The History of Iowa City Kickers

Soccer began in Iowa City in 1978 with thirteen participants. This initial nucleus led to the formation of the Iowa City Kickers. The growth of the club has been due to the enthusiasm and participation of children and parents alike. We are a volunteer organization and can only grow through our own contributions.

From the very beginning the primary goals of the Iowa City Kickers have been recreation and participation. The organization has always hoped to provide the source and the opportunity for children to have fun. All children within the organization are to participate an equal amount during playing time. By creating an atmosphere of camaraderie the Kickers hope to help children develop their social skills, their spirit of cooperation, new friendships, a love for soccer, sportsmanship, and soccer skills.

Winning or losing and having good or bad players are not our goals. Kickers will win only when we have had enjoyment playing the game and have had participation of all children who are skilled and unskilled alike in the art of soccer. We must remind our players, our coaches, our commissioners, and, above all, the parents of our players that the spirit of the game is participation and enjoyment. The glory is found in playing the game, not in victory.

Participation is not only the responsibility of our players. The organization exists only because parents have donated their time and skills as coaches, commissioners, officers, equipment managers, field maintenance support, and committee members. The support provided to the volunteer coaches and to the players by enthusiastic spectators is invaluable. Without this level of volunteer participation there is no Kickers association.

A tradition of voluntary participation has enabled us to grow into an organization which offers youth leagues from the kindergarten level through high school and an adult league for players over 18. Our philosophy is to try to organize teams to allow children to participate within their neighborhood or with their classmates from school.

Our unprecedented growth has allowed the Kickers to more fully develop the sport of soccer in the Iowa City area. We have been instrumental in the development of soccer within the school system by providing not only experienced players but monetary and volunteer support as well. The children who have developed soccer skills and an appreciation for the sport have a continuing need for personal and fundamental growth. Our organization provides a spring board which allows these young people, and some of their coaches, to venture into competitive participation outside the Kickers organization.

The participatory and recreational nature of the Kickers program has contributed to youth skills which need further expansion. We hope to have achieved our indirect goal of fostering enthusiasm for the sport of soccer in the youth of the Iowa City area. It is part of our responsibility to avoid hindering those who want to go beyond the recreational level of Kickers soccer by allowing all players to participate in recreational soccer through the Kickers organization.

We have come a long way from a thirteen player league and yet we have a continuing challenge before us. We will meet it only through the ongoing commitment to our two fundamental goals, recreation and participation.