Mark Ricciuto Statue
The ‘Roo Statue’
The ‘Roo Statue’ will be a bronze sculpture of Mark ‘Roo’ Ricciuto. Depicting his unique kicking style, the statue will be erected in the parklands near the Waikerie Football Oval where Mark’s career began. The Roo Statue will be a fitting tribute to a home-grown legend and one of footy’s all-time greats. The $150,000 cost of the project includes the ‘Roo Statue’ plus all installation and landscaping costs.
Please note the “Mini Roo” depicted in photos on this site is a replica of what the real thing will look like!!
Why the ‘Roo Statue’
As well as recognising Mark’s wonderful achievements, importantly the Roo Statue will put Waikerie on the map, encouraging travellers on the Sturt Highway to stop in town. Waikerie’s local economy is very much focused on agriculture with vineyards, citrus, avocados, almonds and broad acre farming. However fluctuations of drought and commodity prices means tourism is becoming increasingly important to the town’s future.
The ‘Roo Statue’ will encourage visitors to the home of Mark Ricciuto. Families will kick the footy on the beautiful lawns and have photos with ‘Roo’, and while they are there, they can enjoy some lunch, a coffee or visit some of the other wonderful attractions Waikerie has to offer.
About the ‘Roo’ – Mark Ricciuto
Mark Ricciuto is a legend of the AFL. In a career that spanned 312 games for the Adelaide Crows including the 1998 Grand Final, Roo achieved many accolades including the 2003 Brownlow Medal alongside Nathan Buckley and Adam Goodes. He was picked eight times in the all Australian side, twice as Captain, and was the Crows Best & Fairest in ’98, ’03 and ’04. Roo is an inductee to the AFL, SANFL and the Adelaide Crows Hall of fame making him one of the most decorated players of his era. In his post playing career, he remains a much loved and highly influential figure in the AFL as a board member of the Adelaide Crows and through his media interests as a breakfast radio broadcaster for TripleM and footy commentator for Fox Footy.
The Waikerie Connection
Mark was born and raised in Waikerie on his family’s fruit block, and the community retains a special place in his heart. Mark often recalls his early footy career with the Waikerie Football Club, and the enormous commitment he and his parents Murray and Carolyn made to help him reach his AFL dream.
When Mark retired from AFL at the end of 2007, the very next year he returned to play footy with the Waikerie Magpies, helping them to win the premiership in the Club’s centenary year. This was Marks second premiership with Waikerie, with his first being way back in 1991 when he played A Grade football as a 16 year old. On that day he was best on ground!! Click on the photo’s above for more pictures of Mark playing in the 2008 Riverland Football League Grand Final for Waikerie.
About the Sculptor – Ken Martin
Ken Martin is a leading South Australian sculptor with a particularly good eye for immortalising sporting legends. Ken’s most famous creation is without doubt his life size bronze sculpture of three time Melbourne Cup winner Makybe Diva, who now proudly stands overlooking the Port Lincoln foreshore.
As well as Makybe, Ken has also been commissioned to sculpt South Australian cricket legends Darren Lehmann, Jason Gillespie and Barry Robran, who can all be seen at the Adelaide Oval.
In June 2015, Ken was featured on Channel 7’s SA Life program at his studio in Port Lincoln. During the interview, Ken gives a sneak peak into the creation of the “Roo Statue”. Check out Channel 7’s SA Life feature on Ken here.
Please support the Roo Statue and donate today. Your contribution to this community driven project will ensure a legend is honoured and Waikerie is on the map!