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            While patterned on Men's Lacrosse, Women's Lacrosse is actually a derivative, non-contact sport that was originally played by the indigenous peoples of America. The first tribe to play it was the Hauser tribe, of the Great Plains.  The modern game was introduced in 1890 in Scotland. Although the focus of both games is to outscore the opponent by shooting the lacrosse ball into the opponents' goal, the rules of women’s lacrosse differ significantly from men’s lacrosse.  Below are some of the rules specific to Women's Lacrosse.
Burlingtongirls’ lacrosse teams play in the Massachusetts Bay Youth Lacrosse League (MBGLL) and play by modified official US Women's Lacrosse rules.  Our mission is to promote girls’ youth lacrosse in an environment that emphasizes fun while developing skills, teamwork, good sportsmanship, and integrity.




Ball: regulation solid yellow ball.

Crosse: Length: regulation women's crosse (field stick for field players and goalie stick for goalkeepers) cut to a comfortable length. (Boys sticks are NOT permitted)

Pocket depth: as the crosse is held in a horizontal position, pressure is applied to and released from a ball dropped into the pocket. The ball must remain even with or above the wall of the crosse. Levels B and C players may use a youth stick with mesh or traditional stringing, or regulation women’s crosse, with a modified pocket. With a modified pocket, only half the ball may fall below the bottom of the sidewall.

Girls Safety Equipment
All field players (everyone but the goalie) must wear a mouth guard with no protruding tabs and ASTM approved women's regulation lacrosse goggles while on the field during games AND practices.

Goalkeepers must wear a regulation helmet, throat protector, mouth guard, chest protector and goalie gloves while on the field during games AND practices. Leg padding and pelvic protection is recommended but not required.

Goalkeeper equipment is provided.



     One of the significant differences between girls' and boys' lacrosse is that more players take the field in a regulation game on a girls' team. The following are the positions in the girls' game and the responsibilities that go along with them. Level C does not use all these positions.

The primary role of this position is keeping balls out of the net. A goalie must be quick on her feet and willing to go after loose balls around the crease area.

After the goaltender position, point is the most defensive-oriented position on the field. The player handling this position works closely with the goalie, communicating what the opponent is doing and orchestrating where players need to be on the field to counter the attack. A point player must be a good communicator to help prevent defensive breakdowns from occurring. Because the point player doesn't stray far from the net, she's often in position to intercept passes to the middle of the field while defending an attack.

Cover point
This player's main task is to cover the opposition's second home. Good footwork is an asset for excelling in this position because the player must stick with the opponent to deny passes and shots on goal. The cover point player is also relied on to make clearing passes, so she must be proficient at catching passes from the goalie and quickly turning up field to look for teammates who can receive the ball.

Third player
This player's key responsibility is covering the opposing team's third home. Important attributes for doing well in this position are good reflexes, the ability to read the opponent's attack, and the ability to jump into the passing lanes to intercept balls.

Left and right defensive wings
These positions require substantial running, as the players' primary responsibility is to guard the opponent's left and right attack wings.

The center's responsibility is to control the draw and play both defense and attack. She should have speed and endurance.  Because the position requires strong play both with and without the ball, as well as a variety of other skills, the team's best player usually handles this position.  The center patrols the middle of the field. When her team has control of the ball, she looks to step up into the action, where she can feed the ball to the first, second, and third home players. When her team is on defense, she retreats to her team's defensive half of the field, providing coverage against the opponent's center, disrupting the passing lanes, and looking to intercept balls delivered by the attack wings.

Left and right attack wings
The wings are also responsible for transitioning the ball from defense to attack.  They feed the ball to the players manning the first, second, and third home positions. They also must hustle back on defense to help out the left and right defensive wings.  Wings should have speed and endurance and be ready to receive the ball from the defense and run or pass the ball.

Third home
The third home's responsibility is to transition the ball from defense to attack. She should be able to feed the ball to first and second home players, as well as the right and left attack wings, and fill in wing areas. She also takes shots on goal when scoring opportunities arise and creates openings for herself to shoot or pass. 

Second home
This position is similar to the point guard position in basketball, because the second home orchestrates the offense and makes the passes that help the offense run smoothly and effectively. The second home is considered the playmaker. In lacrosse, this player should be an excellent ball handler, because she'll likely have the ball on her stick more than most of the other players. She should be able to shoot well from every angle and distance from the goal. The offense will be more difficult to defend if the second home player is a threat to score goals, too.

