Ennis RFC celebrated the launch of the 2010/2011 season with a registration day event recently which attracted over 400 people in all.
Mini's coordinator Niall Mangan said: "Despite a strong build up, the club was overwhelmed by the response of existing and new members and their families on the day. We registered over 130 players, catered for over 400 people while running a full under 12 Blitz in the club's grounds at Drumbiggle. All registered players received free rugby gear and a booklet containing all the relevant information for the year ahead."
"The highlight of the event was the arrival of two Munster and Ireland internationals. Niall Ronan and Barry Murphy who wowed the children with their presence. Not only content to be present, after a bruising victory in Glasgow on Friday night, they insisted in speaking to the various age groups from 8's to 12's and letting them know where their distinguished careers began and how sport has benefited them.
Each group was given the opportunity to ask questions of their rugby heroes who later signed every jersey, ball, hat, boot and other paraphernalia before standing for photographs.
"As professional sports people they were brilliant to the children and proved to be a big hit. This is testimony to the recognition Ennis RFC is now getting for the hard work, and a strengthening relationship with Munster Rugby," Niall Mangan said.
The club also expressed gratitude to Gearoid Crowe, Lucas Kunz and Colm Considine for contributing their spare time to assist with drills for the kids and also standing in for photos. The trio, while playing with Ennis RFC, represented Munster under 18's while Lucas has also gone on to represent his country.
From the organisers perspective things could not have gone better. "We have created a real stir, and to see so much excitement, enthusiasm and sense of community makes it all worth while. Maybe one day a couple of these kids will be coming back as ambassadors being part of the Munster set up" said club PRO Pat Flynn.
"Without exception all agreed that the event was a massive success. Ennis RFC mini section is now becoming one of the most proactive in the province," Niall Mangan added.
Players and potential players that missed the event are still welcome to come along to training on Sunday mornings in Lees Road with under 8's, 9's and 10's (DoB 2001, 2002 & 2003) out at 10am and 11's and 12's (DoB 1999 & 2000) out at 11am. All welcome.
As Sunday's event was totally run on a voluntarily basis with all contributions coming from the families of young players, we are extremely grateful for all those who assisted in with the refreshments, car parking, taking gear orders, organising activities for the kids etc. From Ennis RFC, a big thank you to all.