The Ascot Vale Panthers Football Club, established in 1898 is one of the most successful foundation teams in the Essendon District Football League.
In 2017 the club restarted it's juniors program with the an under 9's team that hopes to re-establish Ascot Vale FC as one of the dominant teams known for sportsmanship, skill and family in the competition for the future.
The Ascot Vale Football Club previously competed in the Senior and Junior divisions of EDFL as a founding member in 1930 through to its final season in 1997. Since 1997 the Ascot Vale Panthers has been men’s Over 35s and Over 50s ‘Supers’ and ‘Masters’ teams.
Playing in the AFL Masters Metro competition, the Ascot Vale Panthers fields two Over 35s teams and an over 50s team playing local at Walter St Reserve in Ascot Vale. It’s always prided itself on being a family club with all players putting work and family commitments before playing footy. Even still, the club has always been competitive regularly making finals during the past 10 years.
AFL Masters is a well-organised competition with a set of modified rules designed to reduce the risks of injury and has the benefit of being acknowledged and supported by the AFL and the Australian Sports Commission. The opportunity to participate at a club level, to be competitive, maintain fitness and to above all enjoy footy with friends and family is the main motivation of the players. Clubs throughout the Victorian metro area play every second Sunday during the 10-game season consisting of 4 x 15-minute quarters. The fortnightly draw allows for plenty of recovery time whilst allowing players and families plenty of time to themselves. Training is just once a week at 6:30 for those who can make it!
On March 17, 2017 the EDFL announced the inclusion of Ascot Vale as an expansion club for the 2017 season. Past Players and current players of the Ascot Vale Panthers had always had the passion to bring the football club back to the suburb of Ascot Vale can be thanked for the rebirth. In 2017 we started off with trying to field one Under 9s team. From having 9 players in our first game of the year in Round 1 to 29 players in our last game of the year in Round 14 was an absolute credit to everyone involved.
In the true spirit of the Panthers, the kids enjoyed visits from AFL Players Jayden Laverde and Conor McKenna from the AFL Essendon Football Club as well as Libby Birch from the AFLW Western Bulldogs. Along with Presentation Night, the kids enjoyed Panther Pie Night, Panther Pizza Night and Footy Card Trade Night after training. There was even a family training night with all mums and dads joining in on a full training session and practice match (Parents claiming victory!). After training the kids and parents have been welcome to join the “old men” for the Panthers Over 35s training. During game days, the members of the committee setup a kids jumping castle on the sidelines and cooked bacon and egg rolls in the early morning.
In season 2018 the Ascot Vale Panthers are expanding with new teams for under 9s and under 11s boys and girls. Come and join the family club which is situated at Walter St Reserve in the heart of the Ascot Vale community.