Queen, patron shine

Smithton Football Club’s Megan Popowski and Letitia House were among those honoured at the North West Football League Darrel Baldock Medal Count in Burnie on Sunday. Picture: Ashleigh Force.

NWFL. Circular Head Giants were recognised at the North West Football League Darrel Baldock Medal Count on Sunday.

Smithton Football Club ambassador Letitia House was crowned in the NWFL Queen’s Quest while volunteer Megan Popowski was honoured with a Patron’s Service to Football Award.

Reigning medalist Matt Elliott was awarded runner-up behind Wynyard Football Club’s Dylan Smith while Circular Head Giant Scott Bryan placed equal third. Justin Kay was nominated by his club for the Best First Year Player and Jaiden Crole received the league’s Most Improved Player award.

Becoming involved through her parents Harvey and Rosemary, and brother, senior club player Kalon House, Letitia says she is proud to have had the chance to represent the club.

“I loved every minute of it,” she says.

“I really love organising events so this was right up my alley.”

The role involved everything from organising fundraisers and events, to preparing and serving Friday night counter meals or casserole nights, and many odd jobs in between.

“The club is just like a big family,” she says, something that makes her proud to share the experience with her two sons, Blayde and Brax.

“I feel like I’ve gained so much from doing this, confidence wise and the friendships I’ve gained.”

Letitia’s ambassador duties will carry into the next season where she will attend the NWFL Grand Final and 2018 Darrel Baldock Medal Count to present medallions to the premiers.

Although she will hand the reigns to the club’s next representative in the new year, she says she will remain involved with the club.

A former ambassador herself, Megan says Letitia deserves every part of her success.

“Letitia did an amazing job, especially with two young boys, she organised everything.

“Staying back late at night, early mornings every Saturday.”

Representing the club as ambassador in 1993, Megan became involved with the Smithton Football Club during the ’80s through her father, life member Peter Dunlop.

Staying on with the club once her ambassador duties ceased, Megan has volunteered close to four decades with the club. Dedicating more than a decade to the committee, she was secretary from 2002 to 2007, and was honoured with a Life Membership in 2006. Her husband and former player, Kelvin, was awarded a Life Membership in the following years.

Their children, Denieka (Korpershoek), Mikayla and Jesse, followed in the family footsteps as Denieka represented as ambassador in 2011 and Jesse currently plays with the Reserves.

Volunteering her time in the canteen, bar, catering, washing guernseys and organising game day preparations, Megan says there is a lot of hard work that goes into the club but she wouldn’t have it any other way.

“If I’m honest, I’d rather be the one picking someone for this award,” she laughs, “but I do appreciate it.”

Megan mirrored Letitia’s words, saying the club was like a “second family”.

“I’ve been here from the word go,” she says.

“My family has always been involved and I am really passionate about the club and seeing it succeed.

“I love meeting new people and especially welcoming new people to the club, making them feel welcomed and a part of the family.

“It’s a great little community to be in.”

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