The Mitchell Bartram Memorial Football Game will be extra special this year, as it would have been Mitchell Bartram’s 21st birthday.
Mitchell Bartram sadly lost his life in November 2012 when he was just 16 years old.
Ever since, his family have held the annual memorial football match in his honour.
“It’s our way to keep his memory alive,” Mitchell’s sister, Holly Bartram said.
This year, what would have been Mitchell’s 21st birthday, the organising committee have had special guernseys made based on a design of a tattoo Mitch was planning to get.
The guernseys were designed by local tattoo artist, Tony Cotter from Upperkuts, who had designed Mitchell’s tattoo.
Ms Bartram said it’s appropriate they’ve had special guernseys designed this year, as Mitchell most likely would have gotten his tattoo for his 21st birthday.
This year is also set to be bigger than ever, with special guest Andrew Walker set to play.
Walker is a dual code international football player, having played rugby league for Manly, St George and the Roosters before switching to union.
He’s also the CEO of Break the Cycle, a not-for-profit organisation which aims to break the cycle of self-abuse, self-harm, low self-esteem and addictions with young people.
“He’ll have a play with the boys on the day,” Ms Bartram said.
The day will be a great family day out, with kids minis also playing prior to the main match, as well as a jumping castle and face painting.
The winning team will take home the Mitchell Bartram Memorial Shield, while there will also be a presentation for the Mitchell Bartram Man (or woman) of the Match, the Aaron O’Neill Best Scorer, and Tom Rhode Encouragement Award.
Both Aaron O’Neill and Tom Rhode were also tragically killed young.
“Aaron O’Neill and Tom Rhode were close family friends so we’ve involved them to keep their memories alive as well,” Ms Bartram said.
The presentation will be held at the Golden Grain Hotel at Pallamallawa where there will be a raffle and live entertainment by Jacqualyn Lillyman.
This year the annual football match will be between the Mitchell Bartram Memorial team (made up of Mitchell’s family, friends and anyone wishing to play for Mitchell) and a team of Moree boys.
The Mitchell Bartram Memorial Football game will be held at the Pallamallawa Oval from 3pm on Saturday, September 17.
Proceeds from the barbecue at the oval will be donated to the Pallamallawa Public School.