Suburban/Country Grounds

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Thread starter #1
Hey guys i thought i'd start up a thread of grassroots grounds.

It would be good to hear some stories from posters of their local grounds and other grounds they have played at in the past.
What are some of the best grounds you've played on?
What are some of the most picturesquare local grounds you have seen?
Which places have had the best and worst facilities that you have been to at local level.

Feel free to put up any photos too :)


I'll start off.

This year i went to watch a Maryborough & Castlemaine District final at Princess Park in Maryborough. This was the first time i have been then but it was a really nice day and the ground surface was in top nick and the venue was of good quality.
Here are some of the photos of the ground from google.
The grandstand




The ground has a lake just past the parking areas on the outer wing. A few balls in the games i watched actually bounced over the embankment and into the lake. He is a pic from google from the lake at night with the stand lit up


Off the top of my head the best ground in terms of a team using it would be Deakin Reserve as it has hosted AFL pre-season games before and is used by the Murray Bushrangers and regularly in the GVFL. Tbh i didn't think the surface was that crash hot but that was during the drought period too


Hopefully this thread kicks off :footy:
 

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bradrowe#32

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#2
Deakin Reserve has really improved over the past few years - it hosted a few NAB games, has new lighting and scoreboard and they sometimes use a big screen.

The Queen Elizabeth Oval in Bendigo is one of the premier venues in the state with a lot of history - they played BFL (Bendigo league) against VFL teams from about the 1920s.



 
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#3
The most picturesque ground I've played at was Collegians' (WAAFL) ground – Dalkeith Oval. This was last season. It looks over the Swan River on one side, and the other is squeezed between some nice houses, peppermint trees and an embankment. A real West Aussie feel about it. There was some old couches sitting around the boundary as well, but it never looked dingy.

I played awful that day, though.

When I was growing up, I was a North Albany kid. Collingwood Park always had a nice surface (some lol stories about the old alco groundskeeper), and the grandstand was good, if a little bland and concrete-y and 80s, for country WA.
 

stmookeyj

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#4
The venues that I have played at on a city-by-city basis, all of these in Queensland.....

BUNDABERG
- Faircloth Oval, West Bundaberg (Home of Brothers Bulldogs, AFL Bundaberg-Wide Bay)
Played a pre-season lightning carnival there a couple of years ago. Small clubhouse but sufficient for the small club functions. Good surface shared with soccer club. Not easy to find if new in town (actually thankful for ex-coach collecting me on the way to the ground!)

MARYBOROUGH
- Ocean Reef Park (Home of Maryborough Bears, AFL Bundaberg-Wide Bay, played against North Shore Jets AFL South Queensland Div 4 Northern)
Small arena, good lights which are often used for Bears home games. Postage stamp sized change sheds with minimal lighting but with a working shower. Mind the kangaroos that hop across the ground out of and into the bushland and trees surrounding the ground.

MACKAY
- Etwell Park (Home of Bakers Creek Tigers, AFL Mackay)
Massive change rooms by Queensland Country football standards (we slept there). Ground surrounded by trees on either wing with club rooms and spectator mound behind one goals and the road into Mackay above the other. Standard sized ground, surface good.

AIRLIE BEACH
- Whitsunday Sports Ground (Home of Whitsunday Sea Eagles, AFL Mackay, played in Mackay's Lightning Carnival 2009, Cyclone ended chances of going 2010)
Ground shared with Soccer team, part of sporting precinct which also incorporates Rugby Union and Netball. Large playing arena close to coastline so exposed to elements. Brilliant clubhouse built ABOVE changerooms (we were allocated the umpires rooms, visitors draw I suppose).

TANNUM SANDS
- Boyne Tannum Country Club Oval (Home of BITS Saints, AFL Capricornia Premiers)
Dressing rooms located across access road to main oval. Located in same precinct as World Game (Soccer) field, but often not allowed to use field for warm-ups if they are using that area for their games. Mound on one side of ground often filled with cars to provide full view of ground (and golf course on the other side for that matter). Tiny canteen/clubhouse area, used to have access to old golf clubhouse with bar/BBQ area etc but unsure why that isn't used anymore. Shared with cricket club so centre often either rock hard or total bog, arguably widest are in the league if not also the longest.

