Carlton's community visit a success

IN a week where the spotlight has been on the negatives in sport, Carlton’s two-day AFL Community Camp in Bendigo has been deemed a resounding success.

The Blues visited more than 30 school and community groups over the two days and helped raise money for junior football in the region through two functions at the All Seasons Hotel.

“The Carlton players interacted with the Bendigo community in a positive way,’’ AFL Victoria Country Regional Development manager Tony McNamara said yesterday.

“They helped spread the message about getting active in football in the region.

“The feedback I’ve had from the groups they visited has all been positive.

“Carlton visited more than 30 groups from kindergartens through to senior citizens.

“The club did a fantastic job.”

Thursday night’s sportsman’s night and yesterday’s business and administrators lunch were well received by the public.

“The players mingled with the crowd for three hours on Thursday night,’’ McNamara said. “They signed autographs all night and posed for photos. The Carlton fans really enjoyed the night.

“To have (Carlton chief executive) Greg Swann make time to come to Bendigo today to be the guest speaker at the luncheon was fantastic. He passed on his knowledge and some ideas on how to run a country football club.

“Those two functions raised money for us that we can use for junior football development in the region.” McNamara said the way football fans responded to the Community Camp will benefit Bendigo’s chances of hosting other AFL clubs in the future.

“The number of people we had attend the Super Clinic on Thursday night sends a positive message that Bendigo is embracing AFL football,’’ he said.

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