Western Bulldogs and their partnership with Ballarat a success

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Optimistic Dog

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Oct 11, 2014
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We didn’t play at Mars when there was 0 crowds and still in Melbourne so I don’t think so. In theory it could lower cost.
More from a safety aspect. The amount of standing room in the open with masks would be safer. Obviously would only be against interstate teams.
 
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lachy

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Jul 5, 2004
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As previously stated not a fan of the Ballarat experiment but if it means we can make substantial profits in 2021 have no issue if this is our permanent 2021 home.base and 2 or 3 home.gamea from 2022 onwards.

Is this a reversal, no. Covid and its lockdown has created both issue and opportunities, maybe this is our opportunity for a year or two

On SM-G975F using BigFooty.com mobile app
 

Roogal

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Dec 7, 2016
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Two Ballarat games provisionaly confirmed for 2021:
  • RD 4 - Sat 10th April at 1.40 pm WBFC v Brisbane Lions
  • RD 19 - Sat 24th July at 1.40 pm WBFC v Adelaide Crows.
The April game is the earliest they've played in Ballarat so far while the July game despite being played in the dead of Ballarat's Winter will at least be played in an earlier time slot and on a Saturday with improved amenities compared with July 2018 when they played a twillight Sunday game with all of the brutal local weather elements coming perfectly into force :fearscream:

I did go to the North Ballarat Sports Club last Saturday and noticed that works have well and truly begun at the Southern end of the ground to improve the support infrastucture. Works have commenced on the new entrance at Gate 2 and works are well underway to build a large toilet facility about 50ft (17m) rearward of the video scoreboard. This is to allow enough distance between the boundary fence and the new toilets to accommodate a future stand. They haven't started Gate 1 yet or work on the new kiosks under the Eureka Stand. The player change rooms upgrades for AFLW will be finished mid-January. I don't believe that permanent kiosks for the Southen end will get built untl a new stand is eventually constructed there around 2024, so it will be food vans until then in the standing areas.

They have cut away 6-8 metres into the front of the main hill where several rows of concrete terrace is being constructed as we speak. So far about $2.6 milion in works have been contracted and are underway from a budget $6.6 million. I'm not sure how the remaining $4 mil is being spent although some of it is set aside for increasing disabled access. We'll see.

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dogwatch

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Jun 17, 2009
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Thanks Roogal - we appreciate the updates on local development work.

It may be time for you to cross over from the dark side. You can still support North (North Ballarat) and you can still be called Roogal (ROOsters) but you'll be able to support and watch an AFL team that plays locally.

And dare I say ... one that is likely to win a bit more often than that other mob. 😜
 

Roogal

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Thanks Roogal - we appreciate the updates on local development work.

It may be time for you to cross over from the dark side. You can still support North (North Ballarat) and you can still be called Roogal (ROOsters) but you'll be able to support and watch an AFL team that plays locally.

And dare I say ... one that is likely to win a bit more often than that other mob. 😜
14409515_1491789320847780_4742368142964433184_o.jpg
 

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D Mitchell

Premiership Player
Jul 28, 2006
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In the words of Franko Cotzo and Con the Fruiterer ... " Beaudiful ... Sheeza gooda mate, you betcha :thumbsupv1: "
Early 1990s, Early Saturday morning. Mitchell & mate jogging north up Sydney Road. Diminutive old bloke with white hair steps out of a shop, says something I didn't catch. Ask running mate, Robert (Italian parentage). 'What did he say, Bob ?...

How good is life in Brunswick ?
 

Roogal

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Wishing you all a very happy Christmas and a safe and prosperous new year. Thanks for your ongoing support and accommodating my thoughts on your club forum throughout 2020. God Bless and enjoy the day. Have a toast with your families and friends today and drink to better times ahead. God Bless ... RG.
 
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CaptainMurphy

Norm Smith Medallist
Jun 4, 2015
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Wishing you all a very happy Christmas and a safe and properous new year. Thanks for your ongoing support and accommodating my thoughts on your club forum throughout 2020. God Bless and enjoy the day. Have a toast with your families and friends today and drink to better times ahead. God Bless ... RG.
We should be thanking you. Appreciate all the updates and info, thanks and merry Christmas!
 

Roogal

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1. We played a game in Tassie many years ago (Crofty ended up rucking and Saints smashed us) in driving torrential rain. We also played for several years in Darwin, where our players had extended time to re-adjust after those games. We also played (Saints again) in a preseason game at the Cattery several years ago where the game was delayed (and nearly cancelled) due to flooding. Weather is weather.

