Berlin Youth Football and Cheerleading Association is a non-profit youth football and cheerleading program located in the town of Berlin, Connecticut. It's goals are to teach football and cheerleading in a safe, fun environment.

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Tackle Football & Cheer-Pizza Party Thursday (8/24)
08/20/2017
Berlin Tackle Football and Cheer Players and Parents, On Thursday,...
Cheer Coaches Needed - HELP !
08/10/2017
Calling All Bears - Cheer Teams need your help!  To have...
Reminder - Tackle Practice starts Tues 8/1 @6pm
07/31/2017
A reminder to all Berlin Bear Families: Tackle Football practice...
BYFC - Online Store is OPEN!
07/28/2017
GREAT NEWS BERLIN YOUTH FOOTBALL CHEER Players, Families...
100% Berlin - Message from our President
06/04/2017
Why Berlin Youth Football & Cheer: There’s a reason...
Calling all Businesses - Sponsor Opportunity!
03/01/2017
BYFC has proudly teamed with Image Ink in offering a Sponsor...
Welcome to Bears Football!
01/25/2017
Welcome to the home of the Berlin Bears!  Watch this spot for...
 
Tackle Football & Cheer-Pizza Party Thursday (8/24)

Berlin Tackle Football and Cheer Players and Parents,

On Thursday, August 24th at 7:45pm (after practice) our Platinum Sponsor, Adam Cohen of Cohen Family Orthodontics will be sponsoring a pizza party outside of the Sage Park field house for all of our hard working players and cheerleaders who have been working hard and making fantastic progress keeping the Berlin Bears Football & Cheer spirit going strong.

All players, cheerleaders, and parents are invited. Pizza, ice cream and beverages will be provided.

Thanks to Cohen Family Orthodontics - and we look forward to all of your attendance!

 


by berlinbears posted 08/20/2017
Cheer Coaches Needed - HELP !

Calling All Bears - Cheer Teams need your help! 

To have a successful Cheer season, we are STILL in need of volunteer Cheer for A and D Teams. 

If you, or anyone you may know would be interested in helping out our girls this coming season - please contact Crystal (crystalaresim@comcast.net) or Shelly (petersont1961@gmail.com).

Thanks for considering and for passing the word along!

Go Berlin! 


by posted 08/10/2017
Reminder - Tackle Practice starts Tues 8/1 @6pm

A reminder to all Berlin Bear Families:

Tackle Football practice begins Tuesday, 8/1 from 6-8pm at Sage Park.

We have also posted the blast email sent by Ben Murphy President of BYFC a couple weeks ago which includes a helpful Q&A. 

******

Good Evening!

Thank you all for registering your child for Berlin Youth Football & Cheer – I truly hope you’re as excited as I am for the commencement of our season next Tuesday, August 1st.  Several board members and parents have reached out with some inquires about equipment, hours of practice/games, coaches etc so here’s a brief response to some frequently asked questions:

Q:  What should I purchase for equipment and what does the league provide?

  • BYFC provides a helmet, shoulder pads, (1) game jersey, (1) practice jersey, (1) pair of practice pants and (1) pair of game pants plus thigh/knee pads, belt, girdle and girdle pads.  You should purchase your player a pair of cleats, mouth guard, protective cup, water bottle with his/her name & I highly recommend padded girdle/pants and matching padded rib/shoulder shirts which are worn underneath the uniforms (this makes laundry MUCH easier).  A 20% off DICKS Sporting Goods coupon was sent out which expires TOMORROW so that’s a great purchasing option.

Q.   How does the practice schedule work?

  • For the month of August practice(s) take place for A, B, C, D teams from 600pm – 800pm on Monday through Thursday.  When school begins, the head coaches will determine (based on after school activities, CCD etc) which schedule works best for their team collectively.  Traditionally practices go Mon/Weds 6-8pm, Sat morning 8-9am and Sunday games OR Tues/Thurs 6-8pm, Sat morning 8-9am and Sunday games.  Again, this will be determined by the head coaches as the practice season proceeds.