First home
This position represents the most offensive play on the lacrosse field. Located in front of the goal, the first home's main responsibilities are to score goals and to deliver accurate passes to teammates who are in scoring position. She should have excellent stick work.


Cradling: Cradling is the most basic skill in the game of lacrosse. The purpose of cradling is to maintain possession of the ball in one's crosse. There are different forms of cradling.  Some players use the full cradle which can be described as opening/closing a gate by holding the stick near the side of one's face and cradling from ear to ear. Players may also use a half cradle, which is more useful in carrying the ball full speed down the field. A half cradle can be described by moving the stick back and forth from the ear to the midline of one's body. It can allow players to create more opportunities for themselves on the field, in terms of dodging, passing or shooting.  With each cradle the emphasis should be on stick protection, or keeping the stick and ball within the space around one's body. Having a clear picture of where the ball is at all times and what movements could flow from each point in both full and half cradles will allow players to execute most of the other techniques in the game.

Pick-Ups or Scooping: Scooping is another very basic lacrosse skill to master. Scooping is picking up the ball from the ground with the head of one's stick. Lacrosse players must be willing to give their best effort in order to scoop up every ground ball before their opponent. It is extremely important to bend your knees, run through the pickup and begin cradling immediately with tight stick protection. Players should focus on getting their bottom hand on the stick down so the shaft is almost parallel to the ground. For young players, a practical way to think of this is scraping your knuckles across the grass. Practiced consistency is required in order to master scooping skills. In a competitive game situation, the player who demonstrates the greatest effort, determination, hustle and technique will most likely win the groundball pickup.

Passing and Throwing: Catching and throwing are crucial fundamentals of the game. It is so important to develop these skills. One of the best methods used to practice catching/throwing is to go up against a brick wall. It allows a person to work on eye hand coordination, accuracy and consistency through repetition. Players should place their dominant hand at the top and non-dominant hand at bottom of the stick. It is necessary to push forward and pull down, similar to a lever. Aim and follow through with the stick to the target. To increase distance of a throw, players should slide their top hand down the stick to get more leverage. Throwing against a wall will help adjust one’s distance and accuracy before throwing with friends or a team for the first time.

Catching: This is the act of receiving a passed ball with the crosse. When catching the ball, players need to really think about keeping their eye on the ball the entire time. In order to catch properly, one must give back with their stick on each catch and begin cradling immediately. Think of catching an egg to over-emphasize the give needed for every catch. Once again, it takes hours of practice be comfortable with this skill.

Checking: This is the act of using a controlled tap with a crosse on an opponent's crosse in an attempt to dislodge the ball.

Cutting: Is a movement by a player without the ball in anticipation of a pass.

Dodging: Is the act of suddenly shifting direction in order to avoid an opponent.

Shootings: The act of throwing the ball at the goal with the crosse in an attempt to score.


No scoreboards are allowed at MBGLL games. No scores are kept or recorded anywhere, including on program or team websites. Parents are to be on the opposite side of the field from players.

Grades 1-4:  (Level C): One coach is permitted on the field during game play for the purpose of instructing at the 3/4 grade levels.  No stick checking is allowed at this level.  This level has 20 minute halves of running time. MBGLL recommends seven field players and a goalkeeper.  If a team does not have a goalkeeper then some form of “goal mouth reduction” should be used in lieu of a goalkeeper. This could include tipping the net over or using commercial shot nets.  If a 3/4 team does not have a goal keeper, then that does not mean that they can place an additional player on the field.
     In this division, if the defender is in a position to check, and holds that position for 3 seconds, as determined by the umpire, the defender gains possession of the ball. The umpire will count the seconds. Players may not shoot from any free position unless there is a goalie. All penalties are “indirect” as in soccer. This level will use the restraining line and is required to keep 4 back. Officials are requested to remind players and coaches when a team is offside. They do not need to blow the whistle for a penalty. This level will use a 3 pass rule. The official will count 3 passes past the midfield, before a player can shoot on goal. If a shot is taken and deflected off the goalie or goal cage, the offensive can go directly to goal. If the goalie makes a save and the clear is intercepted, the offensive team must pass 3 times again. It is highly recommended that 3 different players pass the ball! This level will move toward the 3 second defensive rule next year.  

