Small Towns, Big Traditions

This weekend will be the 117th playing of “The Game.”  St Johnsbury Academy and Lyndon Institute have been playing this football game since 1894.  In 2013, USA Today polled to determine the country’s greatest high school football rivalries.  “The Game” won Vermont, New England, and the East, and took fourth in the nation.  

Join us for the 117th iteration of “The Game,” one of the longest-running football traditions in the Nation

The week leading up to “The Game” is dubbed Spirit Week. Students decorate hallways and a float for the parade.  On Thursday night, the football team has a steak dinner served by the seniors’ parents at our local Elks Club.  On Friday night, a parade down Main Street returns to campus for a bonfire.  After the fire, everyone in the community is invited to the school cafeteria for a pizza party.  After that, it is adults-only for an alumni reception back at the Elks Club.  

This rivalry not only brings out the best in both football teams but also showcases the best of our schools and communities.  Church steeples in both towns are lit in school colors. Players, parents, faculty, staff, alumni, and others join in the activities and share camaraderie and spirit originating nearly 130 years ago. Deep ties to legacy are alive and well, and this is what high school football in a small town is all about.  

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at and share with your colleagues and friends. Thanks for supporting this blog and joining our conversations, and as always, thanks for your time!  

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