Q. Where do we regulary practice?

  • The vast majority of the season we will practice at Sage Field – at either the football field or on either of the two softball fields.  Occasionally on Saturdays we get bumped to BHS but those notifications will be made in advance.  Our youth program gets the field after BHS Sports and Band activities.

Q.   When do the individual teams play games on Sunday?

  • B Team, 9:00am; A Team 11:00am; C Team 1:00 pm & D Team 300pm.  Coaches generally ask their players to be at the field an hour and fifteen minutes early for warm ups and weigh ins. 

Q.   Who are the head coaches?

  • A Team – Kevin Sparks.  B Team – Fred Jortner.  C Team – Ben Murphy & D Team – Ryan Kelly.  All of our coaches email addresses and contact numbers can be found on our league website if by some chance you haven’t been able to contact them by now.

Q.   When’s the dead line to sign up to coach or register another player?

  • There isn’t a deadline but it’s HIGHLY recommended that it get done ASAP.  All those interested in coaching need to compete a coaching application which can be found on our league website.

Q.  What needs to be brought in on August 1st and at what time?

  • ALL pertinent paperwork especially medical waivers and parent/player contracts.  Without all required paperwork a player will NOT be allowed on the field.  I am not flexible on this at all so please get it done beforehand.  Come at 530 for opening day, board members will be on hand to help with necessary paperwork and answer questions.  Your player should be dressed in workout gear along w/ cleats and a water bottle.  We progress into contact based on standards set by USA Football.

Q.  What team will my child be on?

  • If you refer again to the webpage it lists all ages/weights where your child MAY be placed.  However, we will be weighing in players on Day 1.  In the event we have a player on the bubble for weight and/or eligible to “play down” we will address this personally with the parents. “Playing down” means that your child meets the weight requirement to stay on a lower level due to their size.  This is a conversation that generally includes the head coach, parents and player. 

Q.   What is “minimum plays”

  • Per CTYFL rules all players who dress for a game shall play at minimum 6 plays per game.  This goes hand in hand with “playing down” as football being a contact sport, it’s usually in the best interest for player safety to play down and get more playing time.  

Q.  Where can I stand to watch my player practice?

  • Outside of the fence.  We’ve had parents wanting to video tape every move of their child and I understand, it may be something new but it’s a liability factor for the league.  That said, no children, pets or parents on the field

Q.  What does “toes on the line at 6” mean?

  • I’ve had numerous people inquire about this – This is a standard for BYFC.  We start at 600pm, players meandering onto the field late without a plausible explanation isn’t acceptable.  We have our kids suited up, laced up and ready to warm up at 600 SHARP daily.  In the event you cannot get your player here try to make arrangements with the other parents or coach(es)….I’ve picked up/dropped off players quite a bit as have other coaches.  This helps us operate more efficiently and stay on track as 2 hours of practice often flies by.  This is also spelled out in the parent/player contract.

Q.   What’s the scoop with the parent/player contract?

  • Your player’s head coach will go into this in more depth when they conduct a parents meeting but essentially it’s our discipline standard.  It will explain rules and expectations for the players and is enforced universally throughout the league.  This means being on time, acting appropriately ON AND OFF the field, being a good player/sportsman amongst other things.  This contract alleviates the coaches from having to be “the bad guy” in the event there’s a discipline or performance issue related to the player. 

Q.  What’s the stance on off-field conduct?

  • It’s simple, your child/player is constantly a representative of our league.  If their tarnish, bring negative attention or disparage our league they will be held accountable.  We’ve worked very hard to maintain a professional, respectful and successful league and it will be kept as such.  Wearing a Berlin uniform is a PRIVILEGE, not a right.  Related to this topic is BULLYING.  If there’s any form of this act taking place by a player they are essentially put on notice and will be dealt with accordingly by his/her coach.  If it continues the child/player will be separated from the team - Such behavior will not be tolerated in Berlin Football.