Grades 5/6:  (Level B) No stick checking is allowed at this level.  Each team has eleven field players, a goalkeeper, and 25 minute halves with running time.  Players may shoot from direct position.  No 3 pass rule is at this level; however, the 3 second defensive rule is in effect.  In this division, if the defender is in a position to check, and holds that position for 3 seconds, as determined by the umpire, the defender gains possession of the ball. More explanation is given in the Rules and Guidelines section.

Grades 7/8:  (Level A) Each team has eleven field players and a goalkeeper with 25 minute halves with running time. In this division, modified checking is permitted. Modified checking is defined as the defender striking the head of the stick when the entire stick is below shoulder level.  The defender must use a downward motion away from the other player's body.  Players may shoot from direct free position.  There is no three pass rule but players must use the 3 second defensive rule.


Each half of the game and any overtime periods is started with a draw. After each goal the game is restarted with a draw. If a four or more goal differential exists, in place of a draw the team with fewer goals will be awarded a free position at the center of the center circle.

Each center opponent places one foot toeing the centerline. The crosse is held above the hip and parallel to the centerline. The ball is sandwiched between the backs of the opposing player’s crosses and upon the whistle the center players push their sticks up and out, thus tossing the ball into the air. The ball must attain a height higher than the heads of the players taking the draw. An illegal draw will result in a free position being awarded to the non offending center. If both players draw illegally, or it cannot be determined which player was a fault, then the referee will toss the ball in the air between the two centers as they stand next to each other.

Start/Stop Play:
All play is started and stopped with a whistle. When the whistle is blown to stop play, all field players must "stand" by not moving their feet unless directed to move by the official. The goalkeeper may move inside of the goal circle but if she was outside of the goal circle when the whistle blew she also must stand. Play resumes on the next whistle.

A goal is scored when the ball passes completely over the goal line drawn between the two goal posts. A goal may be scored if the ball bounces off a defenders crosse or body but not off an attack player’s body. A goal will NOT be scored if the ball enters the cage after a whistle, if a crease violation occurs, if and attack player fouls the goalie, if the attack's crosse is deemed illegal, or if the shot is ruled dangerous.

Substitutions may be made at anytime the ball is in play, after goals and a halftime. Each team may substitute an unlimited number of players at any time during play. If substitutions are made while the ball is in play ("on the fly"), they must take place through the team substitution area by the scorer's table. The player leaving must be completely off the field before the substitute may enter the field. This includes the goalkeeper.

Duration of Play:
A game is made up of two twenty or twenty-five minute running time halves. The clock will stop after each goal and, during the last two minutes of each half, after every whistle sounded to stop play. Otherwise the clock will run. Official time is to be kept by the home team.

If the score is tied at the end of regulation time then a six-minute stop-clock overtime may be considered but only if agreed upon by both coaches and if the referee's time allows.

Each team is allowed one two-minute time-out per half which may be requested only after play is stopped when a goal is scored.


3 Second Rule:  This rule discourages defenders from just standing and swinging as an attack player runs by. Players cannot hold the ball for more than 3 seconds when closely guarded/marked and the defense has both hands on her stick and is in position to legally check were checking allowed. If the player with the ball takes the stick to the other side of her body and thus away from the defender making a legal check impossible, the 3-second count would be over. If the defender adjusts her position to where a legal check could be made, or the stick is brought back to a checkable position, the count starts again. If another teammate joins the defender and that second defender is in good position to check, the count starts again. The umpire will give an audible 3-second count. The purpose of this rule is to encourage good defensive positioning and to make the offensive player aware of her defender. The attack player must try to keep the stick away from the defender, and, if she does not, she will be forced to pass or she will lose the ball. Even when the defender may not check, if she is in good defensive position, she will force the attack player to pass. This will give her team a chance for a play on the ball either by interception, by blocking the attempted pass, or by forcing a bad pass and causing a ground ball.

Stick-to-stick contact: This does not violate the checking rule if the attack player, not the defender, initiates contact as in the following situations:
A) A defender holding her stick in good defensive position forces the attacker to cradle into her stick causing contact.
B)  A defender with her stick up in an attempt to block or intercept a pass or shot causes the attacker to make contact while in the act of passing or catching the ball.

