Last weekend the North Lake Tahoe Pop Warner Rams finished their regular-season home game schedule hosting the Douglas Tigers’ Junior Pee Wee and Junior Midget football teams.
NLTPW President Scott Wilderman complimented the Rams organization: “It’s a privilege to serve in my capacity. This has been a fun and exciting season so far. NLT home games are a great experience for the kids and families. We sing the National Anthem, and everyone, including referees and visiting teams, thanks me for the total experience NLTPW provides.”
NLTPW cheer director Heather Baker, Incline Middle School’s Kayla Smothers, the Rams cheerleaders and Junior Midget football player Ricky Tinoco all took turns gracing the rarified air in North Tahoe with their stellar voices this season.
“All I can do is pass on the thanks to the volunteers and community members who understand that when you live in a tourist town, you depend on visitors for your very livelihood,” Wilderman said. “North Tahoe High School staff and student volunteers including Brandon Olk, Simon Wyss, TJ Cornwell and Garret Dixon made big contributions toward the great shows we put on this season.
“Hosting the Douglas Tigers for our final home games was everything I could have asked for. Douglas is a quality organization. Their kids are great sportsmen, their coaches are great leaders, and they have as supportive a group of parents as you could find anywhere.”
Overshadowing the Rams final home events was an important deadline for Pop Warner Little Scholars across the country this past week when Scholastic All-American Applications for 2013 became due.
NLTPW Scholastics Director Bridget Cornell summarized an important difference between Pop Warner and other youth football programs: “While many youth sports programs require minimum academic achievement from their participants, Pop Warner is the only national youth football program that also recognizes academic excellence. It’s no surprise to me that with a proper reward system in place, Pop Warner participants’ grades improve.
“Because football and cheer are highly demanding physically, emotionally and intellectually, some people think it becomes a drain on kids’ academic achievement. We have the statistics to prove the opposite. We’ve seen our participants’ grades go up, and in the five years I’ve been involved with the NLTPW program, the number of Pop Warner All American Scholars has always grown.”
Added Wilderman: “I’ve seen kids play harder on the field when they face adversity, and I’ve seen them perform better in the classroom when they are challenged. The best tool for achieving both results is a positive reward system. The Pop Warner Scholastic All-American Program does that. I am extremely excited and proud to announce that this year, NLTPW has more Scholastic All Americans than ever.”
Only children who achieve grades in the 90-plus percentile are considered for Pop Warner Academic All-American recognition. Fully 50 percent of NLTPW program participants are eligible for Regional and National recognition this year.
“This is an outstanding accomplishment on the part of the kids and their parents,” Wilderman said.
For more information about the Rams and the Pop Warner Scholastic All-American Program, go to www.northtahoepopwarner.com.