Swifties, Melbourne police officers swap friendship bracelets at Taylor Swift's Eras Tour – USA TODAY

MELBOURNE, Australia — Before 96,000 fans piled into the colossal stadium and Taylor Swift took the stage for night three of the Eras Tour in this city, about a hundred Victoria police officers were seen exchanging heaps of friendship bracelets with Swifties.
“I’ve personally never seen hype like this outside of a concert,” said Alison Noonan, the leading senior constable for the Victoria Police Department. Noonan has been on the force for 13 years. “This is next level.”
Thousands of Australians participated in “Taylor-gating,” which is showing up to a Swift concert to dance, sing and meet fellow fans outside the arena. Many couldn’t get tickets and this was the second best option. In peaceful demonstrations of happiness and community, police officers were seen engaging with young Swifties.
“This is a very wholesome night,” Noonan said. “It’s a really fun, energetic night, and we don’t normally get this in our line of work. We love when the kids come up, feel like they can approach us and feel safe knowing that we’re here to help them.”
If there was a favorite child on the Eras Tour, it might be Melbourne. Not only is the stadium the largest the singer has ever played, she made it known how much she loves Australia’s most populous city with her secret song surprises and “Champagne Problems” speeches.
“A dream crowd,” the Eras Tour singer said Sunday night, “that’s what this is, it’s the crowd you saw in your childhood bedroom and you were like, ‘I want to be a singer.'”
The first night, Swift made an announcement about a new song, “The Bolter,” off her 11th album “The Tortured Poets Department” and played “You’re Losing Me,” a song she’s never performed live. On night two, she did a triple mashup of “Getaway Car,” “August” and “The Other Side of the Door.” For night three, she did a mashup of “Come Back…Be Here” and “Daylight.”
Swift has five days before she will perform in her second Down Under city, Sydney.
Follow Bryan West, the USA TODAY Network’s Taylor Swift reporter, on InstagramTikTok and X as @BryanWestTV.



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