The township of Kurri Kurri has always shown a massive amount of community spirit and the Bulldogs’ world record attempt on Saturday was no exception.
The idea to gather as many people wearing beanies in the one place was a success. A massive 429 people decked in head warmers gathered at Kurri Kurri Sportsground after the Bulldogs’ first-grade game.
The event was held in support of the Mark Hughes Foundation, which raises money for brain cancer research, ahead of Beanie for Brain Cancer Week.
A Kurri Kurri boy himself, Hughes has not forgotten his roots and the residents turned out in force to support one of their own.
Hughes was diagnosed with brain cancer in 2013, and went on to establish the foundation with his wife Kirralee.
Many fundraisers have been held in Kurri Kurri and throughout the Hunter over the years to support the not-for-profit organisation.
Bulldogs fans would remember Hughes from his days playing for Kurri Kurri before he went on to join the Newcastle Knights, including the Bulldogs last first-grade premiership in 1995.
The town has always loved its rugby league and all the players who have ever donned the Bulldogs colours.
Any time Kurri Kurri has made the grand final of the Real NRL competition, a sea of red, white and blue makes its way from the Hunter Valley to Newcastle to cheer their beloved side on.
The last time the first-grade side made the grand final in 2013 the club sold about 650 grand final T-shirts and 60 supporter jumpers in the week leading to the decider. The local bakery even made red, white and blue bread, which sold like hot cakes.
That same support was shown on Saturday afternoon at Kurri Kurri Sportsground. The first grade side may have lost but that didn’t dampen the spirits of the world-record attempt.
Kurri Kurri residents should hold their head high and be proud of what they have done for the Mark Hughes Foundation and brain cancer awareness.
The efforts of the club, the fans and all those other people who felt compelled to do their bit was inspiring and should be commended.
Fingers will certainly be crossed around the Coalfields that the spirit shown on Saturday was enough to put Kurri Kurri into the world record books.