The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club, NYC’s fastest growing lacrosse organization, is looking for a few good coaches for its Summer 2013 Program and beyond.
The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club was founded in 2012, and has rocketed to over 225 kids on 9 teams this Spring. Our Summer program, hosted over 7 Sunday in July and August, currently has over 3,000 registrations with 2 months left to sign up.. Programs are offered to boys and girls, from Pre-K through 12th grade.
The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club is NYC’s only lacrosse organization that counts national Champions (Division 1 and 2), Hall-of-Famers and former Professional players among it ranks. Playing experience is important, but more important is the love for the game and the desire to introduce the sport to the youth of Brooklyn.
The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club will be hosting 2 Open Houses for prospective coaches:
Saturday, May 18th at 4pm at Pier 5 of the Brooklyn Bridge Park.(Field 3)
Sunday, June 30th at 9am at Pier 5 of the Brooklyn Bridge Park.(Field 3)
All coaches accepted into our program will be eligible to take The US Lacrosse Coach Training Program as well as CPR/medical training, all paid for by the Brooklyn Lacrosse Club.
Our Mission is to bring the sport of Lacrosse to the youth of Brooklyn, emphasizing Fundamentals, Teamwork, Respect and Brooklyn. The essence of our organization is the belief that Lacrosse should be made accessible to all children, despite the various barriers of entry that exist in urban areas; such as cost, perception, and logistics.
Brooklyn Lacrosse, NYC’s fastest growing lacrosse club, has announced it free summer sessions, coupled with the news that they are now offering a High School aged team for boys and girls.
Brooklyn Lacrosse was formed in 2012 as an idea about bringing Lacrosse to Brooklyn, and has quickly grown to a Spring Session with over 200 boys and girls and 40 coaches during its first season.
Brooklyn Lacrosse Free Summer Sessions will take place on Sunday morning’s (exact schedule available June 1) in July and August at Pier 5 in Brooklyn Bridge Park (Register Here). It will be an extension of its current Spring format, offering separate teams for boys and girls at the 1/2 Grade, 3/4 Grade. 5/6 Grade and 7/8 Grade, as well as new boys and girls teams from Grades 9-12. Brooklyn Lacrosse also offers a co-ed “Pee Wee” session for kids in Pre-K and Kindergarten. They also will offer free clinic sessions with top collegiate coaches, and will announce those session shortly.
“This Summer is going to be a Lacrosse Jamboree at Pier 5”, explained Joe Nocella (Co-Founder and Director). “We will have basic clinics, open play, training session, and a wide range of age groups. We are planning it like a summer concert series, with offerings for everybody.”
“We are keeping our entire Summer free to encourage new players and parents to try this sport out, and because it’s a way to give back to the community that has given us so much. We are not doing this for money or ego, we are simply doing this because we love lacrosse and believe the youth of brooklyn can benefit greatly from it. When you remember that this whole thing is about kids playing lacrosse, every decision this organization makes is quite simple.”
In addition to its current offerings, Brooklyn Lacrosse has decided to launch Brooklyn’s first High School aged club team, for both boys and girls.
“Turning these kids away after 8th grade just didn't feel like we were providing enough opportunities for these kids”, explained Nocella. “The argument can be made that kids need access to athletic teams during their high school years more than any other age.
“We have had great buy-in from local middle school clubs as well as high school clubs, many of which will be sending its players down to Brooklyn Lacrosse’s free sessions this summer. We want to be a program that serves children from Age 4 to 18. It’s a tall task, but when you love a sport as much as we do, it’s just a natural extension”
Lacrosse’s deepest history dates back to the Native Americans of the 1100’s, and was being documented by European settlers by the 1700’s. In the 1870’s Canadian immigrants established clubs in the NYC area, with 4 teams regularly squaring off in the late 1870’s (Ravenswood, NYU, NY Lacrosse Club and Prospect Park). (1)
In an effort to connect with the Victorian image of the "noble savage", affluent members of Brooklyn Society began taking up lacrosse in the 1870's. In a short time, with the rise of many local
Athletic Clubs, modern Lacrosse found its epicenter in Brooklyn. The New York Times reported that the 1885 season saw some 35 lacrosse games at Brooklyn’s Parade Grounds alone. By 1885 there were
12 teams in NYC, with clubs from Brooklyn dominating the Lacrosse world well into the 1920’s.