We want to welcome your player into our FAMILY which is our league philosophy, not a buzz word we use or initiative we started up.  As coaches we take your kids and make them OURS for the entire season – We need your assistance on and off the field to reinforce responsibility, good sportsmanship, hard work and discipline.

If there’s anything I missed I’d be more than happy to field a phone call, return a text or email.

Get ready because it’s almost go time!

100% BERLIN

Respectfully,

Ben Murphy – BYFC President 


by berlinbears posted 07/31/2017
BYFC - Online Store is OPEN!

GREAT NEWS

BERLIN YOUTH FOOTBALL CHEER

Players, Families and Supporters!

 This year not only will you be able to purchase some great items at the fields, but we are offering a chance to purchase additional items and sizes through our

Online Store

No need to run to the local sporting goods store searching for that color or size - order online here. Some great items at great prices and Support your local Berlin Athlete!

SHOW YOUR BERLIN PRIDE!!!

This store was created for Berlin Youth Football and Cheer, but is for all BYFC participants and supporters! Don't miss out on this great opportunity - the Online Store will be open through October.  

(Items being shipped weekly or bi-weekly depending on demand.) 

 

Big Thanks to Bob Sisti, Merchandise Director for getting the store up and running!

 


by posted 07/28/2017
100% Berlin - Message from our President

Why Berlin Youth Football & Cheer:

There’s a reason why men speak of their Berlin football playing days with such passion, exuberance and affection.  There’s a reason why women who’ve cheered for Berlin can name exactly who was on their squad, in 3rd grade, 20 years later.  It’s FAMILY, plain and simple.  In this league it’s the impetus of everything we say, coach and demonstrate – on and off the field.  In football every athlete on that field plays an integral part of the game, from the quarterback to the linemen in the trenches.  In cheerleading every girl relies on one and another to move in symmetry, ensure each other’s safety while performing stunts/flips/handsprings all to energize the crowd and support their team.

My name’s Ben Murphy, 37 year town resident and newly elected president of the Berlin Youth Football and Cheer league.  I elected to write an editorial to introduce myself, our board and the number of positives changes we’ve made to BYFC over the last year.  I had the privilege of wearing a Berlin football uniform for 11 years.   From 1987 to 1998 (7yrs old to 18 yrs old) I got to play the greatest sport on earth for many Fathers of my classmates.  We started on Willard’s field back when I was in second grade, equipment was shoddy at best and the league was in its infancy stage.  We eventually made our way over to Sage for practices but the nice turf field was not in the stars for us, more like mud pit practices in the softball fields – I truly miss those days.

 Many of my first year teammates went on to play with me all the way through our senior year at BHS – all four co-captains (myself included) were Berlin Bears at very young ages.  It encourages me now that many of my teammates, who I’ve never really lost contact with, are starting to show up at Sage on Saturday mornings with their sons ready to sign up for flag and/or tackle football.  It doesn’t surprise me though as our wonderful town has a way of drawing people back to it…whether it’s the still semi-quaint surroundings, school system, fair or Berlin Football – Most make their way back to B-Town.

Our board consists of a lot of former football players and cheerleaders.  They volunteer their time to organize registrations, ensure safety precautions are followed and equipment is maintained to facilitate a safe and positive environment for our boys and girls.  They meet monthly to keep abreast of any pertinent issues and to exchange ideas on how to improve the league.  Most board members are also coaches/head coaches who devote countless hours towards the league pouring their blood, sweat and tears into our young up and comers.  It’s truly a labor of love. 

