Thousands of sports people from around Australia will make their way to Armidale in October for a brand new event.
The Armidale Spring Games featuring three sports and various age groups will grace the fields around town.
Under 15s boys' and girls' hockey, over 35s men's and open women's soccer along with over 50s men's cricket will be contested from October 1 to 4.
The event was announced on Wednesday and while planning is still in its infancy, Armidale Regional Council mayor Ian Tiley is excited by the prospect of showcasing the area.
"We are talking about 50 plus teams from all over Australia coming to this event," he said.
"I understand the event is guaranteed for two years so it will be a great boost to Armidale.
"We have done it tough, as we all know, through COVID and bushfires, but now we have a chance to get on with a wonderful sporting event.
"I am really looking forward to the October long weekend and the Spring Games."
Hockey New England president Lisa Whitty also welcomed the news.
"For hockey it is massive," she said.
"We haven't had too many opportunities for some great carnivals here.
"We have just hosted the under 15s boys championships so this is running on from that so it will be great to see the massive amount of talent that we have got in the area and in the wider region."
She believes the Spring Games will play a huge role in the development of the region's young talent.
"All the kids at that age are extremely competitive so to get them all on one field is massive," Whitty said.
"We have got some extremely good, talented players here.
"We have had 60 players in our own region make state and national teams here so we are extremely competitive on the hockey circuits.
The Spring Games comes about through a $145,000 grant from the Federal Government as part of their $10 million Regional Tourism Bushfire Recovery Grants program.
Teams from around the country will be asked to submit their applications to play through the Spring Games website.
More information will be released as it comes to hand.
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