Full steam ahead for Emerald sporting group
IT’S a sport that has quickly gained momentum across the state and has players of all ages eager to take the field.
Emerald GelSoft Inc held an open day on the weekend to introduce the game, which uses gel blasters and biodegradable pellets full of water, to children, teenagers and adults across the region.
The Emerald group, started by brothers Dean and Ashley Ross, has attracted more than 500 members and is still growing.
President Ashely Ross said it was a fun and social activity that had helped put many troubled teens on the right track.
“There’s one kid here who was in a bad crew in town, he was always in trouble with the police,” Mr Ross said.
“Since he’s started playing, he’s stayed out of trouble and things have improved for him.”
Mr Ross said there was another young boy who had autism, was very angry and didn’t always behave at school.
“His mum has turned this into his reward if he’s good during the week,” he said.
“He’s so much better behaved and this gives him an outlet to let his anger out.”
About 200 people, aged from six to 70, took to the field on Saturday, which was set up with containers and obstructions near Court Action.
“I heard there were blokes playing on properties here, there and everywhere, and I just wanted everyone to come to one spot,” Mr Ross said.
However, he never expected the group to grow as big as it has.
Mr Ross said it was a great way to bring the family together, with his brother, dad and wife all part of the sport, helping where they could.
Emerald GelSoft Inc is in the process of acquiring land near Fairbairn Dam, which is to be turned into a major military style field.
“I want to have this field (at Court Action) for the kids – it’s simple and easy – and then out there we’ll run it more army style,” Mr Ross said.
“You may have to walk one kilometre, trying to hunt, kill, attack and defend among the scrub and huts.”
The Emerald Group will eventually run two games a week between the two fields, with all ages and genders welcome.
Mrs Ross said they had also looked into hosting birthday parties and Christmas parties this year.
Guns are available to hire for anyone who hasn’t played before and wants to give it a go.
Enclosed shoes and safety glasses are compulsory to take the field, long sleeve shirts and pants are recommended but not necessary.
For more information or to talk to the team, visit the Emerald GelSoft Inc Facebook page.