The Western Spirit on their way to a 1-1 draw with Merrimac (which ended in a 4-2 penalty shootout loss) in their opening Silver Boot clash on Sunday.
The Western Spirit on their way to a 1-1 draw with Merrimac (which ended in a 4-2 penalty shootout loss) in their opening Silver Boot clash on Sunday. Griffith Thomas

Spirit to rise from devastation

SPIRIT by name, Spirit by nature.

Before the floods hit Goodna, the Western Spirit Football Club had organised a fundraising dinner this Saturday night.

After the floods, with a damage bill in excess of $80,000 and what looks like no insurance, that fundraiser has taken on much greater significance.

Yet faced with the sight of devastated houses in three of the club’s neighbouring streets, the Spirit will donate half what it raises on Saturday to the Westside Community Care to help those in even greater need.

Damage to the Spirit clubhouse at Kippen Park is estimated at $78,000.

The damage to the playing surface was estimated by senior club chairman Kym Wickstein at $4000 and he didn’t even guess the cost of repairing the ground’s lights.

“Seventy-eight grand is bugger all when, to get to the club, you have to drive down three streets that have been totally flooded.

“Homes there haven’t got plasterboard on their walls, their ceilings have collapsed.

“Seventy-eight thousand dollars is nothing when these people have lost everything.”

It means a long, hard road for the club to get back to its former condition but that is not something it will shirk.

“We’ll try and raise the money from mums and dads and club members,” Wickstein said.

“The area we’re in isn’t an affluent area and we’re very mindful that families can’t afford increased fees.

“We’ll be more vigilant now how we spend and raise money.

“But the support around the community has been amazing.”

Saturday night’s fundraiser at Spring Lake Hotel, Springfield Lakes, won’t solve all their problems, but it will warm hearts and help people, and the club, start to rebuild.

Former Socceroo and SBS TV football pundit Craig Foster is coming to Ipswich at his own expense to be the guest speaker while former radio personality Jamie Dunn will MC. Goodna-raised Socceroos representative and current Newcastle Jets player Kasey Wehrman has donated signed Jets and Australian jerseys and there will be plenty more auction items and raffles available, as well as comedian Fred Lang and live music.

Tables of 10 are available.

Those interested can contact Wickstein on 3437 8844 or 0418 198 072 or John Maconachie on 0422 6788 69.

Alternatively, if you have something that can be raffled or auctioned, it would also be gratefully accepted.

With just two training runs under their belt, the Western Spirit were gallant in going down to Merrimac on penalties (4-2) in their opening Silver Boot fixture at Richlands’ Luxury Paints Stadium on Sunday after finishing 1-1 in regular time.

The Division One Spirit’s next match in the pre-season competition is against Premier Division team University of Queensland at the same venue this Sunday.



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