Fouls: There are two types of fouls- Direct Free and Indirect Free.  In a direct foul they have the ability to shoot on goal.  Indirect they may not.  In all fouls, the fouling player is placed 4 meters behind the fouled player and the area in front of the fouled player is clear or “free”.
Shooting Space: Is the space in front of the ball carrier to the edge of the crease.  A defender who is not within a stick’s length of the ball carrier may not block the ball carrier or enter the “free space to the goal” when that attacker is in position to or in the act of shooting.  Violation results in a Direct Free position.
Crease Violation: Only one player may be in the goal crease at the time (usually the goalie). Violation creates a possession turn over to the opposing team.

Out of Bounds: Fields are lined with a fixed boundary marker.  There are two separate rules that govern out of bounds that depend on the type of play occurring.

Passing Plays:  If an offensive player attempts to pass the ball to a team mate and it goes out of bounds, the other team is awarded the ball.

Shots on Goal: If a shot on goal goes out of bound, whether it was deflected or not, the player closest to the ball at the time it goes out of bounds, from either team, is awarded possession of the ball.

Three-Pass Rule (Level C):  A team must not take a shot on goal until three passes, including the goalkeeper’s clear, are completed or attempted. Umpires have the final say in determining 3-pass completion/attempts and will count passes out loud.  Once the offense has fulfilled the three pass requirement, a new three pass count is not necessary as long as the ball has remained within the offensive half of the field (even if the defense plays the ball). The purpose of this rule is to get as many girls involved in every play as possible. It was implemented because teams would get the ball into the hands of one strong player who would run up the field alone and shoot the ball. A team must make three bona fide pass attempts (the ball does not need to be caught to count). MBGLL has asked umpires to use their judgment in assessing a bona fide pass. Typical criteria include requiring that the ball go above the shoulder during the pass and that the players be six feet apart. Umpires will count passes out loud and will tell the players when they have completed three passes. Coaches are NOT to count.  NOTE that umpires will not (as coaches should not) tell players that "they can shoot", because additional passes might be the right thing to do.  The intent of this rule is not to have teams make three passes and then, regardless of where the ball is, compel the player run to the goal and shoot. Once a team has completed three passes, this count is "reset" only when the opposing team gains possession of the ball in the opposing team's attacking half of the field. This rewards teams for playing good defense in their attacking zone...if they recover the ball they can immediately shoot. This rule also means that both teams can have three completed passes at the same time (if the defending team completes three passes in their defensive half of the field).



Major Fouls
  • Check roughly or recklessly. Checks will be controlled.
     (No stick checking will be allowed at the U12 level in the first four games of the season, full checking the second half of the season if both teams agree. If either team is not prepared to check, there will be no stick checking in that game)  (Full stick checking allowed throughout the U14 season. Checks will be downward and away from the body.)
  • Slash. Checks will be short and controlled, there must be recoil.
    Hold Crosse within the seven-inch sphere around opponent's face and throat.
  • Hook the bottom end of an opponent's crosse.
  • Reach across opponent when level or behind.
  • Block opponent' move in the path of an opponent with out giving her a chance to change direction.
  • Obstruct free space to goal, denying the attack the opportunity to shoot safely.
  • Remain in the 8 meter arc for more than 3 seconds unless marking an opponent within a sticks length away.
  • Set a moving or stationary pick out of the visual field of the opponent if she does not have enough space or time to change direction and contact occurs.
  • Detain by holding or pushing with body or crosse.
  • Trip an opponent, deliberately or otherwise.
  • Hold or cradle crosse within her own sphere or the sphere of opponent.
  • Charge, barge, shoulder or back into an opponent, or push with hand or body.
  • Propel the ball or follow through with crosse in a dangerous or uncontrolled manner.
  •  Shoot dangerously or without control. A dangerous shot is determined by distance, force and placement. A shot may not be directed at a field player or the goalkeeper's body (especially the head or neck). A shot may be called dangerous and a free position given to the goalkeeper even if it misses the goal.
  • Shoot from an indirect free position.
  • Violate the restraining line. (In this league this will result in a held whistle until all players have learned the restraining line rule. It is up to the coaches to instruct their teams on this rule and enforce the rule with their own team).

