IT was a day for young and old when Mitchell Aubusson returned to his Ballina Seagulls junior rugby league club.
Aubusson, 33, only recently retired after 14 seasons in the NRL which saw him play 306 games at the Sydney Roosters.
He was joined at Ballina by Jake Friend, Brett Morris and Jared Waerea-Hargreaves.
The Roosters have been using Mullumbimby as a training base and spent the weekend attending junior rugby league sign-ons across the Northern Rivers.
"It's all about giving back to the community and saying thank you," Aubusson said.
"I owe a lot to this club, there are friends and family here today who have supported me since I was a little boy.
"We have some players here who the kids might not have seen before, so it's great to see the smiles on their faces.
"The boys have been based around Brunswick Heads, we've had the whole squad here for pre-season training."
Casino product and Roosters assistant coach Matt King took a group to his junior club at the Cougars.
There was also visits for clubs at Lismore, Mullumbimby and Lennox Head.
Aubusson is now in a management recruitment role at the club having only hung up the boots in October.
He finished as a three-time premiership winner and the most capped Roosters player ahead of club legends Anthony Minicheillo and Luke Ricketson.
"The Roosters are a great club, I want to stay here and help bring the next generation through," Aubusson said.
"I feel like I can play a big part in that from the role I'm in."
One of the players coming through who was at Ballina was rising star Joseph Suaalii (pictured).
Suaalii is expected to be one of the next big things in the NRL with the Roosters beating South Sydney and Rugby Australia to his signature.
The Roosters will seek and exemption to allow Suaalii to play NRL before he turns 18 in August
"I remember being a 16-year-old kid living in Ballina and just wanting to play one NRL game," Aubusson said.
"I was blessed to play a lot of footy at a great club and now I've got a chance to give something back."