Last night I attended the birthday party of my old weight training coach.
It was a surprise party and there was a great turnout - over 100 people came to celebrate the 70th birthday of a quiet guy who has never liked the "limelight" but has had a profound impact on weightlifting in South Australia, both as a competitor himself in the 1970's and 1980's and as a coach after his competition days were over.
The people that turned out last night could not have been a bigger cross section of the community, with ages ranging from children who were not yet teenagers right to adults in their mid to late 70's, business people, labourers, tradespeople, nurses, ambulance officers, retirees - the list goes on and on.
Many of these people had not seen each other in over 10 years and the only common thread for all of them was that they were all a part of this weight training community at some time.
Ironically, the party itself was at the clubrooms of a football team that was playing in a final that same night and while our party was taking place upstairs, there were hundreds of football fans downstairs cheering for their team - just another example of the community at work.
It was a wonderful example of how powerful communities can be formed from people from all walks of life - as long as they have a common goal.
Happy birthday Courtney - a wonderful night.