Work began on the 2017 KRFC minis festival in January with Sunday 15th October marked on the calendar and the invitations sent to clubs, not only on our doorstep as Old Reds and Bristol Quins but as far afield as Wellington and Cinderford. Over the following months the entrance forms came flooding in as the festival is based on a first come first served basis everyone was keen to be a part of one of the biggest rugby festivals in the south west.
Once all the paperwork had been finalised and the number of teams confirmed the responsibility of organising the pools and matches was handed to the respective section head coaches and team managers who did an outstanding job of scheduling the games so that everyone got the most out of the day and kept within the strict RFU guidelines.
All of a sudden the day was upon us. With very little sleep we rose to an overcast drizzly morning, put on the amber and black and headed out into battle! Arriving at the club at 7:30am an army of volunteers in hi viz jackets were waiting in anticipation for the first cars to arrive, the BBQ’s were soon fired up and the coffee was on! At 8:15am the first car bounced its way up the side of the 2nd team pitch, professionally guided to its resting place by the car parking crew, the engine stopped, the doors opened and a little purple and black hooped sock appeared from the footwell……….it was on!!!
The patio soon became a hubbub of players and parents guided by the smell of bacon and the thought of a nice warm cup of tea. Team Managers were set in the club house to welcome all the clubs and complete the registration process with such professionalism that the main bar could well have been mistaken for the G-20 Summit! Meanwhile the members bar became more like a pop up patisserie, stocking a fantastic range of home made cakes that seemed to appear from nowhere!
As 10 o’clock approached the car parks were full and the patio became deserted as people made their way to their respective pitches to get themselves settled in for the day. Then the moment came….the whistles echoed around Crown Fields and balls where kicked and passed to start a fantastic day of rugby.
The hours that followed were filled with non-stop rugby. Crown fields bursting with colour and noise in what can only be described as a real festival atmosphere. All too soon the matches were finished and players exhausted. Their efforts were rewarded with high praise from their coaches and parents alike and with smiles on their faces and the KRFC Minis festival medal around their necks they made their way home for a hot bath.
This year we were joined by Taunton RFC, Bradford on Avon RFC , Bristol Harlequins RFC, Cleve RFC, Chippenham RFC, Clifton RFC, Chew Valley RFC, Old Redcliffians RFC, St Brendans OB RFC, Wellington RFC, Wells RFC and Oldfield OB RFC. Within these clubs 107 teams of boys and girls brought with them a fantastic standard of rugby and above all an intoxicating enthusiasm for FUN!
I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone involved in making the 2017 Minis Festival such a successful day. In particular the volunteers who gave up their time to set up kitchens, marshal cars, pour tea, flip burgers, hand out programmes and bake cakes! The minis festival could not happen without your support !!
However there is one apology to make……
Our sincere apologies go out to the couple who were very patient waiting in the traffic queue in order to park at the club, only to find out that it was in fact the minis festival and NOT the car boot sale!!!
Looking Forward to the 2018 Minis Festival already!
KRFC Minis Chairman
Bath v Worcester at the Rec was certainly not the main feature as the Under 8's had been given the responsibility of providing the half time entertainment. Anticipation was high and tickets in hand we made our way to our lofty position in the stands. Sat amongst the other under 8 teams the atmosphere was electric. 30 minutes in the team descended the the stands, boots clicking on the metal steps, tags and team kit on and ready for action. Team briefing and rules explained from the Bath team added to the excitement.
A huge roar from the crowd indicated Bath had scored minutes before we went on meant the 14,000 strong crowd were in good sprirts. KRFC under 8's were pitted against Team Bath and we made our way to the pitch as soon as the half time whistle blew. Teams lined up, subs ready the ref blew the whistle and the game commenced. A loud roar from the crowd indicated a try on one of the other pitches. The encouragement from the stands was unbelievable and the teams responded, trading tries and displaying rugby that every coach was proud of.
Whistle blew, 10 minutes up and off we went smiles all round. "That was flippin amazing" , "can we play there every week" and "wasn't the grass warm" were a few memorable comments. Clicking back up the stands, muddy with big grins the 8's did the club proud.
All in all a really fantastic experience enjoyed by both the team and parents.
As part of the continuing development of our car parking areas we applied once again to the Aviva Community Fund and, once again, we have been shortlisted for the next stage. We could receive up to £5,000 of funding from Aviva - but to do this WE NEED YOU TO VOTE FOR THE PROJECT.
To support your club and vote, click the Aviva banner above or the link below. Each registration can vote up to 10 times so please sign up, vote for our project, and pass the information on to your friends and family and anyone else you can think of - and ask them to vote as well. The more votes we get the better chance we have of obtaining funds to complete this project.
Project link to secure votes:
On Tuesday night Keynsham featured on Bristol Radio. You can listen to the whole segment by clicking on the link below. Thank you to Geoff for coming down and giving up his time to talk to Jim, Jason and Jack.
It is with regret that we announce that Keynsham RFC will not be hosting their annual Fireworks Display event this year. Over the last couple of years the event has not been commercially viable for the club, as it relies on the gate entry fees of spectators to cover the cost of the fireworks (over £8000). With increased competition hosting events in the surrounding areas, together with an ever increasing number of spectators watching from the Bristol Road and surrounding fields for free, we can no longer cover the cost of the fireworks. We would like to thank those in the local community who have supported us by attending the event over the many years that it has run.
I am sorry to confirm that David suffered a stroke on Sunday morning. He is recovering in the BRI. He lost all use of the right side of his body but has regained some feeling and movement during the course of yesterday afternoon so Mandy is hopeful that we will see continued recovery. At present he is not having visitors - however we will update members later in the week both on his condition and when he can have visitors.
Tune in to Radio Bristol to listen to 'The Scrum Feature'. Geoff Twentyman caught up with Jim Brooks, Jason Wheatley and Jack Weston to discuss everything going on with the club. The feature is on the radio tonight and will be played between 6pm and 7pm.