Blackburn Vikings Basketball
In 2017, The Blackburn Vikings Basketball Association and the Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club merged to form a single unified club - Blackburn Vikings Basketball.
The Blackburn Vikings Basketball Association
The Blackburn Vikings basketball Association Inc (BVBA) was established in 1990.
The Association was initially formed to enable Nunawading Vikings domestic players to compete at an elite level in the State junior competitions run by the VBA. A separate legal entity was formed with its own constitution and committee.
In those early days Norm Young – President, Mark Evans – Secretary and Ray Cowin Treasurer guided the fledgling club continuing the Vikings edict as a community based organisation providing opportunities for the youth of the area to learn and play the game of basketball in a safe and structured environment. These principles remain core to the clubs philosophy today.
The club has continued to grow and prosper and can boast the provision of a quality program that has produced a high proportion of teams competing at Vic Championship and high Metro level as well as State Representatives.
In 2014 the club entered 25 boys and girls teams in all age levels including 4 Vic Championship teams.
The club prides itself on providing quality coaching and continuing education and development of its coaches as a cornerstone of its junior program.
The club provides programs and opportunities for young players to develop a career path with the ability to play at the highest junior level, participate in Tours to the USA which has become a regular feature of the program and the opportunity to progress through to the Senior ranks in the state wide Big V competition.
The club ensures the core of its senior teams is made up of Blackburn Vikings junior players. BVBA has an exciting future. With a sound financial base and initiatives being implemented both on the court and off the court the program is in excellent shape to grow and prosper in a competitive environment and to enjoy continued and sustainable success.
Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club
Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club had its beginnings as part of the St Andrews Presbyterian Church Boys Club. Their leader, Ian Lowe, was looking for new activities for the boys and approached Don Richards, an experienced basketball player and coach, and his father , Alan ( Doc) Richards, and they took on the task of forming a basketball team. Initially one team was entered in the Melbourne East Basketball Association (MEBA) under the name of Nunawading Presbyterian Basketball Club (NPBC).
Training was in the church hall and then on an outdoor court built by the club members and their parents. Transportation to games was by car pooling or by public transport, and the team list was posted in the window of Sagger's Hardware store in Springfield Rd .
With the amalgamation of the Methodist and Presbyterian churches in 1969 a new name was required and the name Vikings was adopted and the now famous logo, drawn by the eminent cartoonist WEG came into being.
By 1970 the club had grown to 13 teams and with the introduction of girls teams jumped to 23 teams in 1971. The early 70's saw the introduction of senior men and women into competition under the Viking banner.
The 1970's saw continued growth of the club and intense lobbying in endeavouring to persuade the Nunawading City Council (now Whitehorse) to build a stadium for the club at Slater Reserve.
This effort continued through the 80's with club members participating in tree planting working bees and the like. These efforts were finally rewarded and a single court opened at Slater Reserve in November 1986.
At this time Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club junior teams also entered the Victorian Junior Basketball Association Representative competition in their own right. Prior to this players had to join Spectres or other associations to play in this competition, which was played throughout the metropolitan area
In 1989, at the initiative of Helen Baker, the Mozzies Program to prepare 5 to 8 year olds for teams commenced and has thrived ever since.
By 1989 there were 51 junior domestic teams, junior representative teams and senior men's and women's teams, all growing in strength..
In 1990 the second court was built at Slater Reserve as Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club continued to expand.
Junior representative teams at the top level had to be entered by an Association, and for this Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club formed an affiliated association, Blackburn Vikings Basketball Association (BVBA) in 1991, to cater for the ever increasing pool of talented young boys and girls. Under the Articles of Association of the BVBA, all members of Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club are automatically members of BVBA. The Victorian Basketball Association would not permit the name Nunawading to be used as it was already in use by Nunawading Spectres.
1991 also saw the Vikings men win the Division 2 Premiership; the clubs highest achievement in competition at that time.
In 1994 the Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club Saturday domestic teams transferred from the MEBA to the EDJBA, as the latter association offered better competition and more home games. The Midweek girls continued to play in the MEBA.
Boosted by a thriving Mozzie Squad, Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club continued to expand and by 2000 there were 77 junior domestic teams. BVBA also grew in size and strength.
Forty years of progress were celebrated at Family Day in 2006 with the unveiling of the Life Members Board, mementos, and the publication of the book “The Vikings- Proudly Celebrating 40 Years”. For those interested the book can be purchased through Nunawading Vikings Basketball Club.
Family Day 2007 saw another significant step in the Vikings history with the launching of a vibrant new uniform.