Thu, April 02

Mingus football hosts annual youth camp

Campers work on their defensive skills at the 2019 Mingus Youth Football Camp on Wednesday at Mingus Union. VVN/James Kelley

Campers work on their defensive skills at the 2019 Mingus Youth Football Camp on Wednesday at Mingus Union. VVN/James Kelley

This week Mingus Union football held it annual kids camp with camp alumni instructing.

The 2019 Mingus Marauders Youth Football Camp ran from Monday to Thursday for kids ages five to 14.

“It’s been going really well, we’ve had over 75 kids everyday out for camp,” Mingus head coach Robert Ortiz said on Wednesday night. “I’ve had our players come in and say ‘coach I can tell the kids are getting better, they’re very receptive to what we’re teaching them,’ they’re having fun, it’s fun watching our kids be in charge, trying to direct and instruct younger kids than themselves, trying to watch them keep attention spans as much as they can. It’s a good time and it looks like it’s been pretty fun for everybody involved.”

With the current high school varsity players coaching at the camp, there are cases where some alumni of the camp are now coaching.

“Oh we have a ton of those kids,” Ortiz said. “As a matter of fact we had Peter Calandra give a speech (Tuesday) night — one of our seniors leaders for this upcoming season — and he talked about that, how he used to go to this camp and he was probably at the camp when I was coaching the camp, when I played here. He did the math himself and said he would have been in the seven and eight year old group. It’s been pretty good to see. Like I said, it’s a good community event and our boys seem to be enjoying it as much as the kids.”

Ortiz, who also graduated from MUHS, said he went to the camp from age seven to junior high.

The Camp Verde High football youth camp will be July 23-25.

Alumni Friday night lights

Mingus Union’s annual alumni game has returned this year with a twist.

The alumni game, though it is actually a series of games, will be Friday at 7 p.m., instead of a Thursday like last year.

“We moved it to a Friday in hopes of getting more participation from some of the alumni because when I reached out to a lot of them some of them said ‘hey I have work Friday, so to drive up Thursday after work and get back in time for work Friday is kinda not feasible’ so we pushed it back a day in hopes that we’d have more participation,” Ortiz said. “So we’ll have that going at Friday at 7 p.m. and registration starts at 6 p.m. It’s free for everybody.”

While the high school teams are playing, their numerous alumni coaches are expected to play.

“Any of our alumni coaches will play,” Ortiz said. “It’ll be a good time, I’ll probably only do the alumni versus alumni part just because we’ll have the JV going and I’ll be calling the varsity side so we’ll just kinda go through that. But it’ll be a good time, it seems like everyone’s kinda gearing up, getting ready for that.”

Marauder football golf

The 2nd Annual Red Dot Football Golf Tournament is set for this Saturday.

It will be held at Sedona Golf Resort starting at 7 a.m. with registration starting at 6 a.m.

“As of right now I believe we are right around the same number of golfers that we had last year, which is good to see consistency,” Ortiz said.

The tournament features 18 holes of golf, a cart, hot lunch, longest drive contests for men and women, closest to the pin and raffle prizes. There’s a chance to win a Chevy Malibu with a hole-in-one.

The cost is $90 per player and $360 per foursome. For more information go to

“You can pay on site, so if you come with a foursome they can pay on site and can take part,” Ortiz said. “So it should be a good time.”

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