The schools of the area all broke through coverage together, this past weekend, to celebrate the growth of the football, coming out of the COVID-19 shutdown.
The football teams of Shas Ti Kelly Road, College Heights, PGSS and Nechako Valley from School District 91 in Vanderhoof all came together at Masich Place Stadium for a set of football activities to cap off their school programs. It was the annual Spring Football Jamboree for the Varsity and Freshman age divisions.
“Jamboree games are controlled scrimmages that take place after a three-week schedule of 10 practices,” said Steve Porter, a support teacher and football coach at Shas Ti. “The intent of Spring Football is to help players transition from Freshman to Varsity and to provide an opportunity for new players to try the sport before committing to a three-month fall season.”
It was also a chance for coaches and other football leaders in the area to meet up in the spirit of friendly competition to talk shop and compare notes. They might be competitors from kickoff to final gun, but in all other ways they are colleagues working to give local youth the best chance of enjoying their sport and using that for motivation and concentration at school.
“This year was by far the best attended Jamboree in terms of teams and roster size, which bodes very well for the Fall,” said Porter. “Football is probably the fastest growing team sport in PG right now, due in large part to the launch of the BC Football Conference expansion team, the Prince George Kodiaks (of the Canadian Junior Football League).”
Porter said the Kodiaks had a presence at the Jamboree, and there were some former CFL players on hand to show the aspiring local players some star power.
The local secondary school football community is looking ahead with the hopes of seeing Duchess Park participate in both the Varsity and Freshman divisions this fall, and after a six-year absence there is also momentum from DP Todd to regain entry into SD57’s football zone as well.