American Legion Set To Kick Off Flag Football Season

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Flag football players in the midst of an intense game last season.

The American Legion Viggo E. Sewer Post 131’s popular co-ed flag football league is gearing up to kick off its fourth season, and St. John girls and boys ages 9 to 14 are welcome to join the fun.

The league, which began in summer 2006, has grown to nearly 80 players, and the local American Legion expects to have at least six teams this season.

“We may have more, but we’re going to shoot for six teams this season just like last season,” said league coordinator Paul Devine. “We’ll be using the American Legion rules which are based on NFL rules, except we changed the co-ed regulations and age limits so all the kids can play together.”

Getting Kids Active
The season’s game schedule has changed to accommodate rain dates, explained Devine. Rather than play all three weekly games on Saturdays, two games will be played each Saturday and one game each Monday evening, leaving a third time slot on Saturday open for makeup games.

The flag football league, which continues to grow in popularity, is a good experience for Love City youth, explained Devine.

“It’s an athletic training experience, and it certainly has become a popular place for kids to go and have something to do after school and on weekends,” said the league coordinator. “It’s also a benefit for parents to get their kids active and to learn a new skill.”

In addition to staying active, players will receive the added benefit of a little positive publicity. Flag footballers can look forward to seeing their team’s statistics along with a wrap-up of each week’s games in the St. John Tradewinds.

While the American Legion never turns a child away from its flag football league, parents should be advised that teams fill up quickly. The league will host jamborees on March 1 and 8 at noon at the V.I. National Park ball field, where parents can register their children for the league. League coaches will also work with the kids on basic skills at both jamborees, so kids should come ready to play. Practices begin on March 9.

The American Legion relies on sponsors to keep its league running. Any local residents or businesses interested in helping should contact Devine at 514-6615 or tallpd@vipowernet.net.

League Seeking Sponsors, Volunteers
“We do depend on sponsors to keep us going,” said Devine. “We’re seeking sponsors who’d like to donate any amount.”

The league is also seeking volunteer coaches and referees. Anyone interested should contact Devine or come to one of the jamborees.

Registration forms for players are available at Connections and Connections East, or contact Devine to obtain a printable form via email. Forms will also be available at the jamborees, and the registration fee is $20. Each child will receive a team t-shirt and mouthpiece, and the fee also covers flag equipment, footballs and first aid kits, which the American Legion provides.

At the end of the season, players can look forward to an awards ceremony and barbecue, where each child will receive a trophy.