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Commonwealth Games an opportunity to showcase regions

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Mitchell and Macedon Ranges shire councils are calling for the community’s best ideas in a bid to attract Commonwealth Games events in 2026.

With Victoria committed to hosting the games across four regional hubs in Bendigo, Ballarat, Geelong and Gippsland, council officials said there would be plenty of opportunity for nearby regions to get involved.

The State Government launched a campaign for communities to submit their ideas last month, and Mitchell Shire Council chief executive Brett Luxford said it presented a chance to showcase the region.

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“For Mitchell Shire, it’s an opportunity to highlight our picturesque landscapes, welcoming community and growing economy,” he said.

“From rivers and mountains to cafes and wineries, from rail trails to boutique shops, Mitchell has it all.

“Situated in the heart of Victoria, with an abundance of attractions and hidden gems, we’re the perfect destination for day trips or short stays during the Commonwealth Games.

“With the Victorian Government’s call for ideas campaign, I encourage anyone with a big idea that could support the Commonweath Games and celebrate our region to put their suggestion forward.”

Macedon Ranges Shire Council chief executive Bernie O’Sullivan said suggestions could go beyond hosting sports and could fall under the umbrellas of culture, education, business innovation, live sites, legacy, and partnerships and collaboration.

“We encourage our community to think of events or activities that could support the Commonwealth Games and associated celebrations, and that could be hosted right here in the Macedon Ranges,” he said.

“Whether it be sporting, training or cultural events, or ideas that utilise our facilities and natural assets, this could really give an economic and tourism boost to the region, not only during the games but for a long time to come.”

Mr O’Sullivan said council would make its own submission to the government with ideas including hosting sporting and cultural events and using Macedon Ranges landmarks as backdrops.

“Our stunning natural scenery and vibrant villages make the Macedon Ranges an ideal location for supporting and augmenting the Commonwealth Games experience,” he said.

“We are really excited to see what we can contribute to this world-class event.”

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