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Kowanyama Community Rugby League Carnival kicks off

The Kowanyama Community Rugby League Carnival is being held this weekend to officially open the new community sports precinct.

Those in attendance will also recognise the passing of respected elder May Smiller, who died this year at the age of 105.

The carnival will be contested by five teams from Lower Gulf / Mornington Island region to Coen, Pormpuraaw, as well as players from Townsville and Cairns.

The event, which has been organised by Kevin Bell, Acting Executive Manager Community Services at Kowanyama Aboriginal Shire Council, will be run by Kowanyama Aboriginal Shire Council and supported by the Sports Recreation Association PBC of Kowanyama.

Bell (pictured above when he played for the Northern United team on Thursday Island earlier this year) said they were intending on this being an annual event and would like to build on it into the future.

He acknowledged the Department of Local Government, Racing and Multicultural Affairs, Sports and Recreation Services Department of Housing and Public Works and Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet for their role in putting on the event.

"The carnival means so much to the community, it’s been a number of years since they had the opportunity to bring people together and showcase rugby league talents in beautiful Kowanyama," Bell said.

"At present, there is a real buzz around the community and there will also be a women’s softball competition and sports for the kids."

Teams and visitors will start to arrive at Kowanyama today (Friday, September 13).

A community barbecue will be held at the multipurpose centre hosted by the Kowanyama Minhkular football team. This will feature special performances by the Community of Kowanyama to celebrate NAIDOC with traditional dance performed and music by local artists.

QRL sanctioned rugby league playoff lineup will be drawn by Mayor Michael Yam with a special guest visitor (to be announced).

The program will be as follows:

Saturday, September 14

9.30am - official opening of sports grounds

10.30am - QRL sanctioned rugby league competition to commence Round 1

10.30am - 11.30am - Game 1

11.30am - 12.30pm - Game 2

12.30pm - 1.30pm - Game 3

1.30pm - interval - teams and referees to have break

2pm - children’s games to be held during interval - (League Tag)

3pm - Round 2 

3pm - 4pm - Game 1

4pm - 5pm - Game 2

5pm - 6pm - Game 3

6pm - pack up / clean up, announcement of final four teams and semi final draw.

Sunday, September 15

10am - QRL sanctioned rugby league semi finals commence

10am - semi finals (1) Team 1 v Team 4

11am - semi finals (2) Team 2 v Team 3

12 noon - children’s games to be held during interval - (League Tag)

1pm - QRL sanctioned rugby league grand final commences

1pm - Winner semi final 1 v Winner semi final 2

2pm - official presentation to champions and closing of event