The spirit of the Games is set to arrive in Tamworth

MAKING HISTORY: Tamworth mayor Col Murray and Queen's Baton Relay media organiser Keri Algar ahead of Wednesday's Tamworth leg. Photo: Ella Smith.

MAKING HISTORY: Tamworth mayor Col Murray and Queen's Baton Relay media organiser Keri Algar ahead of Wednesday's Tamworth leg. Photo: Ella Smith.

If there’s one thing I know for sure, it is this; we can’t all be Olympic or Commonwealth standard athletes (no surprises there), but we can all share in the spirit of the competition.

On the eve of the 21st Commonwealth Games to be held on the Gold Coast during early April, we are being invited to take part in what will be an emotional experience.

Today, Wednesday January 31, the Queen’s Baton Relay (QBR) will arrive in our region.

Coonabarabran, Gunnedah and Tamworth will all welcome the symbol of the games, before it heads up the highway to Armidale on Thursday, February 1.  

Of course, it’s already come a very long way.

The baton, which carries a personal message from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II that calls the Commonwealth’s athletes to come together in peaceful and friendly competition, started its journey in March last year from Buckingham Palace, in England.

Since then it has traveled through 52 countries to arrive here – a journey over 388 days and more than 230,000 kilometres.

Across Australia 3,800 Batonbearers are helping to share the dream of the ‘friendly Games’ as part of the QBR.

In Tamworth, 16 of our community stalwarts have been selected to take part in the relay, carrying the hopes and dreams of our athletes to the finish line.

Coming from all walks of life - school students, charity advocates, sportspeople, community volunteers and country music identities – the Batonbearers, each and every one of them, recognise what an honour it is to have been chosen to carry the source of such inspiration.

And we should all be there to cheer them on.

As part of the event – and aside from the relay through the streets – there will be a community celebration in Bicentennial Park, on the grassed area between the Regional Playground and the war memorials precinct.

That kicks off at 5pm, before the baton arrives at 5.30pm.

It’s the prefect opportunity for this community to show the rest of the world what we’re made of, and to take our place in history.

It’s something we will be able to tell the kids about.

And in this, Tamworth’s 200th year, it is a fitting celebration to bring it all together.

How exciting indeed!

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