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A SPECTACULAR BEGINNING

 

 

how DID you got started with Spider-Man & cosplay as Illawarra’s Friendly Neighbourhood Spidey.

 

 There is no short story here. I have always envied the cosplay community, how talented everyone is, how most stick to certain characters and use their cosplay to reach others. I’ve always loved Spiderman, but I wanted to do something different, I wanted to help others with it too.

 

 I saw the amazing work I98fm’s

Illawarra Convoy does for the

Illawarra Community Foundation

over many years, which for those

that don’t know, every year the

Illawarra raises money in the

Millions over the year leading to

one big final Convoy of Trucks,

Bikes and Cars down the mountain.

 

  Funds raised go to help struggling families going through things like Cancer and Leukemia treatments and needing places to stay close to hospital among other things. I always wanted to be a big part of it but didn’t know how. Ask my wife, but When I get involved with things, even making friends, it’s all in or nothing. Go hard or don’t bother which can be to my own detriment sometimes.

 

  I can’t create cosplay from scratch, I don’t have the talent, the tools or time and money and I didn’t just want to buy a cheap suit. So, I asked my community Of Calderwood and the Illawarra to help me raise funds on GoFundMe.

 

  Promising I’d use the suit to become Illawarra’s Friendly Neighbourhood Spidey, to help Hospitals, schools, small business and whoever needs a visit from Spidey to make them smile.

 

  We raised about $950.00 thanks to the Illawarra and family and friends and some Businesses. I found a film quality suit from RPC Studios and paid the rest with my savings and the rest is history.

 

  It raised some questions such as

 

 “what is this idiot doing?”

 

  But I stuck to my guns, I knew why I had to be a bit of an idiot and make people smile otherwise it wouldn’t work.

 

  As I got noticed I started being asked for Visits, my local Tullimbar Public had me for a disco, Illawarra Light Railway Museum had me for an event.

 

  But the biggest thing for my start was having The RMK Group take me on for their Illawarra Convoy mascot for 2022 alongside their amazing Marvel Painted Cranes. They created a wonderful event which had Marty Haynes our local radio announcer star held up 15 stories high in a crane over Albion Park and I was there as Spidey alongside my wonderful business partner Angela who Cosplays Spidey Gwen.

 

  That day raised about 11k for Convoy, leading to their final Truck Bidding at 40k. I knew then, I was onto something, I was doing the right thing.

 

  I had done a few parties for close friends and family and was told I did an excellent job, to my surprise again, I was a hit.

 

  So I paid for my Childrens Check, grabbed my ABN and Created the Party Business name Illawarra’s Friendly Neighbourhood Spidey. Sarah King (that funny teacher on Insta) found me and asked me to visit RMHC with her and Sarah Weston (gifted and talented teacher on Instagram) while they were donating their time to visit and cook for the day.

 

  I once Again asked the community for some small donations and took the kids up some gifts and visited everyone there. With my beautiful wife Glenda. It was a huge success. We’ve been a frequent part of the RMHC Community there since and hope I can continue that.

 

  As I’ve met some amazing children and families it’s been so damn rewarding and following their journeys is just inspiring even if sometimes, quite sad of course.

 

  It’s also how I got to meet and follow Ollie Jepson and Lisa McFarlane with her little Eliza, Sheridan and her Little Quinn, all of whom spent a long time in Westmead Houses and are back home receiving treatments now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Even a beautiful friend I have now by the name of Tiara Jade, here on the south coast, who’s been through multiple treatments for her breast cancer, she has the most amazing posts and makes me smile, I love you all so much.

 

  By the time Christmas rolled around in 2022 the awesome Team of Throttle Jockies who had raised just under 52k for Illawarra convoy continued raising funds by holding a Santa Photo Day at a Santa Hut they had made through the year with help from the community.

 

  I offered to visit on the day and had the idea to ask them kindly of I could borrow the hut to help raise for A Toy Drive for RMHC Westmead by being Spider-Man Santa.

 

  With the help from my now amazing Event Manager and business friend Kelly Lorimer and My lifelong mate Roberto Vazquez, my business partner Angela aka Spidey Gwen, we had only 2 weeks to plan and run the event and had over 50 families turn up, raising $1000 to buy toys and gifts for Families and staff at the houses.

 

 

 

 

My wife and I took it up with us for their Annual Christmas Party and tried not to outshine Santa on the day. It was amazing. Seeing some of my No 1 fans again and just being a part of it all in some way, even just a little help to distract them from the everyday of treatments, I just can’t describe in words how good it feLT AND I HAVENT STOPPED SINCE.

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