Mountain Crusaders Pop Warner launches youth football, cheer & dance program in High Country Counties

Published 8:29 am Tuesday, November 28, 2023

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High Country counties of Carter and Johnson (TN), Carroll and Grayson (VA), and Ashe, Alleghany, Wilkes, Avery, Caldwell, and Watauga (NC) are set to welcome the esteemed national organization, Pop Warner, offering football, cheer, and dance opportunities for aspiring young athletes.

Pop Warner, recognized as the largest and oldest youth football and cheer & dance program globally, has engaged over 400,000 boys and girls aged 5 to 16 across the United States. Its mission revolves around fostering structured team sports participation, imparting fundamental values, skills, and knowledge crucial for lifelong application, and stressing academic success importance.

The Mountain Crusaders Pop Warner, part of Pop Warner’s Mid-South Region, aims to provide a platform for youngsters in the High Country to embrace the fundamentals of football, cheerleading, and dance. Upholding ideals of sportsmanship, scholarship, and physical fitness, the program enforces stringent rules, including equipment standards, volunteer screening, and coaching certifications.

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The NFL association with Pop Warner boasts a notable statistic, with around 70% of NFL players having previously participated in Pop Warner programs. The benefits of joining this program are extensive: every child makes the team without tryouts, guaranteed participation, emphasis on teamwork over individual stats, stringent safety measures with extensively trained coaches, and a track record for top regional and national championships.

Mountain Crusaders Athletic Association proudly aligns its mission with Pop Warner’s vision, emphasizing ethical behavior, inclusivity, fairness, skill development, and athlete potential realization.

Excitement is building for the Mountain Crusaders Pop Warner program, slated to begin sign-ups on January 1st. As part of their fundraising initiatives, the association invites the community to a “Visit with Santa” event on December 3rd, offering photo opportunities with Santa at Southern Scoops in Jefferson, NC, for a small donation per family.

To stay updated and learn more about the Mountain Crusaders Pop Warner league, individuals can join the Facebook page at Questions and inquiries can be directed to The program aims to provide an enriching athletic experience for youth and welcomes community involvement in shaping this endeavor.