The Stawell Gift is Australia’s oldest athletics event, highlighted by 120m gift races for men and women taking place annually on Easter Monday.
The event features handicapped races from 70m to 3200m. The main 120m Gift heats are traditionally conducted on Easter Saturday, with the semi-final and final held on Easter Monday. The winning male and female athletes each take home a prize of $40,000.
The event is conducted each Easter in Stawell, located in the Grampians in Victoria, 2 hours and 45 minutes north-west of Melbourne. The event ‘puts the town on the map’ each year, generating significant economic impact for the community, as well as exposure through live broadcast.
The Stawell Gift was first held in 1878 at the end of the Victorian gold rush and has been held annually, except for 1942-1945 due to World War II and 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The event was previously conducted by the Stawell Athletics Club, until the Victorian government established an independent Committee of Management in 2020 to address governance and expertise risks that threatened the event’s survival.
The Stawell Gift was awarded a World Athletics Heritage plaque in 2019.