It’s kind of hard to explain to people who don’t live in Melbourne, but it’s a very special time of year in the Victorian capital right now.
The grass is getting greener, the magpies are swooping, the weather is getting slightly less shitty. But above all else there’s a spark in the air; a pang of excitement; the giddy thrill of greatness looming just around the corner.
You’d be mistaken to chalk it up to just the change of seasons. It’s something more. Something inherently Melbourne. Something bigger than everyone.
It’s the month of glory! Where ordinary people become heroes. Heroes become legends. And legends live forever. It’s FINALS FOOTY, and it’s the most wonderful time of the year.
And with the looming AFL Grand Final now a mere week-and-a-half away, preparations at the MCG and surrounding area are well and truly underway for the biggest annual sporting event on the Australian calendar.
Far from being just a single game event, the city is preparing to throw a week’s worth of celebrations around that one day in September (that’s actually in October this year), including a massive free festival for punters announced today.
The Foxtel Footy Festival will run from Wednesday September 28th until Grand Final Day on Saturday October 1st, and will feature, among other things, a free concert headlined by ‘Strayan rapper Illy.
The Melbourne-based artist was today unveiled as the headline act for the free concert, which is scheduled for 5pm on Friday September 30th in the Yarra Park surrounds of the MCG.
Illy, who has previously appeared at both Groovin’ The Moo and Splendour in the Grass this year, recently released the new single ‘Papercuts,’ which features a guest performance from Vera Blue.
The devout Melbourne Demons fan made his allegiances for the Grand Final abundantly clear, and they pretty much line up with every other neutral fan’s hopes:
“I’m a Melbourne boy and a Dee’s supporter, so I’d love to see the Bulldogs win the flag this year.”
The concert falls on a public holiday in Melbourne, giving more people the chance to swing by the park and attend after the Grand Final Parade.
The multi-day fan festival also features food, drink, a Kid’s Zone, free movie screenings, live TV and radio broadcasts, and appearances from AFL players and personalities.
You can cop all the vital details of the fest over at the AFL‘s website.
The Grand Final festivities wrap up with another free gig on the ground of the MCG after the game, featuring Vance Joy and The Living End.
GET AROUND SOME FINALS FOOTY, YOU GUYS.
C’ARN THE DOGGIES.