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Volunteers celebrated at AFL Country Game
CFA volunteers were welcomed for the second year in a row to participate in the AFL Country Game by marching on the MCG in a parade of honour.
The AFL Country Game was first introduced in 2016. The initiative was created to raise awareness and to celebrate regional Victorian’s who make a difference to our nation.
As the Country Game aligns with National Volunteer Week festivities, 200 CFA volunteers marched around the MCG prior to the Essendon and Geelong Country Game.
Families were invited to enjoy activities outside of the MCG including live music, Deni Ute Muster, farmers market, animal farm, camel rides, food trucks and more.
CFA contributed to the fun with an interactive display for kids as well as the adults.
Bayswater brigade brought along their Tanker, Mobile Engagement Unit and of course Little Pat.
Captain Koala and Firefighter April were also at the event entertaining the crowd.
At 6.40pm CFA volunteers took the field and wore their uniforms with pride as they walked the perimeter of the field in a parade of honour.
Children reached over the barriers to high five the firies and patrons stood out of their seats to clap for the members as they walked on by.
Operations Manager Alan Rankin along with father-daughter duo Terry and Ella Noone from Bunyip led the crew on to the grass of the MCG. Terry and Ella described the experience as beyond their wildest expectations.
“It was pretty amazing having people wave and cheer us on,” Ella said.
“People came down to shake our hands, it was great to see,” Terry said.
After the lap of honour a pre-match ceremony was held to pay respect to CFA, SES, Farmer’s Federation, Flying Doctors and Country footballers.
Essendon and Geelong footballers stood alongside members representing their organisations as singer songwriter multi-award winner Sara Storer sang Waltzing Matilda.
During the ceremony images of volunteer agencies assisting the community were displayed on the MCG scoreboard screens.
The members then came back to their seats to watch an exciting game of footy as the Bombers managed to overpower the Cats by 17 points.
The Country Game is a great opportunity to present some of the wonderful things regional Victoria has to offer as well as thanking volunteer services.