GLADSTONE
- Clinton Oval (Home of Gladstone Mudcrabs, AFL Capricornia)
Also home ground to Clinton FC (World Game) and Clinton CC (Cricket). Reasonable lights suitable for AFL but in reality geared more to host World Game fixtures as pockets can be darker. Good sized rooms and clubhouse, biggest shower area but only single cubicle for those that have to go. Cricket pitch again can either be rock or gluepot. Often get confused with field markings for both codes. Pockets at Road end seemingly narrower than at Airport end (clubhouse in right forward pocket at Road end, undercover and very close to action). Adjacent to Gladstone Airport that will take the land to expand their facility (flights to and from Gladstone have doubled now Virgin are in the market). Earmarked to move to Junior World Game facility closer to town....but grass there just got burned by bored kids!

YEPPOON
- Swan Park (Home of Yeppoon Swans, AFL Capricornia)
Arguably best off field facility in league. Comfortable rooms with decent showers/loos. Elevated area with nice views of ground in front of bar/clubhouse/canteen area. Have had ongoing issues with surface, often sand/boggy/muddy. Mangrove creek on outer wing heading towards Beach end doesn't help. Often have to put up with ferals from neighbouring Caravan Park who have way too much to drink (and get away with it, can't exactly jump the fence to tell them to stop drinking or to shut up). Small playing area affected by wind which blows towards soccer field end. Training lights only, often needing to be padded.

ROCKHAMPTON
- Victoria Park (No Longer used for AFL matches)
Had Character, narrowest venue in comp, much like Whitten Oval with less features. Pair of concrete cricket pitches (used for Social and School competitions) covered with dirt before season. Ground often hard, played better when it was wet we used to say! Tree used to have overhanging branches on clubhouse side of ground (outer side is the Basketball stadium, home of the former ABA champion Rockets). Trampoline Club behind the Northern goals, although too far away to have balls kicked inside/onto roof. Small shed divided by showers comprised change rooms, although the clubhouse used to be the home rooms, and a small rotunda covered by canvas was the visitors rooms with just one shower located where the umpires changed. Showgrounds across road, so carnies used to park and camp around ground every year for the show, and the horses/cows used the ground to leave their mark (so to speak). Low level training lights that I often had to turn off. Final game at ground was 2005 Preliminary Final.


- Stenlake Park (Home of Glenmore Bulls, AFL Capricornia. Also past venue for Queensland Country underage championships)
Change rooms haven't changed since 1970's, small and inadequate although showers are usually always hot. Have upgraded area for spectators in front of canteen/bar area which is good for functions, ideal standing areas in open for spectators to have a cold beverage or three. Benches can obstruct views from pair of mini stands which were recently covered (concrete blocks, no seats whatsoever). Decent sized ground but despite creek at Southern end of the ground behind the goals it never seems to be that windy. Used to be easy to avoid having to pay entrance fee, just enter where the playground gate was and pretend you were using the playground for the kids. Playground has since been removed and fence was moved closer to ground to leave playground in open prior to this.

- Rockhampton Cricket Ground (Home of Panthers AFC, AFL Capricornia)
Old grandstand provides cover for most opposition fans, home supporters have own clubhouse area with seating/bar arrangement. Good sized area to play, but nightmarish in wet with multiple cricket wickets (there are 6 pitches at the Cricket Grounds used in the summer, 1 is located in the middle for the 20 over competition to play at night, another located on the flank at the Gymmy Grounds end. Other wickets not on AFL surface). Rooms thankfully improved since 1990's/early 2000's, 300 times more spacious and no longer prone to being flooded after any rain (with location near river the rooms are still flood prone of course as seen in 2010). Racecourse behind goals at other end. Lights for main oval good but again pockets can be darker than normal. Very ordinary benches, just 6 bucket seats attached to support poles and roof reasonably low.