Personally speaking, I went from anticipating holding a bag to being a head coach my first year.  Without question one of the biggest joys of my life is watching young players learn to work as a team.  Win with honor, lose with dignity and foster relationships that I hope continue for them decades beyond their playing days.  As they say, “you can learn more character on the two yard line than anywhere else in life”.  Football teaches life lessons and it begins with the commitment to your teammates, your coaches and organization.  We constantly preach that wearing a Berlin football jersey is a privilege, not a right, and it should be treated as such.  Improper acts, actions that bring disparity to our team/league or unethical behavior result in a player receiving their walking papers – It is not tolerated.  We have parent/player contracts which are strictly adhered to.  We expect our players to set the example and be leaders on the field and in the community. 

We foster positive relationships with the BHS Football staff and many of their coaches regularly attend our practices to assist with our kiddos and instruct drills/techniques.  This helps with the subsequent transition from youth to high school football.  Our HS players also run and facilitate the majority of our flag program – The little guys (and GIRLS) love the older kids and to their credit, the high school players do a terrific job with the kids. 

All of our coaching staff is USA Football “Heads Up” certified – I encourage any interested parent to register with USA Football to learn about our safety protocols, emergency plans (each coach has one), coaching techniques and general questions. Many of our coaches are CPR, MRT or EMT certified with defibulators on standby as safety precautions (this is not a mandate but an extra step we take).  BYFC held a “Parents Clinic” this year to answer any questions from interested parents.  Our league website and Facebook page has direct links to contact myself or other coaches with questions which we check daily.

BYFC purchases top notch equipment for our players – We just spent over $6,000 on helmet reconditioning to adhere to manufactures’ requirements for safety and warrantees.  We adhere to an age/weight guideline for players which assign them to teams with players close to their age.  As coaches, we position players based on size, ability and intelligence – but overall, kids get an opportunity to play ALL positions when they first arrive.  A player’s limitations are only diminished by their effort.

We set up an online registration option which makes signing up a breeze.  Most forms and information can be found on www.Berlinbears.com.  Older players are mandated to produce report cards prior to the beginning of the season, as important as football is education takes precedence.  This philosophy is taught from Day 1.

We currently have an advertising/fundraising opportunity available.  What better way to promote ones business and support a youth program then to display a banner at Sage Park during our home football games?  All pertinent information can be found on the aforementioned website.  It’s a reasonable $300 for a 4x6 banner – Details online.

Last year, what we’re most proud of, our league opened the season on September 11th.  We invited members of the Berlin Police Department, Fire Department, Hunters Ambulance, VFW and Mayor Kaczynski to Sage Park.  We had a local student honor our country, soldiers and first responders by singing our National Anthem – Respect, Honor and Appreciation – That’s what we stand for.  Anticipate that an opening ceremony again this year.

I encourage all parents, students, athletes and interested town folks to look into our league.  We’ve made HUGE advancements since 1987.  I love this town, this league and most importantly the 20 plus sons I inherit from August through November.  Seeing my boy in a Berlin jersey every fall never ceases to keep me from beaming with joy – We’d love to welcome you to our family. 100%BERLIN

Respectfully,

Ben Murphy

BYFC President


by berlinbears posted 06/04/2017
Calling all Businesses - Sponsor Opportunity!

BYFC has proudly teamed with Image Ink in offering a Sponsor package opportunity.

For a donation of $300 a business will receive:

  • 4x6 banner to be hung all home BYFL games
  • 1/4 page ad in the BYFL League Ad Book
  • Posting and (if applicable) link to your business on BYFL Facebook and BYFL Webpage
  • Announcement of your business and support for BYF during halftime(s) at home games.

Please email Ben Murphy (tobp332@gmail.com) if interested. Thanks for your support! 100%BERLIN


by berlinbears posted 03/01/2017
Welcome to Bears Football!

Welcome to the home of the Berlin Bears!  Watch this spot for info throughout the year on Berlin Football and Cheerleading.


by posted 01/25/2017
Useful Links

USA Football

NFHS Website

AACCA Cheerleading Safety Education

Omni Cheer