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Opinion: Support Peekskill Titans Youth Football

This past Sunday, we spent a beautiful afternoon watching the Peekskill Youth Football League host Red Hook at Depew Stadium for an afternoon of one of American’s favorite pastimes.

Granted, we were there because our 5-year-old plays in the Tiny Mights division of the Pop Warner League, but if you like football, it’s a great way to spend the early part of the day before the NFL kickoff, whether you have kids playing or not. They need your support.?

For those who don’t know, the Peekskill Titans are the namesake of Peekskill’s Pop Warner football league. They are coached by an exceptionally committed and highly demanding group of gentlemen from Peekskill, many of whom don’t even have kids in the league, but simply love football. The Peekskill Titans have three divisions: the Tiny Mights, who are the littlest of the little guys, ranging from 5 to 7 years old; the Junior Pee Wees, who range from 8 to 11 years old; and the big boys (as our 5-year-old calls them), the Pee Wees, who range from 9 to 12 years old.

We have been personally impressed with the coaches’ ability to take our shy kindergartener, get him to come out of his shell, and actively participate in practices and games. In fact, it took almost four weeks of committed encouragement on the part of the coaches to get our painfully shy son to muster the courage to get on the field and participate. They never gave up on him and we’re thankful they didn’t. He played his first game Sunday and enjoyed every minute of it, as did his proud parents.??

The league is run by Darryl Francis, who coordinates the players, teams, uniforms and sponsorship, all while coaching the littlest of the Titans, the Tiny Mights. He is supported by a very small, devoted group of parents who try to raise the funds needed to make sure the kids have safe helmets and decent uniforms, and that no child who wants to play is restricted because of the cost. They have yet to break even and continue to struggle to meet the costs of maintaining the league. While it’s a financially strapped league, with extremely limited resources, the kids, the coaches and the parents have more heart than most organizations with 10 times the financial and community support.??

We urge you: On Sundays, after service at church or before you settle in for the Jets or Giants kickoff, put on a gold or yellow shirt, grab a spot on the bleachers at Depew Stadium and cheer on the Peekskill Titans. And while you’re there, if you own a business, think about a sponsorship to help offset some costs; if you’re just simply a spectator, grab a hamburger or two from the concession stand — every dollar counts. But most of all, show some pride, bring some cheer and consider making Peekskill Titans football part of your Sunday tradition.

Sincerely,

Mike & Christina Morey?

Peekskill, N.Y.

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