In the USA, high school football season is an exciting time for students. For players, preparation often begins weeks before the start of school. Practices start early in the morning and often for several days in a row. Football players prepare themselves for at least 10 games, usually one each week from the beginning of school until Thanksgiving. Some lucky teams will get to continue playing in the playoff season and championship games.
The high school football season also gives the whole campus a sense of school spirit. School colors are often seen in the hallways and on student’s clothing. Pep rallies led by the cheerleading squad with participation by the football team, band and other student groups are often a highlight of the week. Kids love getting time off from class to go to the pep rally!
The football season can give the entire community a sense of pride in their town. People from all over the area meet in the stands to support the team. Parents, grandparents, aunts and siblings cheer for their family playing on the team. Alumni come back to see how the school is doing and meet with old classmates. The stadium can provide a focal point for the community for those few months of the year.
With facilities costs, equipment and travel to out of town games, providing a quality football program for a high school can be really expensive. To pay for these costs some schools have money in the district budget for some things like facility upkeep, but a lot of the cost has to be shouldered by parents. To take care of these expenses and support the kids, most schools have a football boosters club. Sometimes there’s just one booster club for all athletics. These groups of parents, teachers and community members meet regularly to plan ways to support the team.
Booster clubs find a variety of ways to raise money to sustain the football season. Concessions are often one of the most popular ways to raise funds, especially with dads who like to barbecue! They might sell food at the games and/or at community events. There’s also football merchandise like stadium seats and t-shirts that they can sell. Booster clubs can often be really creative when it comes to raising money for their team.
Contests at games can be one of the most exciting ways to raise additional money. Attendees can participate in contests like football toss or a dunking booth before the game. Sometimes contests are held at halftime and participants are chosen at random from tickets given to fans at the gate. This can be a way to raise attendance for games during the season that are usually lower in attendance.