PORTER WILSON AWARD 2010
DENMARK & SWEDEN
FROM COPENHAGEN to HJORRING to HACKSVIK
- LONE SPREADS WOMEN'S FLAG FOOTBALL IN SCANDINAVIA.
I was introduced to flag football when I met Diane Beruldsen (who was promoting this new sport in Denmark) in Copenhagen summer 1998, and we started to train in fälledparken (not at a regular sport field, but in an area where there was open grass) .
My first great memory was when I played in halftime of the Danish Superbowl X. The men played american tackle football (the game was not so exciting), and us women were invited by DAFF to play in the game's half time (this was exciting). Then I scored my very first touch down! At the end of our demonstration half time game, all the women from Denmark, Nederlands and United States were each given a rose by the President of DAFF (Danish American Football Federation)- Sane Ewe (she said she never gave roses to football players before : ). Copenhagen mermaids was working with Daff to develop women flagfootball in Denmark.The trip was fun, and I wanted more of this sport.
" I HAVE MANY MEMORIES DUE TO THE FLAG FOOTBALL, THE IWFFA AND ALL THE GREAT OPPORTUNITY TO EXPERIENCE SUCH A DIFFERENT AND EXCITING SPORT HERE IN SCANDINAVIA"
I traveled to the United States to compete and played in Key West 1999 for the Danish team: Copenhagen Mermaids (first women's flag football team in Denmark). We must have been the very first Danish team ever to play in the United States as well : ). In 2000, I played on: Team Nordic in this Key West tournament which was very much – huge fun! This was a very great grupp of women! On the team were women from: Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland and Denmark! We played so well, that we went into a higher level of competition.
Back in Denmark and in summer 2000 midsummer tournament in Copenhagen with the finnish national team and another finnish team. It was great fun to help train and prepare the Copenhagen mermaids for that tournament. We did really well everything taken into consideration. I was so proud of my team! First Danish IWFFA tournament in august 2000 – Copenhagen mermaids played against a combined Swedish/Norwegian team which Diane, the president of the IWFFA, played as quarterback for the team. We gave Diane a very hard time (which I am very proud of : )
I finished my education December 2000 and moved to the outskirts of Denmark 2001 to cure animals - mostly cows (I am a veterinarian).
Diane (who has been back and forth to Scandinavia to train girls and women to play flag football, came to Hjörring 2003 and helped us start a new team. A group from Hjörring participated in Gothenburg 2003 in a combined Norwegian/Danish team as Scandinavian Devils. Those new players formed a new team , Danish devils in Hjörring a great group, and very skilled athletes.
Danish devils arranged their first tournament whitsunday 2004 and has had a tournament every year except 2010 (there only one team signed up). Danish Devils travelled to Key West 2005 to compete. We had an amazing trip.
In 2005 I moved to Sweden with my family, for a new start in life. In 2006 I bought a small farm in Håcksvik. In Spring 2008 I trained a small group of women flag football in Håcksvik. We participated in Gothenburg 2008 tournament with a combined Håcksvik / loose women team. I Played in Denmark and Gothenburg 2009.
In 2010, the IWFFA / Diane came to Håcksvik for a huge flag football training camp.
There were many women, we trained the whole day, ended with a game, and that night had a wonderful party with all the women. We sang, we ate, it was warm and cozy. What a wonderful party that night.
" I have played many Scandinavian tournaments as a Loose Woman or with my team. I just love to play flag football"
I have many memories due to the flag football, the IWFFA and all the great opportunity to experience such a different and exciting sport here in Scandinavia.
Danish Devils arranged the first officiating clinic in Hjörring 2005 - To train players as officials. Bill Klitgaard was our instructor and soon our flag football players learned how to officiate as well.