Little Athletics was introduced in Queensland in 1976 after its successful formation for junior athletes in Victoria in the 1960s.
Maroochy Little Athletics Centre was the first Centre to be formed on the Sunshine Coast in September 1981.
Members of the Inaugural Committee were: Centre Manager – David Blake; Secretary – Alison Quirke; Treasurer – Heather Love; Equipment & Programming – Graham Lukins .
Subsequent Centres were formed on the Coast during the 1980’s as the sport grew in popularity to numbers over 600. Members from the Maroochy committee assisted in forming Centres at Nambour, Caloundra, Maleny & Bli Bli enabling families to attend Centres in their own geographic areas. Registrations on the Coast have now reached 1100 with additional Centres at Glasshouse, University & Noosa forming over the years.
Maroochy commenced their inaugural season at the Maroochydore Primary school grounds where 189 athletes ranging from 5 – 12yrs (eldest age group then) registered for that first season. In 1982 they moved to Maroochydore Rugby League grounds on Wises Road then in 1992 they moved to their current grounds at Maroochydore High School. A special agreement had to be sought from the Qld Education Dept to install the lights to enable night competition and in the late 1990’s, in liaison with the school, they built their own equipment shed and canteen after operating for several years from 2 shipping containers.
Registrations now range from age groups Under 6s to Under 17s and include Tiny Tots (3 & 4 year olds) Maroochy caters for the full age range. In 1990 Maroochy sought “dual” affiliation with Qld Athletics to enable the older athletes (13yrs+) and senior community members to compete together under the banner of Maroochy Association however this affiliation was not continued in the 2000s. Membership at Little Athletics division remained steady throughout at 230-250 athletes.
Community Benefit funds & Govt. Grants in 2014 allowed the Centre (in conjunction with the MSHS) to install a synthetic long jump facility, Shot Put & Discus pads were renewed and permanent cages were installed on Discus. In 2019 the lights were upgraded to LED utilising another Grant.
Little Athletic Centres are run entirely by volunteers and it is thanks to the dedication of past members and the support of the community businesses that Maroochy has been able to provide an excellent sporting opportunity for young athletes on the Sunshine Coast to learn their basic skills of “Run, Jump & Throw” and then to continue to State levels and in some cases, beyond.
Thank you to all those who have chosen to take the journey with us.
FAMILY, FUN & FITNESS