Lacrosse Grows in Popularity in Minnesota
The game of lacrosse is growing in popularity in Minnesota, according to the Minnesota State High School League.
The league sanctioned nine girls programs back in the spring of 2002 with 400 girls participating. This year, there were 63 girls programs and 58 boys programs with approximately 6,000 boys and girls participating.
Ian Flam owns Northstar Lacrosse, a company that operates a retail outlet and several lacrosse camps. Flam says his camps have seen dramatic growth. "We had 50 kids our first year, and now we're up to 300," he said. According to Flam, in Minnesota the industry has at time struggled to keep up with interest, "There have been years we've had to turn away kids, and with facilities and staff, we can only accommodate so many."
Jenifer Forst of Minnetonka says her three sons have all played other sports but have given them up for lacrosse. "I think there may be a little recreational basketball here and there, but I think in general, I think they're looking at lacrosse as the sport they love the most."
Forst's son Elliot says he like lacrosse because he can work on his skills alone if he wants to. "You can use a wall, you could use anything really works. You don't have to have anything with you to practice. You can practice cradling or practice your dodges or moves, you can pretty much practice all on your own if you need to."
Northstar Lacrosse owner Flam says he sees the growth of the sport continuing over the next decade, "I see it rivaling hockey big time! In 10 years in Minnesota it's going to be the hottest sport."