WHAT’S IN STORE FOR ‘24 – Interview with Cr Murray Emerson

Date: 15th January 2024

As the pro running season reaches its mid-way point, we asked Councillor Murray Emerson, Chair of Stawell Gift Event Management what visitors can expect at Australia’s pre-eminent pro race this Easter and just why all roads lead to Stawell.

“The Powercor Stawell Gift is the most prestigious professional race on the running calendar each year and the desire of the competitors to run and win here is enormous,” said Murray.

“Being one of the last meets for the Australian athletics season and with such an incredible history, it is everyone’s goal to have their names etched in the tradition of the Stawell Gift.  Of course, the race being one of the richest professional foot races in the world is also a huge attraction.”

Stawell Gift Event Management puts on the Easter carnival in conjunction with the Stawell Athletic Club and this will be the 142nd running of the famous race series.

“Our goal is to put on a terrific show, provide spectacular races in a safe environment and enjoyable atmosphere for everyone that attends. We want people to have a great time both at the track and in our wonderful local shire, said Murray.

“This year we are promoting the Fashions day on Saturday and asking people to come in vibrant colours particularly reds and blacks, two of our handicapping colours. 

“A new innovation is the Athletes Village on the hill on the western side of the arena.  There will be marquees for the runners and their teams featuring a wellness centre with ice baths, massages and areas in our new building for relaxation. The Corporate  area will go to a new level this year as we increase the experience for those who are attending.

The economic benefits to the Northern Grampians Shire cannot be underestimated as visitors flock to Stawell and surrounding towns at Easter. 

“The population increases not only during the Powercor Stawell Gift weekend but that also carries forward to when people return to our region to visit and enjoy our wonderful area.

“As always there are numerous other attractions in our region. The Great Western Rodeo on Good Friday, the Stawell Race Club meeting on Sunday, Stawell’s Main Street Extravaganza on Saturday morning and the Fun Run on Sunday. Not to mention fabulous food, wine and numerous nature and activity walks in the spectacular Grampians mountains.  

“Something for everyone. Come and enjoy.  I am sure you will want to return.”


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