RAIDERS legend Alan Tongue was the special guest at the 66th Peel Schools Rugby League Carnival, but it was far from the first time he has been at the event.
After going to primary school at Nemingha and high school at Farrer, Tongue has fond memories of the carnival.
“I went every year so probably played in the carnival 10 or 11 times at least,” Tongue said.
“It is great to play at NRL level but some of my best memories are of playing at this carnival and others like it.”
“A lot of my best mates are guys I played with and against when I was at school.”
While playing with Farrer the utility forward won a couple of Peel school titles.
His fondest memories are of the battles that Farrer had against the Lismore school Woodlawn.
“It was always a big clash between us and Woodlawn,” Tongue said.
“We always looked forward to the carnival.”
While Woodlawn don’t attend the carnival these days, plenty of other schools from around the state do.
Tongue is working with the NRL One Community Program that aims to use football to deliver powerful social change in the community.
“There is so much footy on at the moment,” Tongue said.
“If you like rugby league it is a great time of year.”
The tackling machine spent the day talking to everyone and anyone about all things footy, as well as presenting trophies and giving tips to the young players.
“Just to see kids at school and out in the sun playing footy is great,” Tongue said.
“That is what it is all about.”
Tongue turned out to be the lucky charm Farrer needed as they went on to win Most Successful School at the carnival.