It was 2010, and Chairman John Witheriff and a number of senior AFL executives were locked away inside the Wooli Surf Club, feasting on some local Chinese takeaway and a few beers.
Passer-bys from the local Caravan Park were celebrating at the bar, others waging their bets at the TAB counter.
For the better part of the evening, Witheriff and his guests were submerged in hundreds of potential Gold Coast SUNS theme songs, taking down notes on the most impressionable tracks.
The hour had past 9:30pm, until Sam Eustice – the club’s Commercial Manager, emerged with an original tune composed by Rosco Elliott.
Boasting a tune reminiscent of a VFL classic, the trumpet/high bass mash-up was an immediate hit.
It wasn’t long before those at the bar quickly joined in, bashing out the song at the top of the lungs.
Fast forward four years and the inaugural leader of the Gold Coast Football Club board remembers the historic evening as if it was yesterday, recalling the birth of the club’s now prominent “We are the SUNS of the Gold Coast Sky” on ABC Coast FM.
“One of the great challenges in establishing the SUNS was to identify a club song.
“We'd been surfing for the day and had adjourned to the Wooli Surf Club for beers and Chinese.
“Sam Eustice, who is our Commercial Manager, played this song a couple of times and we were really wrapt with the trumpets and the locals betting on the TAB came over and joined us, as did those form the local caravan park.”
“Later on we were walking home in the street, and were still singing the song,” Witheriff told Coast FM.
On his return to the Gold Coast, Witheriff said it didn’t take much to convince GC SUNS CEO Travis Auld, with the leading administrator immediately jumping on board the catchy tune.
“I remember waking up the next morning and went to speak to Travis, and said – Mate, I think we’ve got it.
“He was in love with and, and ultimately the board brought in and the song started in the bowls club over Chinese and beers.”
Looking ahead, Witheriff remains confident the club is heading in the right direction, with many of the club’s young stars in Dion Prestia, David Swallow and Jaeger O’Meara now among the biggest names in the AFL.
Confident the side can build on their defining 2013 campaign, Witheriff holds high ambitions for the club both on and off the field in 2014.
“In 2014, I really do think we are going to improve, and in 2015 I’d like to think we can bring home the silverware.
“Look, it is a really tough ask but I really believe in these young men.
“The one thing that is certain is that these men, not boys, are going to make the Gold Coast proud and we’re going to have fun.”