One big push.
That’s what the Bendigo Bank Spirit is asking from itself as it tries to claim a historic Women’s National Basketball League championship.
And that’s what the club is asking of local businesses before it hosts the grand final at Bendigo Stadium next Sunday.
The Spirit needs almost $60,000 dollars to help fund temporary stands to accommodate Basketball Australia’s minimum requirement of 3000 spectators.
About $50,000 of that has been pledged, including $25,000 from Bendigo Stadium and $10,000 from the City of Greater Bendigo.
Yesterday, Victorian Minister for Sport and Recreation Hugh Delahunty announced a further $10,000 in funding from the state government.
Donations of several thousand dollars have also come from Bendigo Community Telco, Jimmy Possum, Federal Liberal Party candidate Greg Bickley and Labor’s Member for Bendigo East Jacinta Allan.
With about $10,000 still needed, the Spirit is hoping a few more businesses chip in.
“Having committed to make that investment to ensure that the event will be held in Bendigo we’re hoping some Bendigo businesses might support us by providing funds to help meet that cost,” Spirit chairman Jeremi Moule said.
“We’re hoping that we can get as close to the cost of the $60,000 as we can, that reduces the financial burden the club needs to carry.”
Meanwhile, the Spirit has teamed with two of Bendigo’s other major sporting organisations for a unique celebration.
The Spirit, the Bendigo International Cycling Madison and the Bendigo Jockey Club’s Golden Mile will all be highlighted at a special Gallic Club dinner on Thursday, March 7.
The dinner at the Bendigo Jockey Club’s Silks Function Centre, hosted by Olympic gold medallist Scott McGrory OAM, will showcase local and international cyclists competing in the Madison carnival from March 7-10.
Spirit players will attend the dinner ahead of its grand final against either Dandenong or Townsville.
The Golden Mile on March 16 sees Bendigo hosting a meeting with $1 million in prizemoney and bonuses.
The sporting bodies have pulled together to offer a multi-event ticket which will be one of several auction items at the dinner.
Proceeds from the evening will support the Madison committee fund-raising and the Bendigo Spirit’s operational costs.
Tickets can be bought by contacting the Bendigo Jockey Club on 5448 4209