2. Mars does not exist to host 2 AFL games a year, it is used throughout the year for many events, as an outdoor entertainment venue for the wider Ballarat/western Vic area.
I've gone back and re-read your post and yes you nailed it. Weather is weather and I watched the entire process of Mars Stadium's surface being rebuilt in 2016. The ground is rated the best deck in Australia for a reason. I saw three feet of soil dug out to create the new oval base and that soil displaced to create the main hill. In the newly created oval pit went layers of drain systems, rocks, gravel, sand, fine soil and turf that created a ground that can sustain a 100 mm cloud burst and disipate all of that water in less than 20 minutes. That's even better than the MCG. So when the Dogs step out at Ballarat, they really are stepping out onto ideal AFL playing conditions irrespective of whether it's pouring or dry. You will be seeing your team play as good as they are and no significant ground condition can be blamed. After all both teams get equal opportunity to exploit other factors such as prevailing winds, light, temperature and humidity.
 
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The Buck

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Sep 23, 2013
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I've gone back and re-read your post and yes you nailed it. Weather is weather and I watched the entire process of Mars Stadium's surface being rebuilt in 2016. The ground is rated the best deck in Australia for a reason. I saw three feet of soil dug out to create the new oval base and that soil displaced to create the main hill. In the newly created oval pit went layers of drain systems, rocks, gravel, sand, fine soil and turf that created a ground that can sustain a 100 mm cloud burst and disipate all of that water in less than 20 minutes. That's even better than the MCG. So when the Dogs step out at Ballarat, they really are stepping out onto ideal AFL playing conditions irrespective of whether it's pouring or dry. You will be seeing your team play as good as they are and no significant ground condition can be blamed. After all both teams get equal opportunity to exploit other factors such as prevailing winds, light, temperature and humidity.
Thanks for that.
I've been to Mars Stadium twice now, and I was very impressed with the quality of the playing surface.
Ground surfacing has come a long way eh?
Unlike this:

1611830838461.png
Footscray V Fitzroy, 25th of May 1953
 

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footscray1973

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I've gone back and re-read your post and yes you nailed it. Weather is weather and I watched the entire process of Mars Stadium's surface being rebuilt in 2016. The ground is rated the best deck in Australia for a reason. I saw three feet of soil dug out to create the new oval base and that soil displaced to create the main hill. In the newly created oval pit went layers of drain systems, rocks, gravel, sand, fine soil and turf that created a ground that can sustain a 100 mm cloud burst and disipate all of that water in less than 20 minutes. That's even better than the MCG. So when the Dogs step out at Ballarat, they really are stepping out onto ideal AFL playing conditions irrespective of whether it's pouring or dry. You will be seeing your team play as good as they are and no significant ground condition can be blamed. After all both teams get equal opportunity to exploit other factors such as prevailing winds, light, temperature and humidity.
Thanks for quoting my post from May last year! (I had to go back and read posts around it to remember the context I was posting in. :))

You've reinforced my point re the playing surface - our players actually come out of Ballarat games in significantly better condition than they ever did in Darwin (or Cairns). But I take the points of at least one poster who indicated the weather also impacts crowd size, which is not ideal. I also posted ( a few pages back), official crowd sizes for all our games in Ballarat so far. They are slightly on the disappointing side in my opinion, but some of that is due to the scheduling. In that post I also suggested it would be good to get a crowd breakdown - i.e. how many are Bulldog members (even break that down by local members like myself vs Melb/non-Ballarat-based members), how many are locals just getting an AFL fix, and how many are opposition fans/members who have travelled. I'm still under the assumption those stats do not exist (maybe you know more Roogal ?).

My other point in the post that you quoted was to refute a baseless claim made several times elsewhere in this thread - Mars is not purely a 2-AFL-game-per-year venue, it hosts other events/sports throughout the year (which I believe you've also mentioned in many of your posts). I believe the same baseless claim alluded to no posters/jumpers/etc of Bulldogs advertising and other paraphernalia being evident in Ballarat. If I drove around with my eyes shut, I'd miss the Bulldogs Shop and other RWB insignia and car stickers, caps, t-shirts, etc, too, I suppose.

Anyway, thanks again for your updates Roogal, as both a fringe-dwelling local and WB member they're much appreciated, even if I don't actively post much on here anymore.
 

footscray1973

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Thanks for that.
I've been to Mars Stadium twice now, and I was very impressed with the quality of the playing surface.
Ground surfacing has come a long way eh?
Unlike this:

View attachment 1047419 Footscray V Fitzroy, 25th of May 1953
I reckon there's a poster who might have been at that game in a past life. He could tell you part of the reason for the flooding was accidental/deliberate incompetence by one of the groundkeepers - a certain E.J. Whitten. But you'd struggle to get the poster to talk footy these days. :(
 

Mattdougie

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Jun 29, 2013
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The lies in this thread are hilarious

No one EVER said Mars was used for only 2 AFL games. The point was ITS NEVER CLOSE TO FULL so continuing to pump money into it to grow capacity when they can’t fill the place for any event is a waste of money.

