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Football Tournament Honors North Arlington Coach Dan Gilmore's Legacy

The Gilmore family: Dan, Dylan, Haidyn, Jack, and Michele, of North Arlington. The Mighty Mite Tournament is named in rmemory of Dan Gilmore. Photo Credit: Gilmore Family/North Arlington Junior Football
The 2016 North Arlington Junior Vikings Mighty Mite football team will play in the annual Dan Gilmore Mighty Mite Tournament. Photo Credit: North Arlington Junior Football/Sal's Studio
Lyndhurst Mighty Mites will play in the annual Dan Gilmore Mighty Mite Tournament. Photo Credit: Lyndhurst Junior Football
Manchester Mighty Mites will play in their first Mighty Mite tournament. Photo Credit: Valdo Panzera/Manchester Junior Football
Rutherford Mighty Mites will play in the annual tournament in North Arlington. Photo Credit: Rutherford Junior Football
Hasbrouck Heights Mighty Mites will play North Arlington in the opening game of the Dan Gilmore Mighty Mite Day tournament. Photo Credit: Deana Apruzzese

NORTH ARLINGTON, N.J. -- When 12 Mighty Mite teams from the Meadowlands Football League take the field on Saturday, November 5, many of the players and coaches will focus on running the offense and defending the goal line. But for North Arlington's team, the day holds more significance.

The Mighty Mites is the instructional division for 7-year olds, wearing pads and helmets for the first time, and learning the fundamentals of the game, competition and good sportsmanship. Games are conducted with a running clock, but score is not kept. The annual Mighty Mite tournament was established by the league almost 10 years ago to allow the younger players to experience special year-end event. Two years ago the League renamed it Dan Gilmore Mighty Mite Day, in honor of North Arlington’s Dan Gilmore.

Gilmore dedicated time to his community and was a beloved coach, involved in the town’s rec youth softball, baseball, basketball and football programs. He had played for and later coached football at Queen of Peace High School.

In June 2015, Gilmore passed away in his sleep. He was 40 years old and was survived by a wife and three young children.

“Danny was a great father and husband and role model for all the kids in our community,” said Joe Witt, president of North Arlington Junior Vikings Football. “We all miss him more than he could have ever imagined.”

North Arlington Junior Vikings open the tournament against Hasbrouck Heights. The full schedule of games is below. All games will be played at Rip Collins Field, 99 River Road, North Arlington.

9 a.m. North Arlington(White)  vs. Hasbrouck Heights (Black)

10 a.m. Elmwood Park (Black) vs, Saddle Brook (White)

11 a.m. Rutherford (Blue)          vs, New Milford (White)

12 noon  Rutherford (White)    vs, Lyndhurst (Blue)

1 p.m.Carl/ER (Maroon)            vs, Manchester (White)

2 p.m Wood-Ridge (Blue)          vs, Harrison (White)

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