18th November 2016 Cultural Precinct Re-Opening
Julia Creek’s new $2.2 million Community and Cultural Precinct officially re-opened 18th November, thanks to $1.2 million from the Palaszczuk Government committed in June 2015. McKinlay Shire Council committed $600,000 along with an industry contribution of $400,000 from South32.
The Civic Centre it’s self was officially re-opening by Mayor Belinda Murphy , South 32 - Acting Vice President of Operations Grant Eggington and Principal Corporate Affairs Graeme Nielsen and representing the Premier & Deputy Premier was the Assistant Minister of State Assisting the Premier Jennifer Howard.
The revamp of the community hall and arts and cultural centre not only stimulated local jobs and local spending to the value $1.2 million but is now an amazing venue for all the community to enjoy.
The new precinct will be a hub for tourists and locals who will once again be able to host their annual events and local arts and crafts gatherings. Major benefits to Council include being able to play host to regular industry events as MITEZ meetings, agricultural events, CEO conferences and Tourism meetings and symposiums along with now being able to entice regional events for local government and industry.
The refurbished centre has new flooring, stage AV equipment, air-conditioning and an outdoor patio area, as well as revamped hall amenities, kitchen and bar area, and the arts and cultural buildings attached to the complex.
The project was completed on behalf of Council by Richardson’s Building Contracts a Townsville based business. Mayor Murphy noted “ I am extremely happy that Richardson’s spend with local contractors and business exceed our tender target of $1 million to $1.2 million. It certainly demonstrates what can be achieved locally and was a great stimulus to our shire during the previous months”
Situated just behind the hall stands the newly refurbished Jan Eckord Centre, the cultural hub of the shire. Utilising part of the Federal Governments Drought Infrastructure funding the centre has been renovated and is now fit for purpose for community. Officially cutting the ribbon on the day for the Jan Eckford Centre was McKinlay Shire’s Cultural Association President Aileen Gabbert, Mayor Belinda Murphy and Senator Ian Macdonald
The hall’s first official event was the evening of the re-opening with a grand Gala Dinner showcasing local beef and red claw with the main event being the well known Australian and Global Act as seen on TV ‘Soul Mystique’, who provided the nights entertainment with their innovative magical dance transformation act.
Councillor Murphy stated of the days proceedings. “What an amazing day for our shire with three wonderful projects now open for the benefit of community and the region”