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    Rugby is Coming to Lynchburg Again

    The City of Lynchburg’s Parks and Recreation Department has partnered with Lynchburg’s own Blackwater Rugby Football Club to bring the adult men’s rugby football tournament to the City.  Teams from Washington and Lee, Richmond, Blacksburg, Roanoke, Charlottesville and Washington DC will participate in the Virginia Commonwealth Games - Adult Rugby Championships on Saturday, July 15 at CVU Soccer Complex, at 5635 Campbell Highway, in Campbell County.   This tournament is part of the Lynchburg Parks and Recreation’s Youth Rugby Initiative.

    The tournament will follow the same model as the Olympics Rugby Sevens. Games will begin at 10:00 a.m. with the tournament wrapping up the same day by crowning the Virginia Commonwealth Games Adult Rugby at the conclusion of the Championship Game scheduled for 4:30 p.m.  The public is invited to attend and support the local Blackwater Rugby Football Club.  Admission is free.

    The Lynchburg Parks and Recreation’s Youth Rugby Initiative also involves building a multi-purpose field at Peaks View Park on Field #10 to host rugby and football games.  Field construction is slated to begin this fall.  The initiative kicked off on Saturday, July 8 with a Rugby Fun Day.  In addition, Middle School Intramural Flag Rugby is being coordinated with the Blackwater Rugby Football Club, Lynchburg Parks and Recreation Department and Lynchburg City Schools. That league is slated for spring 2018 at various Lynchburg middle school fields.

    “The long-term goal of the Youth Rugby Initiative is to develop rugby skills of our area youth so they can compete for college scholarships.  When rugby became an official Olympic sport, many colleges and universities moved their men’s rugby teams from club to varsity sports status and began offering scholarships.  We want to be on the front end of the rugby scholarship awards. We are especially hopeful that players coming from low income circumstances will have the opportunity for a college education via a rugby scholarship.  This is a poverty initiative that is unique in its approach. Overall, the adult and youth rugby initiative is in line with the portion of our department mission that encourages healthy, active living by providing the programs and infrastructure to support the initiative,” said Jennifer Jones, Lynchburg Parks and Recreation Department Director.