    Minor Fouls
  • Guard a ground ball with foot or crosse.
  • Check an opponent's cross when she is trying to get possession of the ball (checking an empty crosse).
  •  Guard the crosse with an arm, ward off or elbow with free arm.
  • Touch the ball with hand or body. (except goalkeeper)
  • Use hand or body to keep the ball in the crosse.
  •  Use any part of the body to impede, accelerate or change the direction of the ball.
  • Throw the crosse in any circumstance.
  • Take part in the game if she is not holding her crosse.
  • Draw illegally by: drawing too soon, if the movement of the crosse is not up and away, move before the whistle, or it the ball does not go higher then the heads of the players taking the draw.
  • On the center draw step into the center circle before the whistle. (except for two players taking the draw)
  • Play with a crosse that does not meet specifications.
  • Adjust crosse after it has been checked and allowed into the game.
  • Fail to be on the field after a time out or at half time.
  • Take part in the game wearing jewelry or illegal uniform.
  • Substitute illegally.
  • Move before the whistle, or fail to stand when the whistle is blown.
    Intentionally delay the game, fail to move four meters away, fail to wear a mouthpiece, or any behavior that the referee determines is a delay of game.
  • Deliberately cause the ball to go out of bounds.
  •  Score a goal with a crosse that does not meet the field crosse's specifications.
  •  Take a shot on goal until three passes, not including the goalkeeper's clear are completed or attempted. (League rule, possibly will be amended for the 2001 season to include the goalkeeper's clear as one of the passes).

Goal Circle Fouls
 1) Enter of have any part of her body or crosse in the goal circle at any time unless deputizing for the goalkeeper.

  • Allow the ball to remain in the goal circle for more than ten seconds.
  • Reach beyond the goal circle to play the ball in the air or on the ground with her hand.
  • Draw the ball into her goal circle when any part of her is grounded outside the circle.
  • Step back into the goal circle when she has possession of the ball. (She may toss the ball into the circle and follow it in.)
  • When outside the circle, throw any part of her equipment to her deputy.

Penalties for Fouls
  •  A foul results in a free position by the team that was fouled with all players moving 4 meters away from the player with the ball.
  • For a MAJOR FOUL the offending player moves 4 meters BEHIND the girl awarded the free position.
  • For a MINOR FOUL the offending player moves 4 meters AWAY in the direction from which she approached.
  • In the critical scoring area, inside the 8 meter arc, a major foul by the defense will result in a free position taken on the 8 meter arc (a direct shot on goal).
  • A minor foul will result in an indirect free position in which case no shot may be taken until the ball has been played by another player.


The following is a list of terms you may frequently hear while watching a lacrosse game. Some, you may be familiar with, others, may sound a little odd at first. But all are part of knowing the game of lacrosse.

  • Clear: Any action taken by a player within the goal circle to pass or carry the ball out of the goal circle.
  • Critical Scoring Area: An area 15 meters in front of and to each side of the goal and nine meters behind the goal. An eight-meter arc and 12 meter fan are marked in the area.
  • Crosse (Stick): The equipment used to throw, catch, check and carry the ball.
  • Crosse Checking: Stick to stick contact consisting of a series of controlled taps in an attempt to dislodge the ball from the crosse.
  • Deputy: A player who enters the goal circle when the goalie is out of the goal circle and her team is in possession of the ball.
  • Draw: A technique to start or resume play by which a ball is placed in between the sticks of two standing players and drawn up and away.
  • Eight-Meter Arc: A semi-circular area in front of the goal used for the administration of major fouls. A defender may not remain in this area for more than three seconds unless she is within a stick's length of her opponent.
  • Free Position: An opportunity awarded to the offense when a major or minor foul is committed by the defense. All players must move four meters away from the player with the ball. When the whistle sounds to resume play, the player may run, pass or shoot the ball.
  • Free Space To Goal: A cone-shaped path extending from each side of the goal circle to the attack player with the ball. A defense player may not, for safety reasons, stand alone in this area without closely marking an opponent.
  • Goal #Circle: The circle around the goal with a radius of 2.6 meters (8.5 feet). No player's stick or body may “break” the cylinder of the goal circle.
  • Grounded: Refers to any part of the goalkeeper's or deputy's body touching the ground for support outside of the goal circle when she attempts to play the ball from inside the goal circle.
  • Indirect Free Position: An opportunity awarded to the offense when a minor foul is committed by the defense inside the 12 meter fan. When the whistle sounds to resume play, the player may run or pass, but may not shoot until a defender or one of her teammates has played the ball.
  • Marking: Being within a stick's length of an opponent.
  • Penalty Lane: The path to the goal that is cleared when a free position is awarded to the attacking team.
  • Scoring Play: A continuous effort by the attacking team to move the ball toward the goal and to complete a shot on goal.
  • Stand: All players, except the goalkeeper in her goal circle, must remain stationary following the sound of any whistle.
  • Sphere: An imaginary area, approximately 18 cm (seven inches) which surrounds a player's head. No stick checks toward the head are allowed to break the sphere.
  • 12 Meter Fan: A semi-circle in front of the goal used for the administration of minor fouls.
  • Warning Cards: A yellow card presented by an umpire to a player is a warning which indicates that she will next receive a red card and be suspended from further participation if she continues to play dangerously and/or conduct herself in an unsportsmanlike manner. A green card is presented by an umpire to the team captain indicating a team caution for delay of game.




