The State of Origin opener is set to be a bumper show for regional Queensland, with the state government confirming a host of music stars will perform at the match.
Birds of Tokyo, Jessica Mauboy and Busby Marou will be headed north to Townsville, to perform in the hours leading up to game one.
They’ll play in the Fan Zone, in the hopes of bringing a party atmosphere to arriving crowds.
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Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk believes the acts will help deliver strong economic benefits for tourism and hospitality businesses in the region.
“World class events inject millions of dollars into our economy and support local jobs. This is one of the best line-ups ever assembled in Townsville,” the Premier said.
“When we secured this historic State of Origin for Townsville, we said we would make it into so much more than just a game of football and that’s exactly what we are doing.
“We want to make this week one that North Queenslanders will never forget.
“By working closely with Townsville City Council, we’ve secured three of Australia’s best acts and we’re ensuring the Fan Zone will give every supporter the chance to make a day of it and soak up the atmosphere.
“Tickets sold out in less than an hour. This proves that footy fans from across Australia are keen to travel to Townsville to experience rugby league heartland for themselves.
“We know the game itself will inject $7 million into the local economy. By securing other events like this, we’re ensuring even more money flows into local businesses, helping to rebuild the North Queensland economy.”
Member for Townsville Scott Stewart hopes the stellar line up will entice fans into the area early, to spend big at restaurants and cafes.
“Already hotels in the CBD and on Magnetic Island have seen a huge increase in demand which is great news, but now we want to ensure other sectors of the economy also feel the benefit.
“And what better way to promote a great North Queensland getaway than combining a State of Origin game, a world-class line-up of music and a visit to beautiful Magnetic Island.”
ARIA award-winning artist Jessica Mauboy is excited to be headed up north.
“Thank you Townsville for inviting me to be a part of a momentous night of entertainment, in what will be a historic State of Origin match,” she said.
“It is truly an honour to perform for you all and I can’t wait to get back on stage and perform some fan favourites.
“I’m so excited to share the stage with an incredible line up of artists, in what will be an amazing night of live music and sport.”