Yeppoon Swans raise $105,000 for MND

Capricornia media personalities, local identities, AFL Queensland staff and Watkins family members braved the freezing cold temperatures for the Yeppoon Swans’ third annual Freeze MND Yeppoon event on Saturday, to raise more than $105,000 for Motor Neurone Disease.

This year’s event was dedicated to Life Member and long-time supporter of the Yeppoon Swans Gabe Watkin, who passed away from Motor Neurone Disease in November 2021. The 2022 event was renamed in her honour. 

Twenty-nine people slid down a slide to be dunked into freezing cold, icy water. The event was so popular that the club smashed their initial target of $60,000 to raise almost double. More than 1,500 people came through the gate at Swan Park to support the event, making it the club’s most successful yet.  

Yeppoon Swans President Peter Watkins said the club was overwhelmed with the community’s support.

“On behalf of the club, I was to send out a huge thanks to our great little community,” he said.

“For the town of Yeppoon and surrounds to achieve this staggering total really is a testament to the Central Queensland spirit.

“Thank you to those near and far who supported this important cause.

“Gabe was a truly treasured member of our club and we are proud to continue to support this cause in her memory.”

Donations can be made here: Freeze MND Yeppoon – DIY Big Freeze 8 (

Saturday’s 29 sliders:

  1. Zac Whitehead (Nephew of Gabe Watkin)
  2. Mal Cochrane (General Manager Keppel Bay Sailing Club)
  3. Vicky Northe (Support Worker)
  4. Anne Fursman (Owner Intersport Yeppoon)
  5. Erin Beattie (Owner Intersport Yeppoon)
  6. Bec Triplett (Gabe’s Carer)
  7. Natalie Cumming (Owner Regals Dental)
  8. Pinky Neven (Triple M Radio Host)
  9. Sammy Nicholls (Swans Player)
  10. Megan Slade (Deputy Principal St Ursula’s College)
  11. Robert Corboy (Principal St Brendan’s College)
  12. Roxi Furber (Local Personal Trainer)
  13. Linda Wallin (Friend of Gabe’s)
  14. Julie Chapman (Local Community Member and Friend of Gabe’s)
  15. Dan Watkin (Gabe’s Son)
  16. Cameron Watkin (Gabe’s Son)
  17. Georgia Harris (Player of Yeppoon Swans Womens Team)
  18. Lucas Hall (Player of opposition team Boyne Island Tannum Sands Saints)
  19. Brent Sommer (Representative of club sponsor Betta Home Living Yeppoon)
  20. Conrad Franklin (Local Builder of CSF Homes and former Swans Player)
  21. Corey Marston (Operations Manager NRG Electrical)
  22. Kellie Roth (Friend of Gabe, former Women’s Player of Swans, Club sponsor)
  23. Brett Terry (Manager Ian Weigh Toyota Yeppoon)
  24. Natalie Rogers (Local Community Member)
  25. Barry Gibson (Community Football Manager QLD)
  26. Christian Burgess (Yeppoon Swans Senior Coach)
  27. Ruby Bird (Daughter of club sponsor Birdy’s Refrigeration)
  28. Mark Taylor (Yeppoon Swans Life Member and friend of Gabe’s)
  29. Jay Stafford (Local Yeppoon Plumber and player of Yeppoon Seagulls Rugby League)


Photo credit: George Vartabedia

Our Supporters