Editorial: Finals fun at Raemaru Park

Monday 30 September 2019 | Written by Jonathan Milne | Published in Editorials


The mama at the sausages and drinks shop at Raemaru Park reckons this weekend was the first time Arorangi had ever hosted the rugby final.

She chatted with me that as my 4-year-old son merrily ordered a generous bag of hot chips to share with his big brothers. Okay, and with his dad …

What a great afternoon at the rugby it was! Not a lot of tries, to be sure, but plenty of sparkling runs that came close.

Most of all, a feeling of community that you won’t experience in many club rugby finals at stadiums around the world.

The kids and dogs running around the in-goal area. The pick-ups parked on the sideline with bins of food and drink on the back for family and friends.

My 4-year-old made friends with a great kid his age called Ben, and they practised their ollies on a skateboard.

My 9-year-old boy climbed a coconut palm overlooking the corner of the field – I think he had the best view of anyone in the ground.

And me? I watched as the exhausted teams plonked themselves down on the grass for the presentation of the trophy, and was reminded of how sports can bring a community together.