Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Crows Family Day

A large video screen and the Adelaide Oval scoreboard are the backdrop for families and fans to gather on the turf . Families are sitting in groups on the lawn or standing near the stage in front of the scoreboard awaiting the arrival of the players.
Families and fans enjoying the sun.
On Sunday, the Adelaide Crows team returned home from Melbourne.  

Adelaide Oval was open for the 'Crows Family Day' which is a chance for the supporters to welcome the boys home and thank them for their hard work all season.

It was a perfect day weather-wise; a beautiful day to be out and about with blue sky, warm sun and a gentle, cooling breeze.

Families are picnicking and people are mingling on the oval.
Families picnicking & kicking the footy with the western grandstands in the background (Chappell Stand, Sir Donald Bradman Pavilion
& Sir Edwin Smith Stand).

We were surprised that there weren't as many people as we expected but we did arrive early.  Supporters were mingling and children were playing "kick-to-kick" on the oval.  The "Kids' Zone" playground was set up, the mascot Claude Crow was taking photos with the children and it was a peaceful family atmosphere if somewhat subdued by the disappointing game result.   

A view from the western side of the oval, with the bench shelter in the foreground, the eastern stands in the background with people scattered around the oval in between. The tall light towers look down on either side of the eastern grandstand.
Adelaide Oval's eastern stands named after influential football legends:
Gavin Wanganeen, Jack Oatey, Max Basheer, Fos Williams & Mark Ricciuto
My view of the First Qualifying Final was from under this stand.
In the centre foreground, just beyond the bench shelter,
team mascot, Claude Crow, is mingling with families.

It was relaxing to lay on the Adelaide Oval turf on a picnic rug under a blue sky with my crochet in hand until the boys arrived. It is not often that one gets the privilege to be on the ground at Adelaide Oval so that was a novel experience.

The Adelaide Oval is renowned for the quality of its turf.  I suspect the greenkeeper was very uncomfortable with everybody walking on it because one of the oval attendants advised that wheelchairs needed to stay on the edge of the oval for fear of the wheels leaving tracks.   

I was aghast at such discrimination at what was touted to be an inclusive family day.  When I told the oval attendant that many of the people walking on the oval were heavier than me and my wheelchair put together, he decided that if I happened to make my way into the middle and he didn't see it ... no problem!

(Every outing seems to have some sort of access issue! It is so irritating and offensive.) 

You know, if the gatekeepers had weighed every able-bodied person on arrival and stopped the heavier people from stepping onto the turf, there would be uproar yet wheelchair users are expected to accept this sort of discrimination without offence.

Anyway, we did get to see the oval from different vantage points.  

View of the southern stand with families and supporters mingling on the oval.
A view of the southern Riverbank Stand.
If you look carefully, you can see railings along the roof line.
Adelaide Oval hosts 'roof climbing' expeditions.
How awesome to see the footy or cricket from up there!
There is a gantry above the video screen that connects
the southern roof to the western roofs.
During footy matches, I am usually watching from within the Riverbank Stand so it is fun to see it from the other side.

I expected to see more people at the oval. Out of the tens of thousands of registered members, only 3,000 people turned up to acknowledge the players and their hard work.

One of the security guards expressed his disapproval. He makes a distinction between "supporters" and "barrackers". Those people who are happy to cheer when the team is winning but disappear when it is losing, he calls "barrackers". He calls those of us who go to the games and stick around through the bad times as the "true supporters" and there were a lot of those at the oval. 

A lot of other "true supporters" were still in Melbourne or travelling back from Melbourne after attending the Grand Final. Only a handful of them had made it to the oval for the Family Day because there was an airline 'glitch' in Melbourne and travellers were stranded at the airport. 

Apparently a computer system crashed and thousands of footy fans and holiday makers were stuck in the queue until the problem was fixed.  We soon learned that our Adelaide Crows team were stuck alongside them and wouldn't make it back to Adelaide until much later in the afternoon.  As if losing the Grand Final wasn't bad enough, it seemed like nothing was going to go their way this weekend.

Fortunately, the flight path into Adelaide goes right by the oval so when the delayed flight came over, everybody bunched together and waved at the plane!  We hoped it would make the boys feel better.

