Jack Attack success at Christies Beach
The Christies Beach Bowling Club’s inaugural Jack Attack program has been labelled a resounding success.
The club sold out its program, which is run on Thursday nights, with a maximum of 14 teams taking part in their competition.
Christies Beach Bowling Club Jack Attack coordinator Anthony Exton said the program has been the most successful of the recent moves by the clubs to attract new people through its doors.
“It is the first year we have run Jack Attack at Christies Beach,” he said.
“We have tried in the past to do things on a Friday night and it hasn’t quite worked, and we haven’t had the numbers.
“We held a round of the BPL during the winter and that was really successful.
“I believe we were the only club to have filled it with all 16 spots.
“Then James (Wilson) came to us with the Jack Attack concept and gave us a rundown about it, then we took it to the management committee, and they accepted it, so we went from there.”
Anthony said attracting numbers has not been an issue for the new program.
“We unfortunately only have one green under lights, but we have got a full squad of 14 teams to utilise that green, with three or four in the wings and I have had several enquiries about going again, and we are likely to do that after the school holidays because this one was so successful,” he said.
Anthony believes a change in marketing tactics has contributed to the numbers boom.
“Previously we would put things on our Facebook and they would reach 100 people,” he said.
“This time, with all the marketing information you get with the Jack Attack program, I used a lot of those videos and that sort of stuff.
“I didn’t just put them up on our Facebook page, I put them up on various community forum pages and things like that, so the reach was going from 100 people to 3000 people.
“I play with my father and my daughter now as well and that is the sort of people we are aiming at.
“I want to target people such as guys who are around 40 and have probably finished playing contact sports, but are looking for something else to keep them busy.”
Anthony said Jack Attack has helped the club achieve its goal of bringing new people through its doors and exposing them to a new sport.
“Our club is only a small one with three teams on Saturday and two of those are only three-rink sides,” he said.
“Within our membership there would probably be five blokes under 50, including a couple of kids, and then everyone else is retirement age and above, so we need new members coming into our club.
“Our club is tucked away in a pretty quiet spot, so people don’t know it’s there, so this is a great way to bring new people into our club.
“We have kept costs down, so we only charge $1 for a sausage and we only charge $15 per team, which can include up to six players.
“So, we have probably taken a hit there, but it is about getting people through the door and getting people involved in our great game.”
Anthony said the program was already having the desired flow on effect for the club.
“We have already got a couple of guys who are interested in social bowling on Tuesdays,” he said.
“What we also did was we offered our rinks on a Friday night to Jack Attack players, so they could come down and just have a roll up, with bowls there to be borrowed.
“Unfortunately, the weather hasn’t been too kind to us the past two Fridays, so we haven’t seen anyone down there yet.
“I think some bowling clubs can hold onto their greens too much, but I think it is just about getting people in the door, as opposed to making sure they are a member immediately.
“Get them in the door and enjoying the game first.”
Anthony thanked Bowls Australia for their efforts in helping set up the program.
“James Wilson and Bowls Australia have been very supportive,” he said.
“They have been helpful and available, which really helps, because it means you have got someone to fall back on if you need.”
Participation and Programs Manager for Bowls Australia based in South Australia, James Wilson, said he was pleased to see Christies Beach reaping the rewards of a successful Jack Attack program.
“It is great to see the success that the Christies Beach Bowling Club is having with its first ever Jack Attack program,” he said.
“They are a perfect example of the benefits that a program like Jack Attack can have at a club.
“It helps get more people through the doors and enjoying our great game, which leads to plenty of positives for the clubs and the individuals.
“For any clubs interested in running their own Jack Attack program, we are here to help guide you through the process and help do everything we can to make it successful.”
For more information about Bowls Australia’s Jack Attack program and how you run it at your own club, visit https://www.bowls.com.au/jackattack/.