While emphasizing player participation and the development of football skills, The Dalles Youth Football League sprung into action looking to offer chances for boys and girls to develop the love of football from an early age.
However, over the past few years in the gorge, many boys and girls under six years old stood on the sidelines while their peers engaged in football activities.
For the third year, they will get the opportunity to toss the pigskin, run for touchdowns and spin and juke their opponents during summer flag football sessions.
The Dalles Youth Football organization has announced its flag football program that is open for children in the first and second grades for play tentatively for the start of August of 2014.
Online registration is currently open for kids in the first-through-sixth grade.
The early bird price of $80 runs through May 10, and after that date the cost swells to $100.
New prices have been set for siblings at $75 and the flag rate is still $40.
All athletes have until July 31 to sign up.
At the signup, parents need to furnish a birth certificate and a proof of insurance card.
The goal of the TDYF is to introduce young players to the game of football, assisting them with developing their athletic abilities and potential while encouraging good sportsmanship and fun.
TDYF is a volunteer-based organization and counts on parents/guardians to assist with hosting games, running concessions, assisting with fundraising activities and coaching teams.
Player registration dates will also include signups for volunteer opportunities and additional fundraisers for the 2014 season.
Tackle football coach Nick DeLeon is hopeful that the popularity of the sport grows from year-to-year.
“If you’re able to work with kids at a young age and start developing good habits early, that’ll help pave a structurally sound road in the future,” said DeLeon. “If you’re able to start the kids young, it saves coaches at the upper levels the extra time to teach these kids the As, Bs and Cs of football.”
From July 22-26, TDW’s football program will host its annual Youth Football Camp at Wahtonka High.
Parents will also be able to sign their kids up while at the camp.
On Aug. 5-8, TDYF is kicking off its conditioning camp for all players as they prepare for the first day of practice on Aug. 12.
The season opening jamboree is set for Aug. 30 on Sid White Field and games tentatively start on Saturday, Sept. 6.
For more information, interested parties can visit www.eteamz.com/thedallesyouthfootball.