Colorado Rush Soccer Club

News Detail

4

Jan, 2019

LANSING SOCCER COMMUNITY GROWS WITH HELP OF MICHIGAN RUSH'S SCOTT DANE

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Fans flocked to the 2010 FIFA World Cup for the international play, energetic atmosphere, and camaraderie of the world’s game. Michigan Rush’s Scott Dane came away from the 2010 FIFA World Cup with a dream. This dream for a free-play soccer field would draw communities and their youth in to see the benefits the common language of soccer can bring.


When Dane travelled from Lansing, Michigan to South Africa for the World Cup, he witnessed a unique structure that was transforming the surrounding areas, sparking a dream to bring the idea of free-play fields back to the United States.


“In the lead up to the World Cup in South Africa, FIFA built Football Centers for Hope that were community centers with mini soccer fields.  The mini soccer fields were put in place to attract youth to the community center where financial literacy, academic support, HIV/AIDS education, etc. could be administered.  I loved the idea of a mini soccer field being a positive gathering place for youth.”


Dane and co-creator Cam Gnass began to fundraise for Beacon Field at Ferris Park, Lansing’s first community-owned, free-play, LED lit, miniature turf field.


A free-play field facilitates community development, positive interaction, and allows families that cannot afford or do not have access to a field with the opportunity to do so in an open, dynamic environment. The field brings together Lansing natives and the growing international community of the town in a constructive experience.


In addition to the community aspect of Beacon Ferris, the model of free-play has been seen to produce higher levels of physical activity, in addition to developing the high school athlete outside organized sport. Free-play supports creativity of the player, self-motivation, and overall enjoyment of the game. Beacon Ferris encourages an active lifestyle by providing a space for the community to pursue their passion together.


“We have talked to the neighbors that reside around Ferris Park and they all love that Beacon Soccer Field gets used by so many kids on a daily basis,” Dane said.

“There have been at least 2 real estate listings that have included ‘walking distance to Beacon Soccer Field’ in them, which is a great indicator of the value of Beacon Field.


I coach high school soccer and I've had fellow coaches tell me that they believe the Lansing Schools have become better because their players play at Beacon Soccer Field year-round.  One of my former players just completed his career at Michigan State University and he has told me he believes the level of play at urban schools has increased because of Beacon Field.”


Beacon Ferris enhances the neighborhood and community atmosphere. Dane continued on how the field is creating friendships and interaction between kids that otherwise may not cross paths.


“In the most recent video we produced, the boys talked about going to each other's houses after playing at Beacon and trying different foods. The players at Beacon come from incredibly diverse backgrounds, yet they have found common ground at the field and have taken the friendships beyond the field.”


The success of Beacon Ferris Park has spurred the creation of Beacon SW, the second free-play park to include a ½ mile walking path and playground. Completion of the walking path and playground is scheduled for Spring 2019, however the field is operational and has already seen plenty of activity, even in the colder Michigan temperatures.

As Beacon SW finishes additions to the park in 2019, Rush Soccer is excited to see and support the continual growth of the free-play movement to encourage our players to be students of the game, regardless the context.


If you would like to be a part of Beacon SW and the free-play movement, please visit here.

Learn more about Beacon Soccer Field here.


Contact

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Littleton, Colorado 80127

Phone : 303-986-5200

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