The boys invest their whole lives into their footy so they were devastated to miss out on the big prize after playing so well all season. They need some love at times like this.

We all have our ups and downs, good and bad days. All teams have losses eventually but it was so sad that this loss came at the Grand Final. I think it was the Chairman of the club who said, "It was a bad day to have a bad day."

That's alright - the players are human, not robots - we all have our bad days and regardless of the final score, I am still very proud of their amazing effort and achievement this year. To get to the Grand Final is an achievement in itself and worth celebrating.

Some of the boys appeared so forlorn when they arrived at the oval, the mother in me just wanted to go up and give them all a hug! Most of them are only young men in their 20s carrying a huge responsibility and they manage it so well. 

They still are "The Pride of South Australia" in my book.  

Thank you Adelaide Crows 

for a fantastic season of footy.

The historic scoreboard. The Torres Straight Islander and Australian  Aboriginal flags are flying at each corner. An antique gilded weather vane sits atop in the centre above a clock.  The scoreboard is black with yellow writing. It is permanently set up for recording the cricket scores: Innings, wickets, sundries, bowlers, wickets, runs, batsmen out, ball, runs, fall of wickets, overs etc,
The Adelaide Oval's historic scoreboard
with a thank you message from the club to the supporters.
This vintage scoreboard is still manually operated.

There's always next year and lots more footy to enjoy!

Related Posts on Lupey Loops

"A Crows Yarn", 30 September 2017: https://lupeyloops.blogspot.com.au/2017/09/a-crows-yarn.html

New Baby, New Blanket", 28 September 2017: https://lupeyloops.blogspot.com.au/2017/09/new-baby-new-blanket.html

"Footy Finals & Fatigue 2016", 9 September 2016: https://lupeyloops.blogspot.com.au/2016/09/footy-finals-2016-fatigue.html 


  1. Looks like it was a beautiful day to celebrate the team and enjoy the outdoors. I'm not much of a sports person so don't understand why people invest so much emotion into it, only wanting their team to be winners. Why can't everyone just enjoy the game and support whatever the outcome. That's what I stressed upon my boys when they were playing little league baseball. They used to get so amused and sometimes annoyed when their teammates would act so foolishly at a loss. Win or lose, you play the game and always display good sportsmanship.

    1. I'm with you, Tammy. It is about appreciating athletecism, respecting the game and each other and playing fair and square.
      When it comes to Grand Finals, there can only be one winner and one loser. People show their true grace and sportsmanship (or not) in how they respond to wins and losses.

      Some 'barrackers' are so harsh with their words yet I bet they have never achieved anywhere near to half the things that elite sportspeople do such as perseverance, discipline, commitment, and other elements of physical and mental fortitude required. I feel that unless we have been there, in their shoes, seeing the world from their eyes, and can do it better, we have no right to criticise.

  2. What a fab opportunity to show your support :)

    1. It was good of the players and team squad to come down to the oval straight from the airport. I know that when I travel, when coming home, all I want to do is go straight to bed for a sleep! I wouldn't want to be facing the world so soon after a public defeat so I have a lot of respect for the team and their humility.

      But hey! Remember they did win the minor premiership and made it to the Grand Final so that is still worth celebrating!

  3. Sounds like a good day (except the access nonsense which I am glad you sorted out). I am a fan of our local football team (real football, lol, not soccer), but I don't get to the games as much as I would like. Maybe once a year.

    1. It was relaxing, Mary-Anne. What are your team colours? It's a shame that you don't get to games as much as you would like.

      The thing I like most about going to the game is that I can see the whole field unlike television where one cannot see the structures or action off camera; e.g. a tv viewer may wonder why a player doesn't just kick the ball when the chance is there but we can't that there may be no good options because the detail is out of range of the camera. I like to see all the action all over and around the ground without the restriction of a narrow camera lens.

  4. Looks like a fun day and the weather is beautiful.

    1. It is always fun for me to get out and about for something non-chore and non-medically related and to do it with my family.

      The weather has been very changeable - typical spring. It is pleasantly warm one day and rainy with icy winds the next. Crazy!