A beloved Christmas toy run by motorcyclists for underprivileged kids, a family-friendly Chinese New Year celebration and a month-long junior cricket carnival have all received support from Newcastle City Council's annual grants and sponsorship program.
Nine events spanning sport, culture and charity have shared in $100,000 under Council's Event Sponsorship Program for 2017/18.
Supported by a $10,000 events sponsorship, around 10,000 motorcyclists all toting toys will be cheered on by 10,000 spectators as part of the 40th
annual Newcastle Toy Run from Stockton to Wickham on Sunday 3 December.
The Toy Run provides toys and support for disadvantaged families across the Hunter and has raised more than $250,000 in cash over the past five years.
"I'd like to congratulate all recipients of this year's event sponsorships," Council's Interim CEO, Jeremy Bath, said.
"Together with our economic development sponsorship and community assistance grants, this year Council is providing funding to projects and events for some 205,000 people and generating an expected economic benefit in excess of $14.2 million.
"The Newcastle Toy Run is the oldest annual event of its kind in Australia and Council, on behalf of the region, is very happy to financially support this great cause in its 40th
Bikers for Kids Charity president Daryn Young said participants were "so thankful to receive this grant".
"This funding, along with the support of local businesses, means we can create a milestone celebration that will generate more toys and donations for kids in need than ever before," he said.
The Rotary Club of Newcastle received a $12,500 event sponsorship to stage the Light Up Newcastle Lantern Festival, a celebration of Chinese New Year and lantern walk from Camp Shortland to Honeysuckle on Saturday 24 February.
"The event is a free family-friendly celebration of Chinese New year together with a charity fundraiser through the sale of the Chinese lanterns made by Newcastle Rotary Clubs," Event Director Maree Gleeson said.
"The Honeysuckle Precinct will be turned into a mini-Chinatown with Chinese decorations and entertainment, cultural activities and food vendors before a fireworks display lights up the sky around 9pm."
The Australian Bowlriding champs next February will have council's support.
The Celebration of Cricket received a $10,000 sponsorship to help host 400 young cricketers from Sydney and as far afield as the north coast in January.
The youngsters will contest in three separate competitions made up of 60-plus matches and including twilight T20 fixtures.
Events sponsorship also included:
- Australian Bowlriding Championship - $20,000. National skateboard competition at Empire Park on 26/27 February 2018.
- Live That/ Live at the Foreshore - $20,000. Two-day usic festival This That (younger demographic) and Live at the Foreshore at Wickham Park on 4 and 5 November 2017.
- This is Not Art - $20,000. Four-day arts festival at various locations from 28 September - 1 October 2017. 2017 marks its 20th anniversary.
- Water Polo - $5,000. Three national water polo fixtures at Queens Wharf from Jan to May 2018
- King of Concrete - $5,000. State/national-level skateboarding competition at Empire Park.
- Newcastle Fashion Weekend - $7,500. Two-day fashion weekend at Newcastle Race Course.
In other allocations under council's broader annual grants and sponsorship program, Council's 2017 Economic Development Sponsorship Program allocated $100,000 to help 10 organisations stage exciting events or projects that will help boost the Hunter's economy.
And 23 community-minded organisations have shared in $70,000 worth of community assistance grants.