This is the first installment of the monthly “Mudhogs Evolution” newsletter. The Farmington Valley Mudhogs are undergoing a renaissance this year and this newsletter will hopefully keep you up to date with everything that is going on in the league.
Here is a list of everything that is new so far this year:
Board of Directors:
Probably the most significant change for the Mudhogs Organization is that there is a completely new Board this year. Please feel free to contact any of us if you have any suggestions, questions, or concerns.
PRESIDENT: Paul Stanislaw - firstname.lastname@example.org
VICE PRESIDENT: Dion Welch - email@example.com
SECRETARY: Jen Lavore - firstname.lastname@example.org
TREASURER: Bill Ronalter - email@example.com
EQUIPMENT MANAGERS: Rob Gazdowicz - firstname.lastname@example.org & Mike Mihalek -email@example.com
WEBSITE MANAGERS: Christa Ronalter - firstname.lastname@example.org & Dion Welch -email@example.com
CHEER DIRECTOR: Amanda Piccoli - firstname.lastname@example.org & Nicole Giampaola -email@example.com
FLAG DIRECTOR: Robert Phillips - firstname.lastname@example.org
SAFETY DIRECTOR: Elliott Halpern - email@example.com
FUNDRAISING DIRECTOR: Jackie Halpern - firstname.lastname@example.org
FARMINGTON TOWN REP: Kevin Watson
AVON TOWN REP: Jen Lavore - email@example.com
BURLINGTON/HARWINTON TOWN REP: Mike Cormier
Formation of the Nutmeg Youth Football League (NYFL):
For the past two or three seasons the Mudhogs have been playing West Hartford and Southington. This year, the Farmington Valley Mudhogs, West Hartford, and Southington have finalized the formation of the Nutmeg Youth Football League. This means that we have adopted an official set of rules to standardize all aspects of play between the three programs. In addition, a governing board has been created to enforce the rules set forth by the NFYL. One of the priorities of the NYFL is to expand the league to improve the diversity of the teams we play.
NFL Flag Football:
This year the Farmington Valley Mudhogs are putting much more effort and resources into improving our NFL Flag Football experience. NFL Flag Football will have one practice on Friday nights and will have one game on Sundays. The Flag football program is structured for children (boys and girls) who have other sports commitments (soccer, fall baseball, etc) and who would also like to play football. The emphasis on the flag program is for the kids to just have fun without impacting their other sports commitments. Sunday games are one hour long with a 7 on 7 format. Participants will receive a NFL Flag team t-shirt. There will be team coaches and there will be officials present to officiate all of the games.
THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IN THIS ENTIRE NEWSLETTER IT THAT WE NEED YOU (The Mudhogs Community) to spread the word about the NFL Flag Program. The more kids who participate in the flag program, the better the experience will be. We will be advertising the program heavily this spring and summer, but the most effective outreach is word of mouth by parents and children alike. All of our children have friends who want to play football, but for one reason or another they are not able to play tackle football. The flag program gives those kids the opportunity to play. So please, talk up the program with your friends.
Partnering with Farmington Parks & Recreation:
In order to guarantee access to fields and to expand our outreach to increase participation in NFL Flag Football, Tackle Football and Cheer we partnered with Farmington Parks & Recreation this year. This partnership may impact how we register for the upcoming season, but the details of registering still remain undecided. We plan on opening registration for the 2017 season on our website May 1, 2017. If there are any changes to this, we will let you know as soon as possible.
We are in the process of upgrading our website to make it more user friendly and up to date with more current technology.
Major Rule Changes for the 2017 Season:
Duration of Quarters:
C-Level and B-Level will return to 10 minute quarters.
A-Level will remain at 12 minute quarters.
Change from age based levels to grade based levels:
C-Level: 3rd & 4th Grades (Cannot turn 11 years old before 9/1 of the upcoming season) with available older lighter rule for 5th graders
B-Level 5th & 6th Grades (Cannot turn 13 years old before 9/1 of the upcoming season) with available older lighter rule for 7th graders
A-Level 7th & 8th Grades (Cannot turn 15 years old before 9/1 of the upcoming season)
Mudhogs Awareness Days:
This year we will be holding Mudhog Awareness Days in Burlington, Unionville, and Avon (please see the calendar of events below for dates). We will have a table with a Mudhogs Flag, Tackle, and Cheer banner in front of Cumberland Farms in Burlington, Stop & Shop in Unionville, and Walmart in Avon. In order to engage the patrons of these stores, and to increase community awareness of the Mudhogs Flag, Tackle, and Cheer programs we need children from each town to staff their table. The children will be wearing their game jerseys and cheer outfits. Last fall we had a very successful event at the Unionville Stop & Shop using this same format. The children were wonderful in engaging people and getting them to donate (the fall event was a fundraiser) and the children had fun doing it. The more the merrier, and having the kids there makes all the difference in the world. So, if you can help out, please contact Jackie Halpern via email ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) so that she can get a head count. Thank you in advance for your time and efforts.
Calendar of Events:
For those of you trying to plan your summer vacations, here is a list of important dates. Again, we are trying to make registration and evaluations more user friendly. To better accommodate peoples’ summer vacations, we are holding three separate evaluation days. The evaluation days will be on different days, and different weeks in the end of July and the beginning of August (see below). Each child will only have to participate in one evaluation day.
5/01/2017 On-line registration is open all leagues
5/06/2017 (Saturday) Mudhogs Awareness Day at Burlington Cumberland Farms, 10AM to 1PM
6/03/2017 (Saturday) Mudhogs Awareness Day at Unionville Stop & Shop, 10AM to 2PM
6/10/2017 (Saturday) Mudhogs Awareness Day at Avon Walmart, 10AM to 12PM
7/18/2017 (Tuesday) First Evaluation Day Tackle, Location TBD, 6PM to 8PM
7/27/2017 (Thursday) Second Evaluation Day Tackle, Location TBD, 6PM to 8PM
8/02/2017 (Wednesday) Third and Final Evaluation Day Tackle, Location TBD, 6PM to 8PM
8/03/2017 (Thursday) Team Draft Tackle
8/07/2017 (Monday) Team Practices Start Without Pads (M, TU, W, TH)
8/13/2017 (Saturday) Equipment Pick-Up at Roo Storage in Farmington
8/18/17 NFL Flag Football First Practice
8/27/17 NFL Flag Football First Game
August Practice will be M, TU, W, TH until school starts. Once school starts, practice will be M, W, F (unless otherwise specified by your coaches)
First Game will be either Saturday or Sunday of Labor Day Weekend
Games at Farmington and West Hartford will be on Sundays.
Games at Southington will be on Saturdays
Thank you all for your continued support.
The Farmington Valley Mudhogs Board