Marsha Chartrand

Event builds team spirit for the Dutch football program

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About 60 members of the Manchester Flying Dutchmen football program participated in a special team-building event on Friday, Aug. 19. Photo courtesy of Rachal Carson.

About 60 members of the Manchester Flying Dutchmen football program participated in a special team-building event on Friday, Aug. 19. Photo courtesy of Rachal Carson.

“Friday Night Lights” started off early last Friday at the Manchester Athletic Complex, with about 30 Varsity and JV football players and 30 more members of the Youth Football program joining together on the field for a fun team-building event organized by varsity players Caleb Goodell and Hunter Carson.

Starting at 8 pm on Friday, the entire crew gathered on the football field under the lights for drills, informal practices, and game films. At 11 pm, it was time for the younger players to be picked up by their parents, but the high school football teams (along with some parent chaperones) ended up camping out in tents all night on the football field for some additional team bonding time.

“We came up with this idea to bring the entire football program together, from flag football to varsity level,” Goodell said. “We got the idea from Saline, but they had only the high school teams involved. We wanted to involve the Youth Football kids, so they could see what their future is in this program.”

The lights will go on again Thursday, August 25, for the Junior Varsity opener against Clinton High School. Game time is 6:30 pm. The Varsity’s first home game is set for Friday, Sept. 9, at 7 pm.

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Football players of all ages gathered on the field last Friday night for an exercise in teamwork.

Hunter Carson (left) and Caleb Goodell (right) developed the idea for Friday's event from a similar tradition in Saline.

Hunter Carson (left) and Caleb Goodell (right) developed the idea for Friday’s event from a similar tradition in Saline.

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