At the start of April I took a trek up to Newcastle to take in the Newcastle Jets and Newcastle Knights fan experiences at McDonald Jones Stadium. Unfortunately I ended up having a somewhat frustrating trip there as a result of getting sick from an interaction with the local wildlife (mosquitos) which resulted in missing the Knights game and ending up in the ED back in Melbourne with a fever. I’ll hopefully be heading back up to check out the Knights game day in July.
All was not completely lost though as I was able to experience the Jets A-League match, talk to many Newcastle sports fans to learn about this area’s fan demographics as well as be impressed by a few things here such as:
– Fan social space sponsor ‘castle’ seating area.
– Vegetarian food options
– $5.80 beers- some of the cheapest for fans across Australia
– Jets members priority entry lanes
– The LED tinnie was a cool albeit unusual photo opportunity sight
– Chiko Roll bar! How iconicly Australian. This was doing a huge trade.
– Cracking hill sides with a fun family atmosphere
– The CEO singing a Shannon Noll number…what cant Lawrie do here?
– Brewers Bar with some craft beer options (non local or independent but still good)
– Fan engagement activities outside including photo ops, games and kids fun
– Ability to bring camp chairs in for the hill brings a family vibe
Overall a quality atmosphere and experience but gutted I couldn’t see the Knights game day. Thanks to some of the local sportsbiz crew who looked after me
with chemist and GP help on the Saturday here. I’ll be back here soon.