North Melbourne Grand Final Breakfast

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The North Melbourne Grand Final Breakfast is a breakfast function organised by the North Melbourne Football Club on the morning of the AFL Grand Final. The breakfast marks the traditional beginning to Grand Final day and is one of the biggest social highlights on the Australian sporting calendar. Watching the event is a ritual for many footy fans and the function plays a huge role in the pre match build up for the Grand Final.


The first Grand Final Breakfast was held in 1967 at the Southern Cross hotel, as a valuable fundraising event. The inaugural guest speaker was the VFL's Administrative director Eric McCutchan. The event rose to prominence in the 1970s when the breakfast began to be televised across Victoria, and was officially endorsed by the VFL as the official pre-match Grand Final function. Since then the event has grown into a significant money raiser for North Melbourne, and the guest list has grown to include Prime Ministers, State Premiers and other celebrities.[1]


Although many clubs hold their own Grand Final Breakfasts, the North Melbourne Breakfast was the first breakfast and is currently the only breakfast to be officially endorsed by the AFL. This ensures a guest list that reads as a 'who's who' of Australian business, sport, entertainment and politics. The breakfast includes a Grand Auction, with all proceeds being donated to the Starlight Children's Foundation.[2]


Former Prime Minister Bob Hawke described the event as “one of this nation’s great traditions”.

Paul Keating referred to the function as “a tradition in itself”

Prime Minister John Howard described it as “a tremendous institution …. and the most eclectic gathering of people you could possibly imagine”. [3]


Year Location Guest speaker Football Personality of the Year North Melbourne's Media Award Sponsor
1967 Southern Cross Hotel Eric McCutchan Not Awarded Not Awarded
1968 Southern Cross Hotel Bruce Andrews Ted Whitten
1969 Southern Cross Hotel Sir Henry Winneke Kevin Murray
1970 Southern Cross Hotel Honourable Donald Chipp Norm Smith
1971 Southern Cross Hotel Bob Hawke Ron Barrassi
1972 Southern Cross Hotel Sir John Gorton Ron Casey
1973 Southern Cross Hotel Jack Galbally Keith Greig
1974 Southern Cross Hotel Jim Cairns Doug Wade
1975 Southern Cross Hotel Sir Rupert Hamer Lou Richards
1976 Southern Cross Hotel Malcolm Fraser Eric McCutchan
1977 Southern Cross Hotel Phillip Adams John Kennedy
1978 Southern Cross Hotel Norman Banks HSV7's World of Sport
1979 Southern Cross Hotel Peter Thompson Barry Cable
1980 Southern Cross Hotel Jack Thompson Jack Hamilton
1981 Southern Cross Hotel Kevin Bartlett Jack Dyer
1982 Southern Cross Hotel Malcolm Fraser Tom Hafey & Malcolm Blight
1983 Southern Cross Hotel Bob Hawke Kevin Bartlett Doug Heywood
1984 Southern Cross Hotel Olympic medallists Bernie Quinlan Scott Palmer
1985 Southern Cross Hotel Allen Aylett John Kennedy Harry Beitzel
1986 Southern Cross Hotel Jack Hamilton Leigh Matthews Ron Carter
1987 Southern Cross Hotel John Winneke Wayne Schimmelbusch Tom Lahiff
1988 Southern Cross Hotel Sir Llew Edwards Allan Jeans Graham Dawson & Peter Booth
1989 Southern Cross Hotel Tony Fitzgerald QC Simon Madden Ian Major
1990 Southern Cross Hotel Professor Geoffrey Blainey Michael Tuck Bill Jacobs
1991 Southern Cross Hotel Thomas Keneally Jim Stynes Bob Davis
1992 Southern Cross Hotel Dr. Don Cordner Collingwood FC Centenary Rex Hunt
1993 Southern Cross Hotel Malcolm Turnbull Alan Schwab Harry Beitzel & Tom Lahiff
1994 Southern Cross Hotel John "Darcy" Dugan Tony Shaw & Doug Hawkins Coodabeen Champions
1995 Exhibition Building David Hill Tony Lockett Mike Sheahan
1996 Exhibition Building Bryce Courtenay Ross Oakley Eddie McGuire Toshiba
2000 Crown Casino John Howard Paul Salmon[4]
2001 AXA
2002 Docklands Stadium AXA
2003 AXA
2004 Glenn Archer & Anthony Stevens AXA
2005 "Strauchanie"
2006 TAC
2007 TAC
2008 The Grand Hyatt Leigh Matthews
2009 Exhibition Centre Interactive
2010 Plenary Hall, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre Julia Gillard Bruce McAvaney[5]
2011 Etihad Stadium Julia Gillard Barry Hall
2012 Etihad Stadium Stephen Conroy[6] Blackwoods[7]
2013 Etihad Stadium Kevin Sheedy[8] Blackwoods
2014 Etihad Stadium[9] Julie Bishop Lenny Hayes[10] Blackwoods
2015 Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre Blackwoods
2016 Plenary Hall, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre[11] Malcolm Turnbull Kyle Chalmers (Sports Personality)[12] Sarah Jones Mazda

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The Clubs – The Complete History of Every Club in the VFL/AFL ISBN 0-670-87858-8
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Getty Images". Getty Images. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  5. ^ Dennehy, Luke (25 September 2010). "GF Breakfast before the bounce". News Corporation. Herald Sun. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  6. ^ Silmalis, Linda (29 September 2012). "Abbott's star turn at North Melbourne Grand Final breakfast". News Corporation. The Sunday Telegraph. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  7. ^ "Iconic Breakfast on sale". North Melbourne Football Club. North Melbourne Football Club. 27 May 2015. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  8. ^ Twomey, Callum. "Record crowd at North Melbourne GF breakfast". Australian Football League. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  9. ^ "Grand Final Breakfast". Etihad Stadium. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  10. ^ Guthrie, Ben (27 September 2014). "A Grand beginning". North Melbourne Football Club. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  11. ^ "Iconic Breakfast on sale". Retrieved 20 February 2017. 
  12. ^ Whiting, Michael (1 October 2016). "North hosts Grand Final Breakfast". Retrieved 20 February 2017. 

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