On Thursday 20th December 2018, Ayr United Football Academy hosted their annual Festive Friends Christmas Lunch in the Ally MacLeod Hospitality Suite with support from the SPFL Trust.
Over 90 guests from the ‘Football for Life’ projects gathered for a splendid traditional Christmas fare with turkey and all the trimmings. The lunch gave the opportunity for friends to gather from all the programmes in the ‘Football for Life’, which includes: Football Memories, Walking Football, Ayr United Strollers Walking Group and the Shed. Also in attendance, were volunteers from AUFA and some VIP guests, including Ayr United Legends, Jacky Ferguson and Davie Harkness and also Jim McCalliog and his wife, Debbie. Everyone that attended the lunch also received a Cadburys Selection box as a gift.
During the afternoon, the guests were treated to some wonderful Christmas-themed music and singing by pupils from the local Newton Primary School, who were a great credit to the parents and staff of the school. The school which sits in a deprived area, also received a truly astounding 100+ presents which were kindly donated by guests.
While having their meal, the guests had to rack their brains to answer the ‘The Tartan Army’ quiz, which was supplied by Football for Life member, Gordon Ferrie. To add to the football atmosphere of the afternoon, the Hampden Jukebox was playing in the background with classic songs like, ‘We’ll be Coming’, ‘Ally’s Tartan Army’ and ‘Flower of Scotland’.
The afternoon was rounded off with a Raffle, with prizes ranging from chocolates to Ayr United items, including a home shirt and football signed by the players. All money raised from the Raffle will be put straight into the ‘Football for Life’ programmes.
After the numerous thanks and farewells, it was obvious that this was an event that will continue to be held every years. The concept of Football for Life was shown to be a great way of bringing the community together with ages ranging from 5 to 90, all enjoying the chance to socialise, talk and sing to the common theme of football.