I’d love someone to post all this advertising that is so obvious in Ballarat??? Apart from the Shop that you could miss if you weren’t looking for it I’ve not seen a single thing throughout the city. Apart from Mars itself someone show us this advertising some speak of?

Keep trotting out those lies people, the sooner this absolute spud deal is over the better AND NOW WE HAVE TO PAY EXTRA FOR THE PRIVILEGE OF THIS SCAM 😂😂😂
 

D Mitchell

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Jul 28, 2006
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The lies in this thread are hilarious

No one EVER said Mars was used for only 2 AFL games. The point was ITS NEVER CLOSE TO FULL so continuing to pump money into it to grow capacity when they can’t fill the place for any event is a waste of money.

I’d love someone to post all this advertising that is so obvious in Ballarat??? Apart from the Shop that you could miss if you weren’t looking for it I’ve not seen a single thing throughout the city. Apart from Mars itself someone show us this advertising some speak of?

Keep trotting out those lies people, the sooner this absolute spud deal is over the better AND NOW WE HAVE TO PAY EXTRA FOR THE PRIVILEGE OF THIS SCAM 😂😂😂
You may or may not be right, MD. You appear to have a very sensitive BS radar. Love your work.
 

Roogal

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Dec 7, 2016
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Thanks for quoting my post from May last year! (I had to go back and read posts around it to remember the context I was posting in. :))

You've reinforced my point re the playing surface - our players actually come out of Ballarat games in significantly better condition than they ever did in Darwin (or Cairns). But I take the points of at least one poster who indicated the weather also impacts crowd size, which is not ideal. I also posted ( a few pages back), official crowd sizes for all our games in Ballarat so far. They are slightly on the disappointing side in my opinion, but some of that is due to the scheduling. In that post I also suggested it would be good to get a crowd breakdown - i.e. how many are Bulldog members (even break that down by local members like myself vs Melb/non-Ballarat-based members), how many are locals just getting an AFL fix, and how many are opposition fans/members who have travelled. I'm still under the assumption those stats do not exist (maybe you know more Roogal ?).

My other point in the post that you quoted was to refute a baseless claim made several times elsewhere in this thread - Mars is not purely a 2-AFL-game-per-year venue, it hosts other events/sports throughout the year (which I believe you've also mentioned in many of your posts). I believe the same baseless claim alluded to no posters/jumpers/etc of Bulldogs advertising and other paraphernalia being evident in Ballarat. If I drove around with my eyes shut, I'd miss the Bulldogs Shop and other RWB insignia and car stickers, caps, t-shirts, etc, too, I suppose.

Anyway, thanks again for your updates Roogal, as both a fringe-dwelling local and WB member they're much appreciated, even if I don't actively post much on here anymore.
I agree that the crowd sizes might seem small but for four out of the five games held there so far, the ground has been at 80-97% capacity with exception of that seriously badly scheduled twillight game played in the dead of Winter on a Sunday in 2018 and 6,400 odd brave souls out of the 8000 bookings actually attended. The AFL and the club learned their lesson there. I maintain that it is the ground's artificially small capacity of 11,000 which means that all who attend must book to go as an artificial crowd control measure. There's presently no walk up general entry because of the 11,000 capacity limit. The capacity has been constrained at 11,000 because of the lack of permanent amenities and permanent ticketing entry facilities. There is sufficient room in the standing area to easily accommodate a further 2000 but the entire area has until now been serviced by portaloos and temporary food trucks. With construction presently underway of the two new permanent entry gates, partial concreting of about 50% of the hill, and new toilets they may revise the crowd limits for the standing areas later this year. Also later in the year new permanent food and beverage outlets will be added to the built areas of the ground.

Will these changes be enough to keep the Bulldogs interested and re-commiting beyond 2022? Personally I'd like to see the club make their stay in Ballarat beyond 2022 conditional on upgrades to the lighting and construction of a second stand. On the subject of WBFC advertising, one would have to be Stevie Wonder to miss all of the Western Bulldogs banners during the footy season that adorn flag poles on the Melbourne approaches, along the Midland Highway (from the North) and along Victoria and Sturt Streets as visitors enter and drive around the city. But ... oh well, some people walk around with their heads up their a*rse in life marvelling at the view :grinv1:
 

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