Unlike baseball, Lacrosse in America wasn’t grounded in working-class society. Throughout the 20th Century, Lacrosse became the property of the social elite and well-educated. The last few decades had seen a reemergence of the sport in all parts of the country. However, this growth has encountered hurdles in urban areas. Barriers such as cost, field space, perception and logistics have stood in the way of Lacrosse flourishing in the inner cities.The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club has emerged with the mission of removing these barriers. One of the biggest pieces of this puzzle was finding a home that supported this vision.
The termination of Old Fulton Street was the site of the original ferry linking Brooklyn to Manhattan in 1642. By the time of the American Revolution, the area around the ferry landing had been developed as a busy marketplace with industries such as slaughterhouses, breweries, and businesses such as shops, inns and taverns.
The construction of the Brooklyn Bridge in 1883 was a significant engineering feat and served as the first physical link between the independent cities of Brooklyn and New York. The site of Brooklyn Bridge Park was a thriving public waterfront through the first half of the 20th Century. However, in the 1950's, shipping in the area began a steady decline in use as New York's older port areas lost ground to container shipping and to competition from other east coast cities. (2)
“When we were planning Brooklyn Bridge Park [BBP], people kept telling us how much they wanted to be able to touch the water,” says BBP’s designer, landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh, recalling the hundreds of community meetings he attended in the making of this park. Simple as that request may seem, it reflects the complicated saga of our cities and their rivers. Specifically, the tale of this narrow, irregular 1.3-mile-long stretch of waterfront in Brooklyn, New York, and its barriers to neighborhood enjoyment. Though they live surrounded by water, most New Yorkers have never touched the City’s East or Hudson Rivers. Like many American cities, New York long severed much of daily life, particularly leisure activity, from direct engagement with its waterways. Visitors to urban riverside parks have historically been sequestered in scenic overlooks or railed-in promenades. (3)
Today, the Brooklyn Bridge Waterfront stands ready to serve the people of Brooklyn again. Born as a ferry terminus, spending much of its life as a shipping destination, the waterfront is now poised to give Brooklyn access to nature and a more active lifestyle.
Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 5 Field Image Gallery
Access to this amazing stretch of public parkland was exactly what the Brooklyn Lacrosse Club was looking for when in search of its new home. This spot offers Brooklyn Lacrosse the chance to remove the barriers of entry that lacrosse faces in urban areas:
- Cost - Free permitting for youth groups allows for reduced program cost
- Field space - Beautifully maintained, with amenities for the whole family
- Perception- Playing in public park creates an inviting and accessible environment
- Logistics - Within walking distance of many modes of Mass Transit, at what truly is the epicenter of New York City
We hope that you have a chance to take a look at a revitalized sport in a rejuvenated part of Brooklyn. Practices start on the weekend of March 2nd/3rd. For more information, please go to our website at www.brooklynlacrosse.org.
(1) "Lacrosse: A History of the Game", By Donald M. Fisher
(2) Brooklyn Bridge Park website http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/the-park/site-history
(3) “Brooklyn Bridge Park”, Jan 01, 2011 / Sarah Amelar / Architectural Record
One of the main “Barriers to Entry” for any new lacrosse player is cost. Registration fees can climb into the hundreds of dollars...and then there’s players equipment. At Brooklyn Lacrosse, we looked very closely at what the costs were for each player we welcome into our organization. The following items contribute to the “cost” of a player in most sports organizations:
- US Lacrosse Membership
- Tournament Entry Fees
- Referee Fees
- Field Equipment
- Medical Equipment
- Coaching Staff
- Field Permit Fees
- Event Costs
- Weekly practice session with the best coaches in NYC from March through June.
- Practice is at the most centrally located and amazing lacrosse facility in NYC.
- Optional/secondary sessions on Saturdays.
- Optional/secondary weekday sessions.
- US Lacrosse membership (with Insurance)
- Full schedule of games and tournaments.
- Game jersey and game shorts.
- Brooklyn Lacrosse T-Shirt.
Further easing the financial risk in getting involved with a new sport are our Free February Clinics. This program allows prospective players and parents to test the waters before our season outdoor practice opener on March 2 and 3.
We have also been the recipient of a few major donations. These gifts have allowed us to gain a solid fiscal footing, that allows us to ease the financial burden on our program members.
