Published in the June 20, 2018 edition
By DAN TOMASELLO
LYNNFIELD — Lynnfield Pioneer Youth Football and Cheer’s registration numbers for the upcoming season are very strong, LPYFC Communications Director Rebecca Drzewiczewski said in an email sent to the Villager.
LPYFC was formed last fall by a group of parents who became frustrated that Lynnfield Youth Football and Cheerleading (LYFC) would not expand its board of directors. The Attorney General’s office has been investigating the financial records of LYFC. The AG’s office has not issued a report on the allegations.
Drzewiczewski said registration for the inaugural season has been going very well.
“Registration numbers are very strong and continue to grow,” said Drzewiczewski. “We have exceeded the number of cheer registrations from last season and football numbers are on target to meet or exceed last year’s registrations as well. Cape Ann roster requirements have been met for all age levels, which means that Lynnfield Pioneer YFC has been recognized as a viable organization within the league. For anyone who hasn’t yet registered, but is interested in doing so, online registration will remain open until June 30 and can accessed at https://www.lynnfieldpioneeryfc.com/.”
As part of an effort to get the new youth sports organization ready for the upcoming season, Drzewiczewski said LPYFC has launched an extensive fundraising campaign in order to purchase football equipment for the fall season.
“The generosity of the Lynnfield community has been incredible,” said Drzewiczewski. “To date, Lynnfield Pioneer YFC has raised over $18,000 in personal and corporate donations. We are continuing to pursue corporate sponsorships and apply for grants. Most recently, we received a grant from USA Football for $1,500, which we applied toward the purchase of new football helmets from Riddell.”
While Drzewiczewski said personal donations “exceeded our expectations,” she said LPYFC is looking for more corporate sponsorship opportunities.
“As an approved 501c(3) charity, we’d love to work with some of Lynnfield’s great businesses on sponsorship opportunities and we’ve crafted a number of different ways that organizations can contribute,” said Drzewiczewski. “Anyone that would like to talk to us about a sponsorship for the 2018 season can visit our page at https://www.lynnfieldpioneeryfc.com/sponsorship/.”
As part of an effort to purchase equipment, Drzewiczewski said LPYFC held football equipment-fitting nights at Lynnfield High School’s snack shack last month.
“These fittings were used to size every child with every piece of equipment that we are going to purchase,” said Drzewiczewski. “This way we did not have to estimate quantities and waste valuable time or money scrambling later to obtain and fit equipment. The support that our parents showed for this effort was simply amazing. With over 100 participants who will need new equipment, all but three registered players showed up to one of the two nights.”
Drzewiczewski also said LPYFC held two separate equipment vendor nights with three equipment manufacturers.
“We had board members, coaches from each team, and a representative sampling of kids in to get a hands-on feel of the best equipment available to youth football players,” said Drzewiczewski. “We then compiled their feedback and did further investigating to determine that we were most comfortable selecting Riddell as our supplier for Lynnfield Pioneer YFC’s upcoming inaugural season in CAYFL (Cape Ann Youth Football League).”
Drzewiczewski said the new youth football organization has been forced to purchase new equipment because “LYFC has not granted us access to any of the football equipment.”
“We were able to communicate with LYFC President Wayne Shaffer, who granted Lynnfield Pioneer YFC use of the cheer uniforms for the upcoming season, but for reasons unknown, neither he nor the LYFC board has agreed to the same regarding the football equipment, which represents the bulk of our operating costs in the first year,” said Drzewiczewski. “At this point, we must move forward with procuring football equipment to ensure it arrives in time for the start of the season in August.”
Drzewiczewski said LPYFC has purchased new football helmets, shoulder pads and pants for the new league, totaling $34,000. She said the organization needs to purchase $40,000 worth of football equipment.
While Drzewiczewski said LPYFC “can’t comment on the viability of LYFC,” she said “the LYFC website is no longer active.” She said “CAYFL has recognized Lynnfield Pioneer YFC in its organization, while not formally eliminating LYFC.”
“Ultimately, when official team rosters are due to CAYFL prior to the start of the season, the organization that provides football teams and coaches into the fall season will be officially ruled as the program represented within,” said Drzewiczewski. “With the registration numbers we currently have, the number of committed coaches, and the permits for field use within Lynnfield, we believe that Lynnfield Pioneer YFC is the only program available.”