- Kele Park (Home of Brothers AFC, AFL Capricornia)
Continually being developed. Large playing area constantly being worked on (levelling, drainage, flood repair). Transplanted benches, uncovered stands and timekeepers box from Victoria Park, trying to maintain! Good sized undercover area much like Glenmore's in design but elevated much like Yeppoon's. Adequate sized rooms, home rooms certainly much bigger as female toilets restrict visitors space. Located a stone's throw from Rockhampton Airport (can have planes occasionally fly over). Not easy place to park cars particularly on wet day (bogged easily). Long term aim is to move lights at least closer to surface to have full field drills, council approval and financing the movement of light poles biggest obstacles (we do have the lights and the poles, and qualified people within the club to fix problems). Located adjacent to softball fields, we are jealous that they got Government funding for lights, state championship standard fields and a clubhouse!
 

West_Coast_Eagles

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#5
I have played on a vfa & vfl/afl ground. The vfl one being packed out the day for a semi & the vfa was my weekly home ground. Nothing better than looking up & seeing a grandstand with people sitting in it!
 

Bartel

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#6
The best ground I have ever played on by far was Etihad stadium. The surface was great that day and I kicked around 21 goals - a P.B for my Auskick years. ;)
 

blueboy25

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#7
The most picturesque ground I've played at was Collegians' (WAAFL) ground – Dalkeith Oval. This was last season. It looks over the Swan River on one side, and the other is squeezed between some nice houses, peppermint trees and an embankment. A real West Aussie feel about it. There was some old couches sitting around the boundary as well, but it never looked dingy.

I played awful that day, though.

When I was growing up, I was a North Albany kid. Collingwood Park always had a nice surface (some lol stories about the old alco groundskeeper), and the grandstand was good, if a little bland and concrete-y and 80s, for country WA.
Dalkieth oval is smallest ground and has the worst change rooms in the Amateurs but apart from that you get a nice view of the river.
 

Milang_Panthers

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#11
Bridgewater Oval, Bridgewater SA

Usually by about round 5 or 6 the oval is looking like this. There is a creek that runs along one side of the oval and when the creek floods it means games played with the ground half underwater. The changerooms are small and are located on the other side of the creek meaning you have to walk over a bridge to get from the changerooms to the ground (always thought that was pretty cool when i was young). The oval it self is very small and the arc in 35-40 metres instead of 50. Luckily this year they have merged with another club (Callington United Eagles) who have the driest ground in the league, so hopefully the oval wont get this bad ever again.
 

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bradrowe#32

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#12
Perc Allison Oval in Beaconsfield (VIC) gets like that as well. One game in 2010 against Cranbourne it was like a horse paddock.
 

finders

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#13
Bridgewater Oval, Bridgewater SA

Usually by about round 5 or 6 the oval is looking like this. There is a creek that runs along one side of the oval and when the creek floods it means games played with the ground half underwater. The changerooms are small and are located on the other side of the creek meaning you have to walk over a bridge to get from the changerooms to the ground (always thought that was pretty cool when i was young). The oval it self is very small and the arc in 35-40 metres instead of 50. Luckily this year they have merged with another club (Callington United Eagles) who have the driest ground in the league, so hopefully the oval wont get this bad ever again.
Reminds me of Shepley Oval Dandenong where the Dandenong Redlegs palyed in the VFA . It was truly a mudhole during a wet winter and Dandenong is in a rain belt just to make it worse.
 

Noobz0r

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#17
Dalkieth oval is smallest ground and has the worst change rooms in the Amateurs but apart from that you get a nice view of the river.
Do you get to shower with the other team after the game? Was one of the weirder experiences in ammos. (wesley curtin)
 

bradrowe#32

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#20
Love those old grand stands.

Bright and Violet Town have great grounds with old school grandstands and quaint atmosphere.
 
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Thread starter #25
Yea Football Ground. Hosted a pre-season match between Richmond and Geelong a few seasons ago as a fundraiser for those affected by Black Saturday.
They have been struggling as a club as of late and haven't won a game in the past two years in the Yarra Valley League in Division 2.





 
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