Patriots Officially Sponsor Gay Bowl 17

Rob Kraft with LGBT football team

Image Courtesy of Facebook – FLAG Flag Football Boston

The New England Patriots will sponsor Gay Bowl 17, the National Gay Flag Football League’s annual championship, the team confirmed with Outsports.com.

The Patriots will be the first-ever NFL team to sponsor the bowl, another great move in the franchise’s history of supporting equality of all kinds. Bob Kraft himself even attended a banquet held on April 27 by FLAG (Friends, Lesbians, and Gays) flag football, Boston’s chapter of the NGFFL. The banquet was held to present high school athlete Chris Morse with a scholarship from the Greater Boston chapter of PFLAG.

Back in 2015, the New England Patriots also gave immense public support to the LGBTQ+ community by signing an amicus brief supporting same-sex marriage, leading up to it’s eventual legalization.

LGBT flag football boston

Image Courtesy of Facebook – FLAG Flag Football Boston

FLAG was founded in 1998 and consists of 22 teams from around Greater Boston with 14 players each. League games are played on Saturdays in the spring and fall.

The Gay Bowl was first held in Los Angeles in 2002 with three competing teams- one of which was Boston, and has been held every year since. Starting in 2003, the bowl was held every Columbus Day weekend.

Three divisions now compete in Gay Bowl play; Open A, Open B, and a Women’s League. The championship is always held in a different member city of NGFFL. FLAG won the bid to host this year, and the games will be held at the Fields in Progin Park in Lancaster, MA this Columbus Day weekend. Players will stay at either the Revere Hotel Boston Common or Boston Park Plaza. Not only do teams get to fight it out on the turf, but festivities in and around the city will be sponsored by the league all weekend.

lgbt beach football boston

Image Courtesy of Facebook – FLAG Flag Football Boston

Although this is the first time the Patriots have formally sponsored the bowl, it is not the first time they have shown support for it. When Boston last hosted in 2003, the Patriots sent former linebacker Andre Tippet, who also did the ceremonial coin toss.

About 40 teams from all across North America are expected to show up for Gay Bowl 17, representing the NGFFL’s 20 member cities. The NGFFL has over 200 active teams from the US and Canada.

This sponsorship reflects the progressive spirit and inclusiveness of our city, and will hopefully lead the way for other professional sports teams to show their support for the Gay Bowl and equality in sports. Gay Bowl 17 is sure to be a fun-filled weekend for all involved and a great display of Boston’s support for the LGBTQ+ community, that we know for sure!

Read more about this event here. 

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