In the end, The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club is truly about bringing the sport of Lacrosse to Brooklyn, and that’s it. Its not about turning a profit, and it’s not about individual power or ego. When you keep that singular vision firmly in place, all decisions about money and power and ego are really easy ones to make.
The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club is set to launch their Spring 2013 Season with 3 free indoor clinics on February 9th, 16th and 23rd from 12-4 at PS 10 In Brooklyn. The idea here is a simple one; to
introduce Brooklyn kids to “The Fastest Sport on 2 Feet” in a safe and fun environment.
“This sport has spread like wildfire throughout the country these last few decades, there’s no reason city kids shouldn't have access to it”, says Brooklyn Lacrosse Founder/Director Joe Nocella. “One of the hopes is that we get parents and players excited to sign up for our Spring 2013 outdoor season at the new Pier 5 Field at the Brooklyn Bridge Park. We have kept the Spring fee at $99 (price includes a uniform), which is cheaper than baseball and soccer”
Lacrosse dates back to the 1880’s in the Borough, and free clinics are a large part of Brooklyn Lacrosse’s strategy to re-introduce the sport. “Unlike other sports, this sport gives back time and time again. We have a coaching staff who have won NCAA National Championships, and who have played at lacrosse powerhouses like Syracuse, Johns Hopkins, Cornell and Towson. They still have the passion for the game, and volunteer their time simply to pass their love for Lacrosse to the next generation”.
Different time slots for different age groups of boys and girls makes the event a focused affair. First up on clinic day is the (Co-Ed, Pre-K to 2nd Grade) Pee Wee Program from 12pm-1pm. “This is a core group...when we get kids interested in the sport from a young age, the possibilities are endless”, explains Nocella. As of press time, Brooklyn Lacrosse has signed up over 50 young player for its February Clinics.
The next session is the Girls grades 3-8 from 1pm-2pm. Lacrosse has a perception issue in NYC. The few people familiar with the sport automatically associate with the boys game. However, girls lacrosse is an incredibly vibrant and popular sport throughout the United States, and is a sport with many scholarship opportunities down the road. “Our girls coaching staff is the most qualified in NYC, hands down. The passion they bring to the game is amazing,and it shows in the numbers we are drawing on the girls side”, says Nocella. An example for this passion are in the events planned for the Spring Season, including activities with the Syracuse Women's Team, The LIU Team and interactions with Team USA Players.
Boys from grades 3-8 makeup the final slot from 2pm-3pm. “The nature of our program is that we will always be welcoming in beginners to the team. These players will co-exist with players who have some experience. Despite what you might imagine, when you have players of differing abilities on the same team, the more experienced players take the new guys under their wings. Thats the kind of sport Lacrosse is”.
Nocella concludes that no player should feel embarrassed about picking up a sport that is seemingly hard to master. “We all started somewhere....we have noticed that it takes about 1-1/2 years for the initial skills to sink in. If a player and parent are willing to make that kind of commitment with us, they will be in for a lifetime of enjoyment with Lacrosse”
Brooklyn Lacrosse takes a safety first approach to the sport. Each session will have a trained CPR/AED/First Aid trained staff member, and Brooklyn Lacrosse is fully insured. These indoor clinic sessions will be without equipment and conducted with softer indoor balls. Sticks will be provided. If interested, please sign up here.
Lacrosse is a tough sell in Brooklyn. There are many obstacles standing in the way for a kid from Bedford-Stuyvesant getting into the sport, as opposed to his or her suburban counterpart.
Challenges include costs, logistics and perception. At Brooklyn Lacrosse, our main goal is to remove these “Barriers of Entry”.
Cost: Compared to many other sports, lacrosse can be expensive. Equipment and registration fees can quickly add up to a few hundred dollars.
The biggest ticket item in lacrosse is equipment (especially boys). A full set of boys equipment can cost a few hundred dollars (and wait until they grow out of it). Brooklyn Lacrosse was the winner of US Lacrosse’s National First Stick Award in August, 2012. Among other things, this grant provides Brooklyn Lacrosse with equipment that is made available to players in need. See our scholarship application for more information.
We also decided to have free clinics all throughout February, so that parents and kids can try the sport before having to dive in headfirst. See our free clinic schedule here.
At Brooklyn Lacrosse, we looked very hard at our registration fees. We then determined that a $99 registration fee would allow for us to purchase uniforms, enter tournaments, hire referees, buy equipment and have an operating budget. That’s cheaper than soccer and baseball. Once you get to the heart of what your organization is about (kids playing lacrosse), issues of money, power and ego are quickly swept away.
