Stadium ship shape
BUNDABERG Basketball Inc's newly renamed home WIN Stadium is barely recognisable from the disaster zone it was in the wake of the Christmas-New Year floods.
After being covered in up to two metres of floodwaters for days, the clean-up operation took weeks and the damage bill was enormous.
But the floor has been repaired, sanded and revarnished, the old seats have been replaced with impressive maroon and white seating, most of the furnishings have been replaced, and basketball is back on the courts.
Bundaberg Radiology Bulls coach and Queensland Basketball League (QBL) committee member Adam Curran, said they could not have recovered so quickly except for government grants and the outstanding support of a number of Bundaberg businesses and countless volunteers.
He said one company which made an enormous contribution was Bunnings Warehouse, which not only co-ordinated the supply of many of the materials needed to replace the water ravaged seats, walls and other fixtures, and the paint, they also provided eight of their staff members for a day last week to paint.
Bunnings Bundaberg complex manager Leo Trapp said they were delighted to help out.
“We wanted to get kids and adults back to the sport they love and help get the community back on track,” Trapp said.
“We have a lot of staff who also like to help out and what better program to support than Bundaberg Basketball which was just devastated during the floods.
“One of our team members plays and we picked up the phone and offered our support with whatever we could do, and we met up with Adam and he had plenty on the go.
“But it has been a bit of a joint-project with Murchie Constructions and Kev Lammi, of Nature's Floors, also supplying a lot of valuable materials.”
The stadium came alive again for the first time in the new year with junior fixtures returning on Friday night after the first seven weeks of competition were played at Shalom College.
Senior fixtures were set to follow last night. The Bulls and Bears are the public face of Bundaberg basketball, and now they are back on their home court, it is full steam ahead for the start of the new QBL season on May 7.
But fans will have to wait until Sunday, May 15, to see them in action for the first time against Gold Coast Rollers. While it will be a tough game, after what Bundaberg basketball has been through, Curran wants to make it a special day for the sport in the city.
Curran said Bunnings and everyone else who had helped would be thanked in a special fundraising game on April 30, one week before the season kick-off on the road against Rockhampton.
The Bulls are assembling an impressive roster, headed by Will Shackleford, who returned for his second season with the club last week, and fellow American star Matt Hanson.