We’ve been playing sport
around the world since 1979.
The Golden Oldies movement had its origins in New Zealand when a rugby administrator named Tom Johnson sought a way to keep people involved in their sport, at a time when life was starting to get busier and busier.
Johnson, a New Zealand Rugby Football Union councillor, had seen the interest in past representative players getting together and having fun in semi-social games around New Zealand. In 1977 he organised some games as 20-minute curtain-raisers before matches played by the touring British and Irish Lions rugby side around New Zealand.
The interest in those games made him realise that there was potential for such a concept, none more than in Auckland where the local administrators didn’t want to host a game. So he took it to a suburban ground where 5000 people turned up to watch a game between the New Zealand Barbarians and a team of former British international players.
It was all about having fun, while also latching onto the desire of people over the age of 35, with no upper end age restriction, tying in their sport with international travel. The notion of ‘Fun, Friendship and Fraternity’ was central to the whole concept and the first rugby Festival was staged in Auckland in 1979. And it has stayed that way ever since.
Golf joins the club in 2018.
Along the way the Golden Oldies concept drew the attention of other sporting codes - including hockey, netball and cricket! Golf made its debut at the Golden Oldies Sports Celebration in Christchurch 2018, with a fantastic event split over four Canterbury courses. Players included legendary South African cricketers, Barry Richards and Mike Proctor. This Fiji 2019 event will continue the proud tradition of Golden Oldies - where the emphasis is on participating, meeting likeminded people and making new friends over sport and a few cold drinks!
“It's not about the number of shots,
it's about the number of friends you make.”