Milestone Wulanda moment

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Lechelle Earl, owner/editor

Milestone Wulanda moment

Mount Gambier City Council will officially take over the Wulanda Recreation and Convention Centre tomorrow (Wednesday), however its grand opening has not yet been scheduled.

In October last year Council’s City Infrastructure general manager Barbara Cernovskis had earmarked February 1 as the grand opening.

However, no official announcements have yet been made.

In the meantime, the centre has been making waves since its ‘soft’ opening on December 16.

When the doors swung open to the community for its preview weekend, more than 4000 people took part in tours and swimming sessions.

In the first 30 days of operation the centre has recorded 10,978 casual visits and has secured 1640 members.

Its inaugural event was the South Australian Country Swimming Championships held over four days from January 5 to 8.

During that time an estimated 2000 attendees watched 437 participants from 29 swim clubs.

Olympic medallist and world champion Madi Wilson opened the 2023 Country Swimming Championships.

“It’s crazy for me to be here and see this facility. It’s absolutely incredible,” Ms Wilson said.

“You are so lucky to be able to swim in a facility like this – it is definitely closing the gap between country and city.”

Head contractor for the project Badge Constructions took possession of Olympic Park on September 28, 2020 with demolition and civil works commencing a month later.

Although return of possession to council will occur tomorrow, Ms Cernovskis said there were still final touches to be made.

“There is still the unfinished works in terms of retractable seating – these will be installed by the end of April and then September is when the fixed seating on the entertainment courts will be installed,” she said.

“For all intents and purposes it will be our building in total by Wednesday.”

In the past week barricades have been removed to allow access to the courts and final touches to the surface, including curing and line-marking, has been completed.

“Nothing has been foreshadowed as any challenges,” Ms Cernovskis said.

The community will have full access to all courts, including local basketball teams the Castec Rural and OneFortyOne Pioneers, who have their first game booked for April 23.

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