Football fever hits

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Lechelle Earl, owner/editor

Football fever hits

Footy fever swept the Limestone Coast last week, as the region helped to celebrate this week’s upcoming AFL Gather Round.

Mount Gambier City Council helped fans go footy mad with the ‘Before the Bounce’ community activities, which included displays of premiership cups and a skills session topped off with a guest appearance from former AFLW legend Erin Phillips.

Mount Gambier Mayor Lynette Martin said it was expected that more than 40,000 people will travel through Mount Gambier on their way to Adelaide for this weekend’s Gather Round, with the Before the Bounce program of footy based events designed to capitalise on the large stream of people coming though the city and entertain travelling them during their visit.

“We are a proud sporting city with a particular love for Australian Rules Football. We are a destination in our own right and we welcome visitors who are making the pilgrimage to Adelaide for the Gather Round to kick start their footy weekend, play and stay in our city,” she said.

One of the main features from the program was the creative space at the Riddoch Arts and Cultural Centre called ‘Straight to the Pool Room’.

The immersive experience focussed on fans of regional football and featured a football guernsey collection from Naracoorte resident Andy Munro who has an extensive guernsey collection of players from the area who have played in the AFL.

At the centre there was also a footy guernsey design competition, footy card selfies and other activities tailored to every age group.

The Riddoch also hosted a film screening of a 1980s football classic, ‘The Club’ presented by Mount Gambier’s Drag King Loveit Murray.

It was followed by a football clinic run by SANFL game development staff and several local footballers at Frew Park.

There were special appearances from the SANFL and AFL premiership cups as well as an appearance from AFLW star Phillips.

Hundreds of young footy fans turned up for the event.

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