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Melbourne Football Club

Melbourne celebrates city’s diversity

IN THE lead-up to its round 15 game, Melbourne worked to build a crowd that represented the cultural diversity of the city of Melbourne.

To achieve this, the club drove a range of initiatives to help welcome newcomers to the MCG for the game against Adelaide.

Melbourne offered free general admission tickets to anyone holding an international passport.

Tickets to the game were also offered through a range of organisations and programs, including the Engaging Melbourne program, Melbourne Consular Corp, the MCC/MCG, China Southern and Study Melbourne.

The club also set up ticket offers at key tourist areas in the Melbourne CBD in the week leading up to the game.

Melbourne also created a video in English and Chinese about how to get to the MCG and enjoy the game.

Activations on the day included ‘Pass the Sherrin’, where 55 signed Sherrins had a message written on them from one of our players (and signed) and was passed on to a multicultural member of the community that was new to the game.

There were also a range of performances celebrating Melbourne’s diversity on the day.

A Sri Lankan band played on the stage pre-match, while there was a performance by Sri Lankan pre-on the concourse before the match and on the ground at half time.

Chinese Lion dancers performed pre-match on the concourse and on the ground as part of the Guard of Honour and again at half time.

Melbourne also used a Chinese Gong instead of the normal bells for Hells Bells as the team ran out, while members of the Neville Jetta Squad were included in the Guard of Honour.

Additional and multicultural food outlets were opened up both inside and outside the ground, while multicultural food offerings were available throughout all functions at the game.

Inside the ground, there were welcome messages displayed on the LED signage and scoreboard in a large number of different languages.

Culturally diverse art and music was integrated into the day, while there were designated bays within the lower seating bowl for attendees to get involved in the fun and colour of the day.

At half time, there was a flag parade featuring the flags of the 73 countries that are part of the Consular Corps in Melbourne, plus the Australian, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags.

These flags were paraded by Girl Guides and accompanied around the stadium by individuals from the respective countries/regions who registered for the opportunity to represent their country.

The result was a fun, inclusive environment for both long-term and new Melbourne supporters, with the attendance for the day recorded as 29,133.