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Rockford Park District to offer junior tackle football this summer.

For the first time, the Rockford Park District is fielding a junior tackle football program thanks to a state grant secured by Representative Maurice West.

Rockford Wolves football is set to start playing games in July as part of the American Youth Football League. Three age divisions, 8U, 10U and 11U. It is a competitive league with training camp on May 21 and tryouts June 4.

Saturday, 85 kids got to learn a few of the fundamentals. Organizers say it’s a chance for the youth in the city to compete and learn about the game.

“It’s a great opportunity with all these new opportunities in the area,” said Austin Taylor, Youth Sports Supervisor. “Everyone will be able to play. They’ll be opportunities for everyone. I think it just shows that Rockford is really continuing to be up and coming and continuing to grow and continuing to provide things that these kids need in their community.”

“We are developing kids so when they go on to middle schools and to high schools, that they can say when they came from the Rockford Park District, that they were developed right,” said Terrence “Coach Bo” Keith. “That’s all about teaching. I got a philosophy I always say, we teach at practice, we coach the game. That’s what we’re about to do. We’re trying to teach kids how to play proper football.”

If you don’t want your kid to play tackle football, the park district is still offering the NFL Flag league. Registration for the summer season is open. For more on the Rockford Wolves, you can visit the park district’s Facebook page here.

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