It promises to be fun for all the family when the Bay of Plenty Steamers take on Northland at the Rotorua International Stadium.

The game will be played under lights tonight with kick-off at the special time of 5.45pm - early enough for children to go, and late enough for people who have just finished work.

This year the union is putting effort into creating family friendly matches and a family zone has been created for the match.

"The Mitre 10 Cup and the BOP Union are all about being family friendly. We want to create special memories for kids, dads and mums," said BOP Rugby Union media and marketing manager, Amanda Thompson.


Entry for the game has been kept to the low price of $5 per child, and the family zone will be operating half an hour before the match. Children's skills and drills, autograph signing, and plenty of give-aways have been organised for the zone.

It's been a long time between drinks to find a champion Bay of Plenty team. But one does exist, and if you want to actually witness who was in it, you will get to see the team tonight.

The champion 1976 Bay of Plenty team will be in attendance, and it will watch as junior club players do a march past the crowd before kick-off.

"It's all about connecting to the clubs, and representing the people and places they come from," said Ms Thompson.

The Steamers will be wearing their club socks instead of Bay of Plenty socks to show who they represent.

The team has played twice in Tauranga this year, and the crowd atmosphere has been excellent. Ms Thompson is hopeful Rotorua fans will have the same level of enthusiasm when the team plays at the stadium.

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The Steamers are desperate for a win with three losses and no wins on the board in the early stages of the competition.

What: Bay of Plenty Steamers vs Northland
Where: Rotorua International Stadium
When: Today 5.45pm
Tickets: Ticketmaster or at the gate. Kids $5, adults $20.