A major revitalisation of the Kāpiti Bears Rugby League Club has been under way at Matthews Park in Raumati South.
A rallying of support started when word got out that the club wasn't in great shape.
It was time to turn things around, especially with a possible closure on the cards, not just for the short-term, but the long-term.
Lots of work has been happening at committee level to get the club back on a strong footing starting with getting the bookkeeping in order.
With paperwork sorted, attention turned to the clubrooms, which had seen better days.
The male and female bathrooms are sparkling with new toilets, tiling and fittings.
New lighting has been installed throughout, creating a brighter main room.
Walls and ceilings have been given a new lick of paint.
A new trophy wall cabinet has been created to showcase the club's silverware as well as an old photograph of club founders Maurice Tito, Pehi Parata and Billy Allen.
Old furniture has been replaced with smart new tables and chairs.
Outside, floodlights which haven't been operational for five years have been reinstated.
"It has all been sponsored by people who want to see the place on its feet," chairman John Smith said.
"There has probably been about $60,000 of free labour poured into it."
The club missed out on a grant for a new roof but will reapply again soon.
"We have to get the roof replaced and some of the outside needs a tidy up but we're working on it."
It's an impressive undertaking from a group of people passionate about the game and the club's proud history.
The changes have attracted new members including Darren Littlewood, who has close connections with the Leeds Rhinos, and whose company NZ MEP Fabrications is the Bears' main sponsor.
"There was a great feel about the club with people who want to take it forward," Littlewood said. "So I wanted to get involved and help too.
"I'm over the moon with what has been achieved in such a short space of time.
"People have put a lot of time into it and we're starting to see the rewards.
"But we've got to keep going. I think it's going to be an amazing next few years."
Another highlight had been the club's involvement in a school's programme.
"The reviews that are coming back are pretty good," Smith said.
"The club is now working on an interschool one-day junior competition to be held here in May.
"We're getting trophies for it. The response from schools has been incredible."
In the meantime, the rugby league season is under way with the club mustering a masters, women's, 13s, 11s and 8/7s teams.
When each home game has finished, players will get to enjoy an inviting family-friendly clubrooms.
No doubt they will receive words of encouragement and even a few tips especially from life member Matthew Down, who has helped a lot with the revitalisation.
Down was the club's (then called Gold Coast Rugby League Club) first signed player when it started in the early 1970s.
He had been playing for Paraparaumu Rugby Club but wasn't getting a lot of game time.
"I always loved going to training but on game day I'd always be a reserve and only get to play the last 10 minutes.
"In the end I said to the coach that I'd had enough and left.
"I went to the pub [Paraparaumu Hotel] to drown my sorrows and met the three wise men [Tito, Parata and Allen] who asked if I wanted to play rugby league."
After training for about six months, the club started playing in competition level in 1972.
It went from strength to strength, playing in various grades, and honing the talents of many people including Kiwis great Stephen Kearney when he was a junior in the early to mid-80s.
Smith said the latest changes wasn't "a one year thing".
"It's going to take a bit longer than that. But the progress to date has been amazing and the people around it are very good."
The club's 50th anniversary next year is looking bright.