Lara McSpadden hopes a three-day Sydney Flames promotional tour to her home town can inspire Newcastle's next generation of WNBL players.
It is something the 24-year-old Novocastrian was never able to experience as an aspiring player and the Flames forward is keen to make the most of the regional road trip, which began with clinics at Charlestown South Public School and Wallsend South Public School on Friday.
"It's pretty special to me, being my home town," McSpadden said.
"I don't actually remember any time when I was a junior that we had a WNBL team come and have presence or do any sort of thing with our club.
"So, to be able to do that now that I'm in the WNBL, that's kind of like a really cool full-circle moment."
The WNBL team are in town as part of Newcastle Basketball's association partnership with the Flames and Sydney Kings.
They will hold an open training session at Newcastle Basketball Stadium, where McSpadden plied her craft as a junior, on Saturday (3pm-5pm) and a free girls coaching clinic at the same venue on Sunday morning.
Along with McSpadden, the Sydney Flames players include Australian Opals stars Tess Madgen, Cayla George and Lauren Nicholson plus Newcastle Falcons NBL1 player Abi Curtin.
"We're the masters of our craft so I hope they learn something from us to start of with, but at the same time the main thing is just having fun," McSpadden said.
"We want girls to be having fun in sport because it's hard enough to get girls to play sport these days ... hopefully we can give them that urge to want to join a team, and come and support us too because the more they can see us the better it will be for women's sport as well.
"Just to show our faces and give them something to look toward is exciting for us as well, and to be able to give back as players, so it will be a good weekend."
McSpadden has returned to the Flames for her eighth WNBL campaign after winning the championship with Townsville Fire last season.
The 193-centimetre forward first joined the Sydney club as a 17-year-old in 2016 and won a championship in the first of four seasons before heading north to Townsville.
The Flames have had two wins and three losses in their first five outings of 2023-24.
"We're just getting our act together, learning to play together," McSpadden said.
"We have a really, really good team on paper. We're just building our foundation at the moment.
"There's definitely been good sections in each game but we're looking to get these next two wins on our double roadie next week and that will put us in a good stead before Christmas.
"We've got this weekend off, so it's a good chance to get out and make the most of that while still being able to train as a team."