GEELONG footballer Tom Hawkins remembers Sydney premiership player Nic Fosdike and fellow Swan Matthew Nicks coming to visit his school in Finley when he was a 10-year-old.
As the only footballers to visit his school, it had an impact that was probably similar to the one many Cats players left around the region yesterday.
Twenty-nine schools across the south-west hosted members of the Geelong Football Club, giving kids of all ages a rare opportunity to ask questions and kick the footy with some of the stars of the game.
Hawkins was joined by fellow premiership players Taylor Hunt, Tom Lonergan, Andrew Mackie, James Podsiadly, Joel Selwood, Matthew Stokes, Harry Taylor, Travis Varcoe, Trent West and a host of junior players as they visited schools from Apollo Bay to Hawkesdale.
Hawkins joked that he and some of his fellow players had been preparing a spelling bee on the way down from Geelong as a way of finding something to do with the kids if they were unable to have a kick of the footy outside.
He needn't have worried, as the pupils of Allansford Primary School had plenty of questions prepared to ask Hawkins and rookie Jackson Sheringham.
Over at Warrnambool Primary School, captain Joel Selwood and rookie Jordan Schroder kept the kids active by running a series of drills.
"We've got a good relationship with Warrnambool," Selwood said.
"We've been down here a few times each year. It's one of our bigger membership areas so it's good to come down and give a little bit back.
"I'm sure this is something nice that the kids will remember."
Three players Stokes, Steven Motlop and Joel Hamling also visited the Gunditjmara Aboriginal Co-op.