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June 10, 2012Thanks in large part to an overwhelming response and outstanding feedback from parents, the Legends of Iowa Football Camp returns for their second year. The camp, which served 630 youth from all across the country, will held July 5-7 at Bettendorf High School.
Former Hawkeye and camp organizer Matt Hughes is excited about what the camp will offer in its second year of operation.
"We got a lot of positive feedback last year," he said. "I couldn't tell you how many e-mails we received from parents who said that they enjoyed the focus of the camp on life skills and the teaching their child received at the camp. We had kids from all over the country and the feedback was phenomenal."
The camp actually started with the help of a group called the Iowa Football Club, which is an organization founded by former Iowa players who wanted to stay in touch with each other after their playing days.
"The camp was really a part of the growth of our Iowa Football Club, that was formed to continue friendships that were made at the University of Iowa and also to offer networking opportunities for former Hawkeye players," Hughes said. "We want to add to that and the camp was a natural outgrowth of that gives us the opportunity to help the Iowa community and also teach kids the right way to play the game of football."
The camp is broken into two parts, the first being a one day camp held on July 5th from 1 pm to 4:30 pm at Bettendorf High School. The one day camp offers an introductory experience to the game of football for kids 1st thru 5th grade.
"We are going to do some drills and it's a real basic camp setting," he said. "It's a young group, so we play a lot of fun games and the coaches really get involved in those games and the total experience. We will also have a life lessons sessions where we have a speaker talk to the kids about character development, winning and losing with class, and overcoming obstacles in their life."
The second camp is geared towards kids grades 6-12 and will take place over two days, July 6th and 7th. It will be a full day camp, running from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and includes lunch.
"That is a lot more intense. It's a lot more drills and fundamentals. The coaches really do a lot of teaching in the drills and talk about what made them successful at the college level. There is also a heavy emphasis on teaching life lessons."
This year the camp will also add a legendary former Hawkeye to its coaching roster as Chuck Long will be on hand to teach the quarterback position and offer instruction.
"It is a real big deal and it shows the commitment and love that the former players have for the University of Iowa and the teammates they played with. It only took one phone call to Chuck and he was completely on board with being a part of it, Hughes said.
Joining Long and Hughes this year will be former Hawks Pat Angerer and Tim Dwight with a few more NFL players potentially being added to the coaching staff before the July camp begins.
The camp will also include an opportunity for fans who do not have a child participating to spend time with some of the Legends of Iowa Football with a Legends Bash on Friday, July 6th at the Isle Casino Hotel in Bettendorf.
Tickets for the event are only $40 in advance and $50 at the door and will include drinks and a tailgate style dinner. All of the camp coaches will be in attendance and there will be a one of a kid silent auction with many Iowa related items.
The camp and the bash will donate 100% of the proceeds to charity. Some of the charities benefiting this year include the Brett Greenwood Foundation and the Children's Therapy Center of the Quad Cities.
"It's our one and only fundraiser for the football club and all the proceeds go to charity. We are trying to make a difference in the lives of the kids and the charities that we support," Hughes said. "All of the coaches volunteer their time for this and they feel very strongly about helping kids learn the game of football and they want to make an impact in the community."
Link: Sign up for the Legends of Iowa Football Camp