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New program continues to draw interest
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The Ceres Jr. Bulldogs Youth Football & Cheer Organization's inaugural season will get underway in July.

"We've had a really good response from the community," Vice President/Cheer Coordinator Elvia Guerrero said. "We're still not done with our signups."

The Jr. Bulldogs started signing up players and cheerleaders, aged 6-14, in April.

Registration dates were held at Mountain Mike's Pizza on Hatch Road.

Additional signups will be staged at the same site on June 10 (6-8 p.m.), June 12 (6-8 p.m.), June 24 (6-8 p.m.) and June 26 (6-8 p.m.).

Ceres already has a membership size of 160.

The Jr. Bulldogs will field varsity, junior varsity, novice and junior novice teams.

"We're not struggling," Guerrero said. "Our levels are filling up pretty fast."

Practices and games will be staged at Cesar Chavez Jr. High.

Ceres will run the same offensive and defensive plays at all four levels.

The Jr. Bulldogs are members of the Bay Valley Gridiron Conference.

Ceres' board consists of Guerrero, Faaluaina Moafanua (President), Rachel Valezuela (Secretary) and Kim Araquistain (Treasurer).

"We created something new," said Travis Taylor, junior-novice head coach. "Everybody is on the same page. "We're going to stick to our main goal. It's about the kids. We're going to create a fun atmosphere. I think we'll be really competitive."

The Ceres Cowboys and Ceres Seahawks, rival youth football and cheer programs, were designated affiliates of Ceres High and Central Valley in April.

"A lot of us are Ceres High alumni," Taylor said. "That's where our organization's name came from. We want a relationship with both high schools. Let's build Ceres, not divide it. We just want to give the kids another option."

The Jr. Bulldogs will practice for the first time on July 22.

"There's a lot of excitement," Taylor said.