya

 15

Laramba 

 7

 14

Basketball Womens Grand Final

 Lajamanu

24 

Yuendumu 

19 

 13

Basketball Mens Grand Final

Yuendumu Redtails

33 

Lajamanu Knights 

23 

 12

 

Each morning during the sports weekend, the community leaders and the Sports Conveners sat together to make a plan for the day and everyone made a joint commitment to run the sports weekend peacefully, fairly and making it a grand success.

On Monday evening there was dance, song and speeches at the footy oval to recognize, acknowledge and respect a retiring community mental health worker Cecil ‘Croc’ Johnson who is also an active member of Yuendumu Mediation and Justice Committee. The ceremony was a well-deserved public recognition of his life's work. 

The event was proudly supported by community members, all local community organisations and service providers and individuals who all contributed and worked together with the Sports Committee to make it a success. The Yuendumu Sports Committee Convenors and members performed an absolutely brilliant job at leading each of the events and creating such a wonderful time for everyone.

The Yuendumu Sports Weekend, also known as Yuendumu Olympics, is such a big and important event for remote Central Australian communities.  Yuendumu is a proud community to keep its historical record.

The Council was excited to be able to deliver on a range of facility upgrades in time for the Yuendumu sports weekend.  These grants allowed for the construction of a new change room, including power, water and sewer, and refurbishment of the existing change rooms, repair of the oval boundary fence, installation of grandstands and shade structures, new goal posts and scoreboard and floodlights.  The project was made possible through the generous support of the Northern Territory Government’s Special Purpose Grants program.  As you can see from the photos the facilities were put to good use and provide great assets for the community of Yuendumu.