Logistics: There is an additional layer (or 6) to most everything we do as parents in Brooklyn. Parking, childcare, drop-offs and pick-ups. We searched long and hard for a location that is close to mass transportation and major roadways, yet also was pedestrian friendly and allowed for a lot of field level visibility from passersby. We don't have access to endless field complexes and endless parking, so we make do. We don't have a field? We (“we” being the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy) make one a pier! Our new field is the amazing Pier 5 Field at the Brooklyn Bridge Park. Accessible, picturesque, with family amenities and at the center of our urban world, this field will make quite a home for us for many years to come.
Perception: Lacrosse has the perception of being a suburban sport played in the suburbs and at leafy private schools. Suburban athletes have many advantages in terms of fields and resources. There is no reason, once barriers are removed, that we won't see Brooklyn athletes achieve the scholarships and other opportunities that this amazing sport has to offer. Lacrosse is a sport that welcomes players in, and that creates bonds that last a lifetime.
The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club (www.brooklynlacrosse.org) is Brooklyn's Premier Youth Lacrosse organization, 100% run by committed volunteers. Our mission is to bring the game of Lacrosse to boys and girls of Brooklyn, emphasizing Fundamentals, Team, Respect and Brooklyn. We are the only Lacrosse Organization in Brooklyn whose coaches have been National Champions (Div 1 and 2), Hall of Famers and Professional League Players.
“The goal is to expose kids to a sport played at top universities across the country. City kids, who do great in school and excel at lacrosse...you can’t name me a college that wouldn't be falling over themselves trying to recruit this amazingly diverse demographic”, explains founder Joe Nocella.
Lacrosse has enjoyed an uneven history in North America. Initially played centuries ago by native Americans as training for war, Victorian-era Americans took to the sport to connect with the idea of the “noble savage”. This generally took root in very affluent sporting clubs of the upper class. Throughout most of the 20th century, lacrosse retained the stigma of a sport mainly played at boarding and prep schools.
As the sport has spread across the country in the last 20 years, one of the last frontiers has been inner cities. “There are many barriers to entry for a new lacrosse player in the city. Equipment costs, field space, perception and logistics all contribute to very few active urban teams compared to their suburban counterparts” Nocella reflects.
The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club has some powerful allies in the mission to bring lacrosse to this final frontier. As a recipient of the National “First Stick” Grant from US Lacrosse. the Brooklyn Lacrosse Club is working hard to remove many barriers of entry to the sport as possible with equipment grants and financial assistance. “We have kept our registration at $99, in many cases that's even cheaper than baseball”, says Nocella.
The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club will kick off the Spring 2013 Season with 3 Free Indoor Clinics in February, and will hit the field at the new Brooklyn Bridge Park on March 2. We are tentatively set for Sunday morning practices this Spring. In addition, we have been invited to play a game at Citi Field on March 17th.
Boys and girls from Pre-k thru 8th grade are invited, and beginners are most definitely welcome. For more info, please visit www.brooklynlacrosse.org.
The Brooklyn Lacrosse Club knew it had something special on its hands before its first player ever hit the field. Founded in the Spring of 2012 by Joe Nocella and Khalid West, Brooklyn Lacrosse
took a chance and applied for US Lacrosse’s “First Stick” National Grant, a program that helps new lacrosse organizations remove as many traditional barriers of entry as possible.
With a mission of bringing the sport to Brooklyn, and emphasizing fundamentals, team, respect and Brooklyn, Brooklyn Lacrosse was awarded the First Stick grant on the eve of its inaugural Fall 2012 season.
“We were awarded First Stick based solely on our clear mission and our incredible staff”, explains Nocella. It was the clarity of purpose that allowed Brooklyn Lacrosse to have a successful Fall 2012 season. “We were successful in the number of kids we had sign up, but more importantly, we were successful in the quality of the interaction with each player. That comes from having the best coaches around”. Backing up that claim, Brooklyn Lacrosse lists a coaching roster that includes Division 1 and 2 National Champions, State High School Champions, Hall of Famers, School Record Holders, and former Professional League Players.
