Town of Payson Recreation Coordinator Mary Wolf continues to urge fledgling young athletes to participate in flag football, a program she considers her favorite among all the town offerings.
She also touts the co-ed gridiron program as a prime athletic endeavor for girls, saying they can compete on even terms with their male counterparts.
“Our ratio of girls to boys is about 1 to 4,” she says. “It’s a co-ed league and the girls love to play as much as the boys.”
Since flag football’s introduction to Payson in 2004, it has evolved into a popular, rapidly growing recreational sport because it is cheaper, players don’t need pounds and pounds of protective equipment and children can participate regardless of their size.
Flag football is also a chance for children to be involved in a sport without worry of serious injuries.
Also there is no bench warming as there sometimes is in tackle football programs.
“We have a maximum of 10 kids on each team so there is plenty of playing time for everyone,” said Wolf.
In the games, the offensive teams play for first downs at midfield and a touchdown in the end zone. Running and passing plays are allowed although there are “no running zones” at midfield and near each end zone.
Players will be placed in one of two age divisions, 5 to 12 years of age. Players must be at least 5 years old. For those parents interested in having their children participate in flag football, registration has begun and continues through Aug. 12. Practices will start in mid-August and games begin at the end of that month. Games are played weekday evenings on Rumsey 1. Registration is $35 and includes a game shirt, mouthpiece and practice flag belt.
Call Wolf at (928) 474-5242, ext. 7 for more information.
All ages can enjoy the town’s PATS Hikes. The next one is at 8 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 24 (not Aug. 17 as reported earlier). Meet at the Peach Orchard Trail Head, off Country Club across from the Payson Golf Course. The hike is 4-1/2 miles over easy to moderate terrain. Dress appropriately and bring water.