By Stacy Case. Photos courtesy of www.Autumnandmelinda.com
Parkland Recreational Lacrosse League players have taken to the field once again this year, and it may come as no surprise that both boys and girls from the Under 8 to the Under 14 age divisions keep the program going strong. (Under 10 and Under 12 are also available)
After its inception in 2004, the RedHawks have been the second home for many Parkland youths who have an interest in playing lacrosse.
And this year, the RedHawks got the unique opportunity to be hospitable to the neighboring Coral Springs lax players, as that city’s recreational program did not have full enrollment in its respective age groups, so those players were invited to participate as RedHawks for the 2018 season. It was apparently a win-win situation for both programs and players.
But regardless of geography, the sport of lacrosse yields some rather distinct benefits to those who ‘suit up’ to play what has been affectionately known as ‘the fastest game on two feet’.
“Lacrosse is such a great sport for several reasons; mostly, it combines both individual and team aspects all into one game and that’s important for these kids to see.” says Rob Windesheim, who is in his fourth year as the RedHawks president, and enters his sixth year on the 11-member Board of Directors. “These are some things that kids will notice once they’re older and get into a business environment.”
Parkland Lacrosse began its 2018 games when pre-season practices got underway in January, in which games will conclude in the early part of May. But recreational lacrosse is not just a
5-month season for the RedHawks, as Rob and his Board are busy at work throughout the year planning for each upcoming season.
In fact, sometime this summer, they will once again host a pre-season clinic for those who have never played lacrosse but have an interest in it and would like to test it out.
That being said, Rob welcomes those of all lacrosse abilities to participate in Parkland, as they play home games at Pine Trails Park throughout the season. But when they are not home, they represent the RedHawks against teams from as far away as Jupiter, Martin County, Boca and Delray, along with teams down in Miami, Weston, Davie and Plantation (just to name a few).
“There’s a great social aspect with lacrosse too and it can be played by those with varying abilities,” adds Rob, complimenting his 300 youths who have donned their RedHawks uniforms this season. “It can provide a lot of fun for a broad spectrum to those within the (lacrosse) community.”
And despite how demonizing the protective gear may appear to some, Rob says it really isn’t a sport that incorporates a violent element, and the RedHawks, under the auspices of the South Florida Youth Lacrosse League, keep up with safety measures for all players.
“Yes, they do bump each other sometimes, but we do our best to prevent that,” Rob says. “It’s not typically a sport where players get severe injuries, especially concussions, where they may be more prevalent in some other sports. It IS a fun, fast-paced sport, and can really be enjoyed at any age.”
For more info on the Parkland Recreational Lacrosse League, visit parklandlacrosse.com