Before the dust settled from the Fall season, Nocella and West were planning on a huge launch of the girls lacrosse program for the Spring 2013 season. Commented Nocella, “It was important that we located coaches who were passionate about the women's game, had experience playing at the highest levels, and also understood the opportunities that abounds for girls lacrosse in Brooklyn”. Boys in Brooklyn have sports opportunities that extend well into their teens. With girls, those options aren't as plentiful. Lacrosse represents a chance to get involved with a sport that has incredible scholarship opportunities
Good news travels fast, and quickly Brooklyn Lacrosse found itself staring at a [digital] pile of resumes. The schools where these women have played read like a who’s who in lacrosse history... Hopkins, Syracuse, Towson. This is where Brooklyn Lacrosse had the good fortune to cross paths with former Syracuse lacrosse player Shari Appollon.
"After moving to Brooklyn in 2010 to be closer to my family, I was perplexed at the lack of sporting options for young females in the borough" explains Shari. "Lacrosse can be a major tool in developing leadership qualities in girls along with giving them a healthy sense of comradery, positive self esteem, and physical activity. After meeting Joe and Khalid I knew that we could help foster future leaders in Brooklyn through the fun sport of lacrosse".
Shari was recently named Girls Lacrosse Director for Brooklyn Lacrosse, and is looking to tap into her vast resources of former players and current top-level coaches. Shari will be joined with the most dynamic coaching staff in NYC women's lacrosse. Brooklyn Lacrosse will be hosting 3 free clinics in February, and is set to hit the field in early March on the new Pier 5 Field at Brooklyn Bridge Park. See more information here.
The Brooklyn Battery Lacrosse Club has it's first weekend in the books.
We have created a youth organization that both listens and delivers on it's mission to serve the youth of Brooklyn. We have stripped away the secrecy of decision making, and we function 100% in the best of our players and parents.
We are accountable to each and every person who has entrusted us with their child's safety, fitness and education, and we take this charge lightly. Nor will we ever.
We are a modern, nimble organization that has created a scalable model for growth that hasn't been seen in urban youth lacrosse (according to US Lacrosse).
We have created an organization with such a clear vision of leadership and action that we won the National US Lacrosse First Stick Grant before we ever put a player on the field.
We have created opportunities in neighborhoods that have never seen lacrosse. We have created an organization that reflects the diversity and vibrancy of Brooklyn.
We have forged relationships with some of great youth lacrosse programs in the area such as Brooklyn Prospect Charter School and Harlem Lacrosse. These local connections are critical for all of our success.
We continue to vibrant Board Members, Coaches and Volunteers. Embracing the ideas of others has allowed us to grow in ways we had never envisioned.
With our Fall season starting this weekend, there is no time to pause as Spring is just around the corner.
It's hard to put into words how rewarding and the last few months have been for us at the BBLC. We started with idea about how a youth sports organization could be run, and were empowered with a mission that looks to introduce lacrosse to neighborhoods that may never have seen the sport, while emphasizing "Fundamentals, Team, Respect and Brooklyn"
The support, from community centers to equipment manufacturers to US Lacrosse itself has been overwhelming. We have been welcomed into so many neighborhoods that I can truly say our program will be an diverse cross section of Brooklyn.
We have run a number of free clinics this summer at some great facilities, and hope to take that success into the Fall.
The biggest surprise? The number of girls who have showed up and expressed interest. We were unsure of where the girls program would go this Fall, until we saw our clinic turnout...these are good problems to have.
As anyone involved with a youth sports organization can tell you, locating field space can be a challenge. Through the tireless work of our Board, we are in a very good position and will make a fantastic announcement shortly. We feel that "where we play" says alot about our commitment to local communities, and also says alot about moving beyond the stereotype of lacrosse being a private school sport.
Locating our "indoor" home during the week has been a great process, and we have met with many program directors who would love to have us. We feel strongly that an indoor session during the week is critical to developing skills.
We are excited to contribute to the growth of the sport in Brooklyn, along side other programs like Brooklyn Prospect Charter School and the Crescents. In addition, we have made some great connections with the folks at The Frederick Douglas Academy in Harlem. Hopefully, many years from now, we can all look back to this time with a sense of accomplishment.
In closing, thank you all so very much for your support, both on the ground and through social media. We have very quickly become the most "liked" Brooklyn Lacrosse program on Facebook. Online attention is fine, but a youth sports program isn't much if it cant deliver on it mission. We have been hard at work delivering this summer, and look to see many of you this Fall.
Joe Nocella, Director
On behalf of the Brooklyn Battery Lacrosse Club Board of Directors