I want the city of Dunkirk taxpayers to know what the administration of the Dunkirk High School is doing to the children of our city. This year, after several years of not charging us, the administration has decided to charge the Dunkirk Midget Football League a fee for using the football field at DHS.
This charge is supposedly to cover overtime costs for a maintenance person who will be present at our games and the lights. Also they are requiring us to stay and clean the field. We have no problem with that but who cleans them after the high school game - no one.
The cost to the league will be almost $400 per game day which is a lot considering we have never paid before and have not budgeted for that unexpected cost. Our parents and coaches firmly believe that the league is being persecuted for starting a modified football team this year to compete within the Jamestown Football League.
Apparently the Dunkirk School system does not have enough children now to form their modified football team which has in the past been a competitor to our league. The children and parents had a choice and they chose the Dunkirk Midget Football League. Why you may ask? The children want to play and they get a chance with the Dunkirk Midget Football League.
Our Varsity team brought home a championship last year. They were undefeated. The trophy is proudly displayed in the school. This should make our city and school system proud. Just wondering did we receive a fee from Fredonia when they played football on our field last year?
I am speaking for all the parents of the children participating in this league. They cannot comprehend how we as taxpayers now have to pay to use something that is ours and for our children. These children attend school in Dunkirk and have a right to use that field.
I am a strong believer in the Dunkirk Midget Football program, I had three boys, now ages 27, 22, and 18 that played for the league. Yes they learned football but most of all they learned respect, discipline, and teamwork. Now my daughter, who is 11, is a cheerleader and the program still delivers these values to our children. Our children, who are the future of this community.
How many times have you heard the children should be off the streets, well guess what? This is what that program does. It provides our children a healthy and safe environment to play football, cheer and learn valuable life lessons.
In closing, as the cheerleaders would say, "Take that fee away, hey, take that fee away, hey hey!"
Gail Dudzic is a Dunkirk resident.