Saturday, September 18, 2010

Friday Night Lights

When I was a kid, Friday nights in the fall meant it was football night. My friends and I would sit on the rickety old wooden bleachers and cheer for the not-so-good Bison Cardinals. I don't remember details from any of the games, but there are lots of things I do remember: sitting on each other's feet to stay warm, hot chocolate, snow, and fun. It's an experience I want my own kids to have, even though their hometown is a lot bigger than mine, the Friday night football experience is one every child should have.

I've been meaning to take the kids, especially Jake, to a Bismarck High School football game. Lexi and Jake are huge Demons fans and I think they even bleed maroon already. Jake is also a football nut, and actually understands the game. I have always felt he should be at the home games, cheering on the Demons. Lexi has been to a few games with her friends, but Jake had never had the chance, until last night.

Lexi, Lizzy and Lexi's friends!
It was Bismarck High vs. Century High.. a big in-town rivalry. I figured this was the perfect game for us. I had a friend get tickets for the kids, Jake's buddy Grant and me (who knew you could get tickets in advance? I am such a class B kid sometimes!) We had  Lexi's friends and their parents over for supper, then we all headed to the game together. The weather was awful - rain, snow and wind....we were soaked before we even sat down. The game didn't go the way we hoped - BHS lost, 20-14. Jake's friend was bored and cold - but Jake and the girls were so into the game, and the experience, we stayed until the last two minutes of the game.

Do I wish the weather would have been better? Absolutely. Do I wish the Demons would have won? Of course. But I would not change those things if I could, because they just add to the experience, and the memory these kids will have forever. The kids sat near us (not beside us parents, that would not be cool), watched the game and even cheered... Jake even made a good call, before the ref did (pass interference.... finally, playstation and NFL Sundays are paying off!)

Jake and his buddy, Grant enjoying some concessions!

We will go to another game, and cheer even louder for the Demons. One day, maybe we'll even get to watch Jake play for BHS. But even if he doesn't play football in high school, you can bet we will still go to the games, because now that my kids have had a taste of the Friday night tradition, they've decided it's a tradition we will continue, no matter how cold and miserable the weather is. Afterall, the weather, and the fun with friends, are the details they'll remember long after they've graduated from Bismarck High.

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