Kids taste big time sports
Kids taste big time sports
Big names in New Zealand sports will rub shoulders with kids who dream to ‘make it’ at the annual Pelorus Trust Stadium Sports Festival being held on Tuesday 12 March.
Current Silver Fern Te Huinga Reo Selby-Rickit is taking time out from training to help deliver netball to the 600 primary school children sampling 18 different sports at the Westpac Stadium in Wellington.
She will be joined by former Black Cap wicketkeeper Chris Nevin, former Silver Fern Sandra Edge, current Wellington Firebirds Illi Tugaga and Barry Rhodes among other sporting legends ‘playing’ with thechildren for the day.
“An extremely strong level of coaches, former internationals, professional coaches and experience will be on hand to give the kids a taste of different sports,” says organiser David Fa’atafa, Sport Wellington.
“It’s exciting these sporting legends are coming together to expose their codes at a grass-roots level.”The tenth annual Pelorus Trust Stadium Sports Festival is also a celebration that 6000 children from across the Wellington Region will have experienced a huge number of sporting codes at the same sports ground, during one day. This year a record 60 schools applied to attend the regional event, of which only20 spots were available.
Organised by Sport Wellington, the Pelorus Trust Stadium Sports Festival aims to give school children opportunity to have a pitch at sports they might not generally experience. It is hoped they will find a sport they enjoy and want to take up, or develop a taste for a variety of sports rather than specialising in one particular code early in life.
The excitement of the historic first Australian Football League (AFL) competition outside of Australia will add to the energy of the children sampling the sports at ‘stations’ around the Westpac Stadium.
Budding AFL juniors can learn the steps in the very stadium where the St Kilda Saints will take on the Sydney Swans on Anzac Day.
New Zealand Hawks member Kade Riddell (a Year 12 student at Hutt Valley High School) will be on hand to help deliver the AFL taster.
A new sport showcased this year is volleyball, which is increasing in popularity among children according to a recent Sport NZ survey. Volleyball will add to the diversity of other traditional codes of netball,rugby, football, cricket and hockey as well as the more unfamiliar sports such as futsal and ultimate frisbee. The traditional Maori game of Horo Hopu, as well as gym sports and karate will also be available for the children to try.
Fa’atafa says the day is a festival of ‘having a go’ at new sports, of being active and will include some friendly competition. The regional event has become so popular it has spawned satellite sports festivals in Lower Hutt and Wellington City, which will give more local schools greater opportunity to take part.
Wellington Regional Stadium Trust provides the hallowed grounds of Westpac Stadium for the day to‘give back’ to the regional community. Sport Wellington also acknowledges the help of Pelorus Trust for its huge support of the festival and Pak N Save Kilbirnie for feeding the army of volunteers helping.
The Pelorus Trust Stadium Sports Festival begins at 10am and finishes at 2pm, with a lunch break between 12.10 and 12.40pm.