Strikers Fox Valley start 'One Community, One Club' campaign
Strikers Fox Valley is announcing its "One Community, One Club" campaign to enhance its image as the one of the top sports training organization in the western suburbs of Chicago.
The campaign, which kicks off the nonprofit's 32nd year of club soccer for youth, is designed to bring Strikers' message of "better players make better people" to a broader audience throughout the suburbs.
Long recognized as a leader in youth training and especially soccer for the Fox Valley region, Strikers Fox Valley was established in the 1980s out of a need to bring high-level training and the experience of traveling soccer to suburban communities that did not have that opportunity.
The club was the brainchild of four friends who wanted every kid in the Fox Valley region to be able to play if they wanted to. One of those original four, Pat Feulner, still heads the organization today. He believes that providing a disciplined approach to teaching excellence on the field would also build character, leadership, teamwork and foster a sense of community -- both on the field and off.
"We've worked hard on behalf of area youth and have developed a program that kids and parents respect and enjoy," said Feulner. "We're in our fourth decade now, and we've grown steadily to the point where we're the clear leader in club soccer in the region. And we feel like we're just getting started."
Strikers Fox Valley operates a 50,000-square-foot indoor training center located at 1000 Kirk Road in Geneva -- one of the most complete facilities of its kind in the Midwest. In addition, Strikers' 20 coaches make use of a variety of outdoor fields around the Tri-Cities area. Typically, players at Strikers come from all over; the 2019 outgoing senior girls team included players from seven different communities.
"'One Community, One Club' is about our efforts to offer the best program we can to these kids," said Kevin Ward, director of coaching and player development for Strikers. "We're looking to transform soccer for these communities. Growing stronger bonds, where the culture runs thick. Imagine the possibilities if there were a unified approach to youth soccer training across the Fox Valley, and beyond."
Coach Ward says that in creating the best model for training young athletes, the result is winning teams. But not entirely for the reasons people might expect -- hard work, lots of technical training, commitment on the field. Yes, it is all of those things, he says -- but then there are the intangibles.
"We use soccer to teach so much," Ward says. "We help to develop better people by building character, fostering leadership and resilience, and practicing patience. But there's a lot more going on, too -- Strikers is a community where friendships can flourish and experiences off the field are valued." Some of those experiences include participating in food drives for the homeless or collecting sneakers and shoes for distribution in third-world countries. This year, Strikers donated dozens of meals to first responders during the onset of COVID19. Feulner says the combination of effort both on and off the field builds community and camaraderie.
"It's a winning formula," Feulner adds. "We're constantly innovating, but we're also very confident that we have the most comprehensive program in this part of the state."
Information regarding programs and tryouts at Strikers Fox Valley is available by calling the club at (630) 262-0071.
If no one is available when calling, parents are encouraged to leave their name, email and return phone number to ensure a prompt call back.
Strikers Fox Valley Soccer Club is a nonprofit youth training organization founded in 1989 with the mission of building a highly cohesive, competitive, fun and family-oriented environment, where players can enjoy soccer from an early age all the way through high school and beyond.
Over the last three decades, Strikers has become a nationally respected club for soccer excellence. Strikers' focus is to teach the best soccer techniques and strategy, along with a philosophy and approach designed to build character and help kids be better prepared to embark on any endeavor in life.
For more information, visit StrikersFoxValley.com or call (630) 262-0071.