Level C: Recommended field size is 50yds. x 25yds.
Level B: Recommended field size is 90yds. x 50yds.
Level A: Recommended field size is 100yds. x 70yds.


     USLacrosse requires all players, coaches, officials, parents and spectators to sign and abide by a ""Code of Conduct"" that embodies basic common sense principles, demonstrates consideration of others, and projects a positive image to our young men and women.   Individuals and/or teams participating in US Lacrosse events that fail to abide by this code will be subject to ejection and disqualification from future US Lacrosse events. Thank you for your help in promoting these principles.  

The Code of Conduct  
     Players, coaches, spectators and parents are to conduct themselves in a manner that "Honors the Game" and demonstrates respect to other players, coaches, officials and spectators. In becoming a member of the lacrosse community an individual assumes certain obligations and responsibilities to the game of lacrosse and its participants. The essential elements in this "Code of Conduct" are HONESTY and INTEGRITY. Those who conduct themselves in a manner that reflects these elements will bring credit to the sport of lacrosse, themselves, their team, and their organization. It is only through such conduct that our sport can earn and maintain a positive image and make its full contribution to youth sports in the United States and around the world. U.S. Lacrosse and its Youth Council support the following behaviors for those participating or involved in any way with U.S. Lacrosse and youth lacrosse in general: The essential elements of the "Code of Conduct" must be adhered to.  
  • Sportsmanship and teaching the concepts of fair play are essential to the game, and must be taught and developed both at home and on the field during practices and games.
  • The emphasis on winning should never be placed above the value of good sportsmanship, the concepts of fair play, or the skills of the game.
  • Derogatory comments are unacceptable. Use positive reinforcement with players and adults alike. It should be remembered that criticism, once made, can never be retracted.
  • The safety and welfare of the players are of primary importance.
  • No jewelry… no exceptions.
  • Coaches must always be aware of the tremendous influence they have on their players. They are to strive to be positive role models in dealing with young people, as well as with adults.
  • Officials are expected to conduct themselves as professionals and in a manner that demonstrates courtesy and fairness to all parties while exercising their authority on the field.
  • Adults involved with the game must never permit anyone to openly or maliciously criticize, badger, harass, or threaten an official.
  • Knowledge of the Rules of Lacrosse must be respected and adhered to by all who participate in the game of lacrosse, both in the letter and the spirit of the game. Attempts to manipulate rules in an effort to take unfair advantage of an opponent, or to teach deliberate unsportsmanlike conduct, is considered unacceptable conduct.
  • Eligibility requirements, such as age and previous level of participation, must be followed. They have been established to encourage and maximize participation, as well as promote safety.


     There are many aspects to Lacrosse that will be developed over time. For many players/parents, this is their first experience with Lacrosse. Usually after the first or second game most players have a good understanding of the basics.
     The 3/4  grade games will have one coach from each team running on the field with the players, assisting with rules, field positioning, and anything that comes up. This is where most of the game situations will be learned (positioning, rules, etc). The majority of practice time will be focused on the basics: conditioning, scooping, throwing, and catching.
      The most import mission of BYLA is to get the kids familiar with lacrosse and to have fun! All volunteers are welcome and we can always use the help. Our organization is fully staffed by volunteers and we need as many as we can to make our kids experience a happy, fun filled and safe experience.