Surely, the one thing that unites us as a species (besides our thumbs), is the desire to document that we were here! We were in the world! Remember us when we’re gone! AVENGE ME!
Anyway, people do this in any number of ways – growing long, gross curly fingernails; making cheeseburgers so big, they need to be flipped with snow shovels. And now, some members of Edmonton’s Flag Football Association aspire to do it with the longest running flag football game in history. EVER.
The event, happening the Canada Day long weekend, was dreamed up by flag footballers, Kail Schofield, Michael Dugan and Michael MacFynn.
“It came up over coffee one day, between me and Dugan,” says Kail. “We had seen that the world’s longest hockey game was going on. We thought to ourselves, what would be a good way to promote our sport?’
The obvious answer: by playing it for two days straight!
“The unofficial record is 25 hours, 50 minutes,” explains Kail. “We’re shooting for 50 hours. We’re looking to have a certain amount of guys so we can do it in shifts over the entire weekend.”
Yes, that’s right: starting at noon on July 1st, the footballers are going to keep playing right through until 2 pm on July 3rd.
It’s not just for bragging rights though – let’s be honest, any chump with 1000 pounds of ground beef and a snow shovel can do that. The game will benefit the research of Dr. Bernard Thebaud at the Stollery Children’s Hospital – where he’s working to increase the survival odds for premature babies with lung problems,
The event has a personal connection to the Stollery. Organizer Michael Dugan’s daughter has cerebral palsy and epilepsy, and visits the facility frequently.
Kail says they’ve had great reaction to the event so far – especially from EFFA members.
“Within the league, we’ve obviously had a lot of members step up, and we’re also getting people from outside the league who didn’t know it existed.”
Including people who played football casually, or were high school athletes.
“We’re getting a lot of Al Bundy-s,” jokes Kail.
For those of us who, like me, do not know what flag football is, Kail explains that it’s different from both football and tackle football.
“In touch football.. all you have to do is touch. We literally have a “flag” that hangs down.” Players then take out their opponent by grabbing the flag, as opposed to tackling. “It’s a like a hybrid,” he says.
Organizers are still looking for some help with their event. If you’d like to participate, volunteer or act as a corporate sponsor (Kail says they’ve done their best to keep the events on a bare bones budget, but they could still use a hand), you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or check out the World’s Longest Flag Football Game on Facebook.
The weekend ramps up the morning of July 1st with a pancake breakfast at 9 a.m. – the game kicks off at noon.