Unspoken Conversations are the topics that are often swept under the carpet, whispered amongst the closest of friends and bitched about by many. I want to create awareness about difficult things that people face in life; grief, mental health, money, illnesses, family troubles, relationship difficulties and putting yourself first. I want to tell the truth about things that really matter.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

What makes a great sporting club?

As my time at my beloved Adelaide Lutheran Football and Netball club comes to an end, it has left me thinking about why I am so attached to the club, and why it is going to be sad to leave.

After all, it's just sport isn't it? It's just a club? I can just go and join another one?

This is true, but I have a HUGE emotional ATTACHMENT to Adelaide Lutheran.

It has got me thinking.

A typical social event with copious amounts of alcohol including $3 punch with everyone dressed up and ready to party!

What is it that makes a club so amazing?

Is it the people? 

Is it the quality of the sport?

Is it feeling a sense of belonging? 

Is it the food and alcohol? 

Is it the on court fun or the off court fun or both?

The girls at African Safari night!

When I asked myself these questions I came up with a list of 10 things that makes my club amazing.

1. Adelaide Lutheran Sporting Club is more than just a place to take the field and court to battle out of your heart on a Saturday. It really is a home away from home for so many country kids who leave the safe haven of their small community towns where they grew up in search for a career and experiences in Adelaide. It's a place where you feel safe and welcomed and where you truly feel like you belong and you are truly appreciated.

Just a glimpse of some of the girls who play for the club!

2. The people are so friendly and welcoming. Believe it or not but with 150 netball girls there is barely any bitching. Your team mates and club members become like your family. I guess this is because most of us have left our family behind in the country, so we rely on the support of other players to score, time, umpire and to cheer us on and encourage us from the sidelines. You only have to wait for the football and netball finals to see how many girls and guys from the club come out to support each other with loud voices and an esky full of beverages. I have also met so many amazing people from all over South Australia and beyond, who I know I will keep in touch with in the future.

I met Sarah through the Doggies and I was in her wedding in December 2011.

3. The atmosphere. Nothing beats heading back to the warm club rooms that have been heated by a wood fire after training on a Thursday night to enjoy our volunteer chefs amazing feeds. Nothing beats walking, skipping or running up to the bar for a cold beverage after a long day at work or hard training. Nothing beats playing netball on a Saturday and then heading over to the club rooms to support the boys playing footy with a meat pie and sauce while devouring a cider. It's always a relaxed, friendly atmosphere at the club.

Being a crazy nutter who stole someone elses super cool costume at 80s night!

A whoop! 2011 Premiers!
4. The social events. Wow. Just wow. You are actually the odd one out if you don't come dressed up. We've had events ranging from cocktail balls to Eighties nights to book character nights to Mexican nights with mechanical balls to quiz nights, horse racing nights and well just a normal Saturday at the club can turn into a raging party. Everyone is up for a good time. Everyone loves to have a dance and to belt out the golden old school tunes and everyone likes to drink a lot.
There's always plenty of tequila and coronas at Mexican Night!

Tight and Bright night!
African Safari Night!

5. The quality of the netballers (and footballers for the boys). There is so much talent out there. It's great knowing that no matter what grade you will be placed in that the girls know how to play and have fun doing it.

Going straight to number 1!

6. There's no pressure to give anything but 100%. The club values a good attitude, sportsmanship and having fun over the pressure to win all of the time. Of course, winning is always a bonus but it's not the focus.

It's more about the friendships you make, giving 100%, getting back to the club and having a beverage and having FUN!

7. Did I mention the food? Haha it's truly amazing.

We have a slight obsession with Weissy's burgers (note these are miniture lollies, the actual burgers would make your mouth water!)

8. The volunteers. Our club rarely runs on rosters. Okay, so there's an umpires roster but the girls put up their hand to go on it. There's no bar roster. The bar manager sends out a call for helpers and people put their hand up to help. It's truly inspiring. Everyone who volunteers goes above and beyond what is expected of them. Some put in more hours behind the scenes then we can ever truly comprehend. Even on a Saturday night the football president and his helpers come out and run the bar so that everyone can enjoy themselves (which we are ALL grateful for!)

Those that do help are appreciated come Presentation Day, usually with a bottle of wine or a small gift :)

9. Everyone respects everyone. No joke. There's no bitching about the president's or anyone for that matter. Everyone supports and appreciates the hard work of those who go above and beyond.

Mexican Night as tacos!

10. It's fun, SO much fun. I have met some of my best friends through the club. In fact, I was in one of the girls wedding last year. I've been to Victor Harbour, the Barossa Valley the Gold Coast theme parks, and soon I'll be going to the horses races in Melbourne for our netball trips. Everyone ranges from the ages of 17-40. Everyone is out to have fun and socialise and get involved. The club makes me feel as though playing netball is such a small part of the overall fun of being involved.

Netball trip to Queensland. We went and saw Outback Spectacular! Amazing!
Just a sneak peak at some of the antics that we get up to!

I love Adelaide Lutheran Sporting Club and I thank it for teaching me that sport is so much more then taking the court, that you get in what you put out, that it's important to get behind your club by going to social events and going back to the club for tea and by putting up your hand and that a country kid can fit into the city through the sense of community that a club creates.

We even went to Movie World in Queensland on a netball trip!
Does your club sound like mine? Do you love your club? Why/why not? Do you get involved or do you bitch about those who are involved?

Mad Monday!

I'm going to miss Adelaide Lutheran but I'll be sure to visit when we come back to Adelaide.

Look after yourself and those around you,



Em Coote said...

You couldn't be more correct about this amazing club! After moving away you appreciate all that is Adelaide Luthern Football & Netball Club!!

Kirsty Arnold said...

Nawww we miss you Em. Always a doggie - right? haha