In a major boon for the region, the Manly Sea Eagles and the Gold Coast Titans will face in round 6 of the NRL Premiership season at Mudgee's Glen Willow stadium on Saturday April 17, 2021.
This comes after the date of the 2021 Charity Shield was locked in recently for February 27.
The Eagles will step out onto the green for their first home game in Mudgee against the Queensland side who last played at Glen Willow in 2013 in the first NRL premiership game they thrashed Parramatta 42-4.
Mid-Western Regional Council mayor, Des Kennedy said Manly coming to the region is a 'win win' for all, especially given the difficulty of bringing another NRL team out to the region.
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"It's been a hard slog to get someone to replace St George who we've had for two years, it's always difficult to get the city teams to the bush as they typically give up home game advantage to be here," he said.
"The game they're playing here would normally be at Brookvale Oval so we appreciate it and thank Manly very much for being receptive and also the state government for helping fund the event.
"Only six weeks before round six we will have the Rabbitohs and Dragons here for the Charity Shield so it'll be a rugby league bonanza."
Cr Kennedy added that not only will the game be of benefit to the sizable rugby league community, but also for the youth who will benefit from seeing successful athletes in person.
"It's a great thing for our youth, it encourages them to be the best version of themselves that may very well be channeled through the sporting world," he said.
"The kids will get to see Jake and Tom Trbojevic and other rugby league greats when they visit the schools, that is something they will never forget."
"I think that it's very exciting to see events coming back to regions after the year that we've had, obviously, there might be some different framework around how that's delivered and what the capacities may be."Mudgee Region Tourism CEO, Cara George
Manly's last encounter with the Titans was in round 19 at Brookvale Oval where the Titans dismantled the Sea Eagles with a 42-24 result off the back of three-in-a-row wins.
Sea Eagles CEO Stephen Humphreys said the club are eager to play at Glen Willow and encouraged the team's supporters to make the trip.
"It is exciting that we can play a home match in our 75th year in a beautiful town like Mudgee as part of the NRL's plan to take premier rugby league back to the bush,'' Humphreys said.
"I encourage as many Sea Eagles supporters to make the trip to Mudgee to not only get behind our team, but to also support this great regional town by enjoying some of their fine tourist attractions."
The last time Manly played a home match in regional NSW was in 2015 at Lavington Sports Ground where Tom Trbojevic scored two tries in his NRL debut.
The Manly Warringah Sea Eagles will take on the Gold Coast Titans on April 17, 2021 at 3pm at Glen Willow Stadium.
Mudgee Region Tourism CEO, Cara George said it's exciting to see an event like this come back to the region after a year which saw consistent cancellations.
"I think that it's very exciting to see events coming back to regions after the year that we've had, obviously, there might be some different framework around how that's delivered and what the capacities may be," she said.
"But I just think it's still important for communities to celebrate and have entertainment and celebrate the sports that they love. So I think we're really excited to see that level of activity coming back to our region, when we've had a year of most events being canceled.
"It's definitely going to be a positive thing, keeping the Mudgee region at top of mind for travelers with these kind of promotion is excellent.
"We're just excited that we can have these great events and bring visitors again and have locals enjoy themselves."
During the pandemic, Mudgee has seen growth in visitors travelling to the region. From July to September the Mid-Western Region was up 47% on overnight visitation compared to the same time last year.
"I want to say that we're very grateful for our local community, and how responsive and accepting they have been of having visitors to the region," Cara said.