10 September 2023

Spidey's superhero scavenger hunt that's helping sick kids in the Illawarra

| Keeli Royle
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Spidey and his friends at the Illawarra Light Railway Museum where the scavenger hunt is being held.

David Hunter has found a unique way to help the local community with the first ever Superhero Scavenge for Convoy. Photo: Supplied/Illawarra’s Friendly Neighbourhood Spidey.

Illawarra’s Friendly Neighbourhood Spidey is taking a short break from swinging on webs and saving a day to run a special event with superhero friends to help raise money for sick kids.

David Hunter first found himself taking on the iconic role of Spiderman just over a year ago when the Calderwood and Albion Park community fundraised to help him buy a suit and bring joy to children in the region.

And his presence has continued to grow.

“Originally it was just meant to be for schools and local daycares and then people started saying, ‘You should do parties’. I then thought, ‘What else can I do with this?’ So I started doing charities and visiting Ronald McDonald House,” David said.

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He’s seen firsthand the devastating situation many children in the Illawarra are facing and the impact of a little joy and laughter.

“Visiting the hospitals and seeing what the families and kids were going through up there, putting a smile on their faces, it really does make a huge difference,” he said.

“It’s not going to kill cancer but it’s a step towards it.”

David decided he wanted to support these families by hosting a fundraising event for the i98FM Illawarra Convoy, which has raised more than $22 million for the local community since 2005.

“I just wanted to do something different,” David said. “Everyone else was having gala dinners and fight nights and I was like, ‘What can I do?’

“Now that I’ve got a team of heroes together for the occasional party that I do I thought we could try and do something for Convoy and we all worked out that the best way was to come up with a kids or family event.”

Together they came up with the Superhero Scavenge for Convoy, a family-friendly day of fun at Illawarra Light Railway Museum where kids can decipher clues and meet their favourite characters.

“Pretty much we are going to be having a bunch of Marvel items such as Thor’s hammer, Captain America’s shield, Iron Man’s helmet – around 17 items around the museum for people to read the clues and try to find them and once they find them it leads them to Spiderman and friends, where they can take a photo or video with us and raise money for Convoy.”

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Excitement is already building ahead of the event, with businesses in the Illawarra showing their support for the important cause.

“The online ticket sales has exceeded my expectations; for my first ever event it’s been great,” David said. “I think that’s thanks to the community and i98 … we’ve got Woolworths on board now – they’re doing a whole barbecue for us paying for the meat and drinks so we can raise more money that way.

“And just a bunch of local businesses getting on board and sharing it has been the biggest thing.”

All joining together in the hope of raising a super sum of money for kids in need.

“I’m looking for a goal for 15k for Convoy this weekend – but we’ll see!”

The event will run Sunday 10 September from 10 am to 3 pm at the Illawarra Light Railway Museum at Albion Park.

Tickets can be purchased through the Illawarra’s Friendly Neighbourhood Spidey website, or at the gate on Sunday.

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