THE Burnie New Year's Day carnival has received a double boost with less than three months out from the iconic event.
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FINANCIAL BOOST: Simon Fitzpatrick, in the pink, wins last year's Burnie Gift at the Burnie Athletic Club carnival, which has received a big boost with existing naming rights sponsor Caterpillar Underground Mining re-signing for three years and increasing its financial support. Picture: Stuart Wilson.
Existing naming rights sponsor Caterpillar Underground Mining has re-signed for the next three years, but has also significantly increased its financial support of the event.
New Burnie Athletic Club president Ricky Aitken welcomed the sponsorship and said it was an important step in continuing to reinvigorate the carnival.
"Last year we set ourselves the task of rejuvenating the carnival and we were successful on many fronts," he said.
"January 1 will be the 129th running of the carnival and we are committed to continuing to see the event prosper and grow - something we achieved last year."
The 2015 New Year's Day carnival saw a crowd of about 4200 flock to West Park, a significant increase in attendance to the rain-marred 2014 edition.
Teenage sprint sensation Jack Hale was the main drawcard.
Mr Aitken said one of the key aims of the organising committee was to re-establish the Burnie Men's Gift as one of the country's top three premier handicap running events, alongside the Stawell Gift in Victoria and the Bay Sheffield in Adelaide.
Mr Aitken said organisers were also keen to grow the woodchopping program with more events in the central arena.
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Mr Aitken said it was important the club worked with other clubs, the Sports Carnivals Association of Tasmania and carnivals promoter Epic Events and Marketing to enhance the overall image of the carnivals series.
"The Burnie Athletic Club and the New Year's Day carnival are historic Tasmanian institutions, which must grow and prosper," he said.
"We need to conduct the affairs of the club in a professional manner supported by strong corporate governance and be financially independent."