Western DuPage Special Recreation Association launches Special Olympics youth flag football

Western DuPage Special Recreation Association recently launched the latest addition to its roster of programs: Special Olympics Flag Football designed specifically for ages 7 to 15.

Building on the success of its existing flag football program catering to ages 16 or older, WDSRA aims to extend the joys of teamwork, sportsmanship, and physical fitness to younger participants. This program promises to instill fundamental flag football skills such as passing and flag pulling, while offering ample opportunities for scrimmage. This is a unique offering for young athletes in our area.

The Real Story

Parent Empowerment: When a parent expressed interest in finding additional athletic opportunities for her son, WDSRA responded promptly by expanding its athletic offerings for ages 7-15. This proactive approach led to a surge in recruitment and ultimately paved the way for the introduction of the flag football program. This program was also a parent led request. This parent is available for an interview to expand on her story.

Passionate Coach and Staff: With the guidance of a passionate, seasoned coach at the helm, excitement for the program is building momentum. The coach has played several years of football at the youth, high school and collegiate levels himself. He has coached youth sports since 2018 and youth tackle football since 2020 with the Naperville Saints. In addition, he has recruited high school football players to further enhance the learning experience and mentorship of our young athletes. This coach is available for an interview.

WDSRA aims to provide a supportive and positive environment where young athletes with special needs can thrive and develop their abilities.

“This program is not just about learning how to play football; it’s about building confidence, making new friends, and being part of a team. We are thrilled to offer this opportunity for young athletes,” said Macey Horbach, WDSRA athletics supervisor.

The program runs 9 to 10 a.m. Saturdays, June 8 to July 20, at Naperville North High School, 899 N. Mill St.

For more information, visit

Note: Special Olympics Flag Football – Flag Football is currently an officially sanctioned Special Olympics sport for ages 16 or older. The Youth Flag Football program launching is designed to prepare young athletes to join the official program when they turn 16 years old.

The Western DuPage Special Recreation Association provides engaging, community-based recreational programs and inclusion services for children, teens, and adults with special needs. It offers Special Olympics, adapted sports, dance and art programs, camps, trips, special events, and more. Its mission, the development of individuals through recreation, makes it possible for individuals to grow personally, connect with their community and discover their potential.

WDSRA is an award-winning organization and a cooperative extension of nine park districts serving the communities of Bloomingdale, Carol Stream, Glen Ellyn, Naperville, Roselle, Warrenville, West Chicago, Wheaton, and Winfield.

Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the "flag" link in the lower-right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.